So Long and Thanks for All the Shoes was NOFX’s 1997 neapolitan follow-up to the marginally successful 1996 album, Heavy Petting Zoo (in and of itself, a follow-up to the heavily successful Punk in Drublic). This version, pressed on tan vinyl, was an exclusive to 500 copies, and was offered directly from the Epitaph Record website. Also released on black (original), brown, clear pink, green, solid pink, and solid brown, So Long and Thanks for All the Shoes can be enjoyed in a variety of flavorful, and deliciously vibrant colors. Sugary-sweet pop punk for your ear’s sweet-tooth.
If you haven’t noticed, we’ve been swimming in the urine-infested pool of pop punk lately, and even though our fingers are beginning to prune, we’re not ready to towel off just yet. Released in 1994 by Epitaph Records, this first of (so far) 10 comps in the Punk-O-Rama series features early 90s classics by NOFX, Pennywise, The Offspring, Rancid, Bad Religion, and SNFU, among others. As the only version release on vinyl (then again in 2014 on limited green), Punk-O-Rama (vol. 1) stands alone, kicking the dirt with its boots, desperately waiting for his brothers, volumes 2 – 10 to come out to play. Punk-O-Rama is a pure, pop punk classic.
Songs that fan anything, are worth a healthy listen. Song fanning the flames of discontent… well, that’s a horse of a different color. White, in this case, and a European RSD (Record Store Day) exclusive, Refused’s 3rd full-length offering, Songs to Fan the Flames of Discontent saw both a red vinyl 2010 reissue, as well as a 2012 white vinyl reissue after the initial bomb-dropping 1996 release.
Owning a hard copy of an album more than twice is usually an indication of some pretty stellar grooves, but my (excuse) rationale behind owning three copies of Pennywise’s 1995 effort, About Time, is purely for nostalgic purposes. Dubbed to tape more than a few times, About Time was one of the 8 or so cassettes sliding around the pickup (a 1989 Ford Ranger) for much of my Junior year of high school. I distinctly remember driving to and from work, and to the occasional bonfire, blasting Perfect People while hollering along to the lyrics (usually at full roar, and much to the dismay of my frequent, punk-deaf passengers).
Southern California pop-punk at its finest, About Time recently (as of a few months ago, I believe) saw a limited run (500 copies) on smoke colored vinyl. Seeing frisky releases such as this that incorporate the album cover into the vinyl color get me excited for upcoming reissues that will undoubtedly acquire my money (the smoke colored record ties in nicely to the timebomb on the cover, don’t you think?). For nostalgia’s sake, owning an album more than twice makes perfect sense to me.
I don’t have much to offer tonight except for this half-assedly composed (that’s the industry term) action photo of my all-time favorite flavor-shade (read: color) of polyvinyl chloride. One would think that the absence of normality (in this case, white), would tickly my ear’s fancy, but I rather find myself a gullible sucker for the opacity of clear records. My exhaustion has taken its toll, and the Groove is taking the blow.
In June of 1999, Fat Wreck Chords released the optimistically ambitious Short Music for Short People, a novelty album featuring 101 bands spanning the punk rock spectrum in 30 second bursts. With grandfathers like Black Flag, Descendents, Circle Jerks, Misfits and Youth Brigade, to Fat mainstays Lagwagon, NOFX, Wizo and Strung Out, to fellow Epitaph Records mates Bad Religion, Pennywise, The Offspring and The Bouncing Souls, Short Music for Short People, as enjoyable as it is (and it really is), becomes exceptionally laborious when attempting to search for 1/101 of this record’s contents for just a 30 second reward. Lucky for me, I had a brief moment of clarity as a 19-year-old twit and picked up the compact disc version as well. That’s all gone as we wake up each day amongst the digital rays from our digital sun and pull up our digital socks and drive our digital stick-shift vehicles to our digital jobs to earn our digital wages and continue to get looked over for those digital promotions, but that’s neither here nor there.
As hilarious as it is catchy, and as arduous as it is enduring, Short Music for Short People is an aggressive achievement worthy of any open-minded listener. Also, you can learn how to make a bomb out of household objects on track 45, courtesy of The Offspring. Don’t try this at home, kids.