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No Use for a Name - The Feel Good Record of the Year Album Cover
Author's Rating
Vocals 9.25
Musicianship 9.25
Lyrics 7
Production 10
Creativity 7.25
Lasting Value 8.25
Reviewer Tilt 8.5
Final Verdict: 85%
Member Ratings
Vocals 8.25
Musicianship 7.88
Lyrics 8.5
Production 8.5
Creativity 7.75
Lasting Value 7.5
Reviewer Tilt 8
Average: 81%
Inside AP.net

No Use for a Name - The Feel Good Record of the Year

Reviewed by: CellarGhosts (04/05/08)
No Use for a Name - The Feel Good Record of the Year
Record Label: Fat Wreck Chords
Release Date: April 1, 2008


After 2005's somewhat shaky Keep Them Confused, No Use for a Name have evidently decided to "return to their roots" so to speak by reaching into their back catalog and blending elements from all their previous albums thus far. While the collective mood of the majority of The Feel Good Record of the Year's tracks might not live up to the album's name, this is still a mighty fine effort from the boys who brought us such seminal melodic punk classics as More Betterness!, Making Friends, and Hard Rock Bottom, all of which one could certainly hear traces of throughout this record. From the opening one-two punch of "Biggest Lie" (sporting what one could only call a 'shred-erific" guitar solo) to the soothing lull of the piano driven "Ontario," (with a melody that calls to mind David Bowie's "Life on Mars?") The Feel Good Record of the Year has a bit of something for everyone. Fans of frontman Tony Sly's acoustic split with Joey Cape (of Lagwagon fame) will no doubt love the bouncy "Sleeping Between Trucks," while those who pledge allegiance to 2002's Hard Rock Bottom are bound to be singing along to "Pacific Standard Time," a relentlessly catchy number with an octave chord pattern slightly reminiscent of the No Use for a Name favorite "International You Day."

There's really not one bad song in the bunch, although "Yours to Destroy" does fall a little flat, at least in comparison to the rest of the record. Opening with a somewhat lagging guitar riff set to a programmed drum beat, the track is likely to throw some listeners off upon first listen. Though it quickly redeems itself with an all too infectious chorus that finds Sly belting out what could be interpreted as an ode to the hardships of a life spent on the road in the lines, "Driving out into another state / I can see the road behind me / Falling back into the same mistake / So hard to avoid." It's tracks like this one though, as well as the jangly, almost surreal "Kill the Rich" that show sings of the band's age, and their maturity, yet willingness to experiment, all while being able to maintain their status as one of the heavyweights in the ever expanding realm of pop punk.

Something else about this album that is worthy of mention is the production. Recorded with Bill Stevenson and Jason Livermore at the legendary Blasting Room Studios, located in Fort Collins, Colorado, (where everyone from artists such as NOFX, The Ataris, Lagwagon, and Comeback Kid have laid tape), the whole album rings with an impressing amount of clarity and balance. The drums and bass are both full and rounded, a sound which only helps punctuate the guitars, which are at times a roaring maelstrom of distortion ("Biggest Lie," "The Feel Good Song of the Year") and at others sharp and melodic ("Domino," "Pacific Standard Time"). And don't even get me started on those trademark No Use for a Name vocal melodies, folks.

The Feel Good Record of the Year isn't No Use for a Name's best work (my heart still belongs to More Betterness!), but it certainly is a welcome return to form and will sit really well amongst their catalog, likely to become a fan favorite in years to come. And whether you're an avid fan, a newcomer, or have yet to give this band a listen, you'll be sure to find quite a bit to enjoy about this record. My advice? The next time that little Feel Good Record of the Year banner shows up at the top of your page while you're poking around on AP.net, click it, follow it, order it. You'll be glad you did.

Recommended if You LikeMillencolin, Lagwagon, walks on the beach, Bad Astronaut, mosh pits, The Ataris, getting songs stuck in your head for days at a time, The Loved Ones

myspace.com/nouseforaname
 
Displaying posts 1 - 15 of 25
06:17 AM on 04/11/08
#2
versus_god
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Nice review, Chris!

Another solid record from NUFAN. The first two tracks are great, as are "Domino" and "Sleeping Between Trucks" (the latter being my favorite song on the album). "The Feel Good Song Of The Year" is pretty tasty as well.

Overall, another great effort from Tony Sly and friends.
06:33 AM on 04/11/08
#3
CellarGhosts
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Nice review, Chris!

Another solid record from NUFAN. The first two tracks are great, as are "Domino" and "Sleeping Between Trucks" (the latter being my favorite song on the album). "The Feel Good Song Of The Year" is pretty tasty as well.

Overall, another great effort from Tony Sly and friends.
thanks, Alexis! glad you liked it.

I agree, obviously haha. I'm not quite sure of my top favorite song on the album, although it probably is "Pacific Standard Time". tough call.
01:55 PM on 04/11/08
#4
SanePsychotic
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Good review. Not a huge NUFAN fan but I might check it out.
01:56 PM on 04/11/08
#5
CellarGhosts
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thanks, Kris
04:46 PM on 04/11/08
#6
allhourcymbals
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Great read, been loving this album more and more with each listen.
04:48 PM on 04/11/08
#7
CellarGhosts
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thanks, Courtney. even if it doesn't stick at first (like it pretty much did for me), it does seem to grow on you more each time.
06:12 PM on 04/11/08
#8
Genuma
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Good review Chris, I need to listen to this already! I downloaded it but never got around to it.
06:15 PM on 04/11/08
#9
CellarGhosts
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thanks, John! you definitely need to give it a listen sometime, I'm pretty sure you'd enjoy it.
06:39 PM on 04/11/08
KatieKutthroat.
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Hey, good review Chris. I'm planning to check out this album.
06:40 PM on 04/11/08
CellarGhosts
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thanks Katie! that's cool you're planning on checking it out, hope you like it
08:23 PM on 04/11/08
Chris Fallon
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You're a good reviewer, Chris. I enjoy reading your stuff because it's quick and to the point (unlike me, who tends to get a little wordy sometimes). I think this album is a vast improvement over Keep Them Confused but can't top their older stuff (primarily their middle-section career). You can definitely hear the influence of Tony's solo work creeping into their songs though.

In conclusion ... good work, my man.
08:28 PM on 04/11/08
CellarGhosts
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thanks, other Chris :-D I appreciate it.

as you could probably tell from my review, I agree. it's better than Keep Them Confused, but still doesn't top More Betterness! or Hard Rock Bottom for me. (those being my favorite two NUFAN albums.) and yeah, first time I listened to "Sleeping Between Trucks" I was instantly reminded of his stuff on the Joey Cape split.
10:22 PM on 04/11/08
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Awesome review man. Great to see you finally getting one posted here.
06:19 AM on 04/12/08
CellarGhosts
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Thanks, Andrew!
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