Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Album Review: The Slacker's Self Medication

The Ska, Reggae, Soul, Rockabilly, Punk fusion of The Slackers has been kicking out the great sounds for about 15 years now. For the record, the band describes their sound as Jamaican rock and roll. And given how good their latest album, Self Medication is—and how much they tour—to be cliché, they don’t seem to be slowing down anytime soon. And that’s good news for fans.

One of the elements of the band that makes their music particularly sound like their own and stand the test of time and survived the pop-ska craze of several years ago is the use of the organ. Together with the horns, this really provides a soul(ful) underpinning the Jamaican rhythms. “Estranged” from the new album is a great example of this. Another standout is the lead track, “Every Day Is Sunday.” I dare you to try and resist the overwhelming desire to pogo that this track induces. And wow, “Stars” is a kind of Ska-ballad. Very lovely and another reason these guys have got it going on. It takes a lot of guts to throw a slow song into the mix.

Beyond the aforementioned three songs, Self Medication is strong from beginning to end and is definitely found a home on my current regular listening. If you haven’t listened to The Slackers before, this new Album is a great place to start. And if you get the chance to see these guys live, word on the street is you should do so.


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