album review: glassjaw – our color green EP (2011)

well – back to work, right? what’s most surprising is that a 5 song EP from glassjaw managed to have a bigger word count than most reviews i’ve written, which average anywhere from 400 to 500. even more notable, this is my first review for an EP – ever. even in college. it’s all good, though. here’s to the first of many reviews in ’11.

glassjaw’s back, and that’s pretty much the best thing ever.

-grizzly


Artist: Glassjaw
Album: Our Color Green EP
Record Label: N/A
Release Date: January 1, 2011

For the record, Glassjaw might be one of the only post-hardcore bands that could pull off a stunt this obnoxious and this blatantly fairweather. It’s been more than 8 years since the Long Island quartet (then a quintet) released their sophomore full-length, Worship and Tribute. Furthermore, the group’s only remaining original members, Daryl Palumbo and Justin Beck, have been toying with the idea and hinting at possibilities of a new release for around five years now. Despite the lack of new material, the band has developed a rabid cult following since then, allowing them to sell out sparse dates across the globe in the most frantic of fashions.

Our Color Green is the culmination of the latter half of 2010 in the world of Glassjaw. Once a month for the past five months, the band has released their share of cryptic live performances, presales for now-rare 7” vinyl singles and various mp3 promotions for each track that would eventually become this EP. All things considered, what better way for this band to aggravate their fanbase then by putting all five of these songs on one EP and call it a formal release? Not to mention, the likes of “Jesus Glue” and “You Think You’re John Fucking Lennon” have been live show staples and fan favorites since 2006.

Despite the persistent fan abuse, this band manages to impress and entrap. Our Color Green is a cohesive collection of what the band’s been up to for the past 8 years. Granted, because there are only five songs, what remains is the fanbase’s inevitable greed for simply wanting more, which leads one to believe that the title of the EP is a joke in itself. A stretch, sure – but nothing that you can’t put past Palumbo or Beck.

And on the musical side of things, Manny Carrero and Durijah Lang are indubitably the strongest rhythm section Glassjaw’s revolving door of members has ever seen. Both are former alumni of the band, whether it be during the recording of 2000′s Everything You Ever Wanted to Know About Silence (Carrero) or even further back (Lang), and it’s good to see these two back in their most pristine forms, respectively. Lang’s drumming is bewildering and as unorthodox as his kit set up, while Carrero’s bass noodling is a force to be reckoned with, as heard in the opening seconds of “All Good Junkies Go To Heaven” and your choice of breakdowns in “Stars” or “Jesus Glue.” Old timers will recognize “Stars” as an interpolation of 1997′s “Star Above My Bed” from Kiss Kiss Bang Bang, and revel in the fact that Glassjaw is nearly the same band they’ve always been. Palumbo and Beck have also fine-tuned their craft. Palumbo’s yet to miss a step and Beck manages to allow Glassjaw to continue sounding like they still have two guitarists.

As cliche as it is, only time will tell what’s in store for this band. While these five songs are all outstanding, there’s still more story to be told. They’ve been performing nearly five other brand new songs in their live shows as of late, which leads one to believe there’s an LP in there somewhere. Or another five-month mp3 and 7” campaign. Or another self-imposed exile. Or a focus on Head Automatica, House of Blow, Sports, Geometry, Merchdirect and any other side projects these four lunatics have on reserve.

Grade: 8.1/10

2 comments

  1. psyence

    nice. I too believe this is not the end of the current story, maybe a first paragraph? At least I hope so. very glad to see carrero back in the fold, a truly original bassist. You just cant get enough of the Gj!!

  2. Lucifyte

    Oh, how I love your love for Glassjaw.
    Good review, I can’t wait to listen to this ep as a ‘cohesive work’ if you will.
    But really, thanks for keeping me updated with the going-ons of this band. I’m too lazy to do it myself, and I’m definitely going to enjoy listening to that bootlegged set.

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