PAGAN with Crave Death, Blind Girls & Masochist. Crowbar, Brisbane Saturday 18 August, 2018 At 8pm on a Saturday …
The year is 1991–actor Anthony Hopkins shocks audiences as a cannibalistic psychopath in The Silence Of The Lambs, a little-known band called Nirvana released Nevermind, an album that would go down in history, and Disney release the Oscar-winning Beauty And The Beast–you might say the year was pretty good for film and music history, but let’s not forget the sounds of the underground shall we?
MORE: TROPHY EYES: The Dreamers And The Doers // ALPHA WOLF: … And Out Come The Breakdowns // OUTRIGHT: Don’t Holler Atcha Girl
REVIEWS: TROPHY EYES: The American Dream // AS IT IS: The Great Depression
In 1991 a band of no-fucks-given punk-rockers called NOFX released their third studio album, Ribbed. Fast forward to 2018 and Ribbed, like most of the music from the seminal punks, has gained a cult following. So the fact that the band have released a live recording of the album in its entirety as part of Fat Wreck Records Live In A Dive series, should mean the chance for long-time fans to reminisce and for new-age young ‘uns to be educated, right?
The nostalgia is real, people, but it can’t be found in this album.
Recorded in Los Angeles’ Mayan Theatre in 2012, crank up the volume loud enough and yeah, Ribbed–Live In A Dive gives you that live show sensation–but as for feeling like you’re experiencing NOFX in 1991? Nah, wrong way to market this release, I’m afraid. NOFX play straight through without straying much from the album’s original path and besides their usual spiritual outpourings and comedic antics between songs, really don’t give us much. This live version was subject to all the recording technologies that weren’t around in the early 90s so this comes off louder and punchier than its studio release. A higher quality recording is a nice treat but it smooths out the sloppy edges that make NOFX the performers they are.
The album was recorded to make you feel like you were really there back in the day and to celebrate NOFX’s pioneering achievement in releasing such an influential body of music, but the fact is, front man Fat Mike’s 2012 voice ain’t nothing like 1991, and he doesn’t necessarily make the same waves with his performance. Silly as it seems to lament but wouldn’t it be so awesome if all NOFX stuff sounded today like it did in 1991? The nostalgia is real, people, but it can’t be found in this album.
STANDOUT TRACKS: Green Corn, Shower Days, Nowhere
STICK THIS NEXT TO: Bad Religion, Rancid, Lagwagon