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Me First and the Gimme Gimmes - Go Down Under Album Cover
Author's Rating
Vocals 8.5
Musicianship 8.75
Lyrics N/A
Production 9.25
Creativity 7.75
Lasting Value 7
Reviewer Tilt 8
Final Verdict: 82%
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Me First and the Gimme Gimmes - Go Down Under

Reviewed by: Chris Fallon (03/28/11)
Me First and the Gimme Gimmes - Go Down Under
Record Label: Fat Wreck
Release Date: February 1, 2011

Five songs may seem a lot like receiving four chicken nuggets on an empty stomach, but for anyone who finds superstar cover band Me First and the Gimme Gimmes a delight, they'll gladly take anything they get after a four year fasting. Go Down Under is the first all-new Gimmes material since 2006, celebrating the varied pop music history of modenr Australia, where the band is currently on tour.

The selection may not hit upon all the most familiar bases for casual pop music fans, but each is an Aussie pop delight with a classic, reworked Gimmes touch of magic. Obvious choices by Men at Work or AC/DC are purposely left out in favor of soft-rock pop hits. Air Supply's famously cornball "All Out of Love" has always felt ripe for the picking, and the band offers up one of their finer moments with their rendition. The Olivia Newton-John soul-pop number-one smash, "Have You Never Been Mellow," also gets a lovely facelift here, with vocalist Spike Slawson giving the dated tune a fantastic punk kick. Like many Gimme tunes, the arrangements both mock and celebrate the tune's expiration.

The INXS cover, "Never Tear Us Apart," isn't a misfire, but it's thumping bass line doesn't sustain the overall fun and peak drive of the record. "Friday On My Mind" is the one truly obscure track here, a mid-60's pop gem that cracked the Top 20 in the US, but receives little radioplay to this day. Just as memorable as anything on Blowin' in the Wind, it's a silly track that is given a fresh, sped-up twist. Last but not least... don't leave off the Sammy Hagar-penned Rick Springfield classic (yes, he didn't just sing "Jessie's Girl"), "I've Done Everything For You," which finds the entire band having so much fun, it makes the music sound better to you. That's ultimately what keeps the Gimmes thriving: their charming, upbeat mentality of making seemingly stupid music sound pretty damn good.

If it works, why mess with it?

Recommended if You LikeEverything else the Gimmes have ever recorded
Choice Cuts"Have You Never Been Mellow" and "All Out of Love"

Online VitalsOfficial Myspace Page
PurchaseAmazon MP3 | iTunes
Displaying posts 1 - 6 of 6
05:08 AM on 03/28/11
Registered User
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bdonne07's Avatar
I LOVE Me First, let me state that right off the bat. But this release falls incredibly short. All of their other stuff is A Level, but this is like C Minus.

No problems with the review though!
06:58 AM on 03/28/11
Andy Adores Alliteration
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prefix-core's Avatar
Rad review, great release! Also note that there's a pretty rad musical reference to Black Flag's "Rise Above" that serves as an intro to one of the E.P. tracks.
09:35 AM on 03/28/11
Like You Know Whatever
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domotime2's Avatar
what makes ME First relevant and good is the fact that they don't just make an album of obvious current pop covers...that would be incredibly lame and worthless. The fact that they find certain songs that just GEL with their style of covers is great.

i agree, the fact that this is all they could spit out in the past like 4 years seems pretty pathetic haha.
10:11 AM on 03/28/11
Andy Adores Alliteration
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prefix-core's Avatar
i agree, the fact that this is all they could spit out in the past like 4 years seems pretty pathetic haha.

I don't think that's a fair assessment, considering that they only bother with this band for fun. It's hardly a major project with lots of thought put into it, haha. I recall reading in an interview that they just go into the studio for a weekend or two, drink a whole lot, and the process for songs goes something like this:

- Pick a song.
- Decide whether or not the song should be faster than the original, or about the same tempo.
- Try it.
- If it doesn't work after a few takes? Move on.
12:45 PM on 03/28/11
Corey Hoffy
I refuse to spend life on my knees
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Corey Hoffy's Avatar
Always loved these dudes. Have to check this out. Kick-ass review.
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