Mindless Self Indulgence: You'll Rebel to Anything
Review By: Joe

As one of the only people on the internet who likes the band Mindless Self Indulgence (what, you think they call me a joker because I don't joke around?), I had wanted to review this album a couple months ago back when I got it. But I didn't. So I'm reviewing it now. This is important.

Frankenstein Girls Will Seem Strangely Sexy was MSI's last album proper and that came out way back in 2000. I was a freshman in college when I bought it in 2001 and, as a result, pretty stupid. For example, my favorite band before I found MSI had been The Offspring. Oh, Johnny, no.

So as I gradually decided that all the things I thought were right and good back in freshman year were stupid and wrong, I lumped MSI together with them. What had sounded awesome and crazycool to me before now struck me as cacophonic, unnecessarily offensive, and ridiculous. Of course, it helped that the friend who had before liked them along with me, now implanted this new notion of MSI being too immature and no good for nobody. I can't imagine why I listened, considering I run this website.

I didn't even know MSI had a new album coming out. I think the last I had really thought about them was in 2003 when I got that little mini-album of theirs, Despierta Los Ninos, and I was already into my "MSI NO!" phase by then so I think I listened to it once and that was it. So I saw this album in a store and said "Well, shit! They finally mades anotha!" I was fully planning to hate it because GRR THAT IS HOW IT HAD TO BE! Too bad MSI is so awesome.

This album is the best thing the band has done. I think this is great because they had a message on their website saying something to the effect of "MSI is working to make this their best album yet!" and how cool is it to say that and actually deliver on it? What I am saying is politicians could take a cue from this band. That is what I'm saying, man.

Jimmy Urine (the lead singer) said in an interview that he decided it was time to stop sucking and, frankly, they didn't suck before. They were just more of a novelty than a band in some ways. I mean, one of their first songs was about looking at five year old girls' panties. Frankenstein Girls consisted of thirty tracks in alphabetical order, many of which were less than two minutes in length. The first track instructed you to "kill yourself if you don't get what you want" and the track "I'm Your Problem Now" only had two real lines, one of which was "I love my mommy cuz she FUCKED THE SHIT OUT OF MY DAD!" Gracious, how naughty!

However, MSI's offensiveness fit well with the general style of the band, which was manic and insane and perfect for kids with ADD, following less of a verse, chorus, verse style and more of a "a bunch of different parts put wherever the hell in the song however the hell often Jimmy Urine feels like" with Jimmy singing at one point, screaming at another, and rocking some very impressive falsetto other times.

So has MSI put on a business suit with a power tie and joined the commercial world of pop musak? Don't you be so silly like that!

I listened to basically nothing but this album for at least a month after getting it, then went back and re-listened to the older stuff too. This album will still greatly upset your mom. Jimmy still can't get through a track without using an expletive or two (except, I suppose, in the Rush cover of "Tom Sawyer") and it's still fairly manic and noisy. It's just a much more refined, cohesive version of MSI's style now and the offensive stuff has really been scaled back (there's still a song called "2 Hookers and an Eightball" mind you but it happens to be about how easy it is for Jimmy to write his offensive lyrics) and, you know, it's not like that added to the musical quality anyway.

Basically, if your friends are at least a bit open-minded, it's now possible they could possibly get into this band (seriously, my one friend couldn't quite get into the previous album but thinks "What Do They Know?" and "Prom" is some of the best stuff he's heard in long time). Because, I SAY THIS NOW, I think this is really good music. It's inventive, it's crazy, and, although it may borrow from a number of different genres, it merges them all together and adds a bunch of stuff that is entirely original to this band. I mean Jimmy's voice is in itself a unique instrument. I know of no one else who uses their noisehole the way this man does. Also, there's a lot of videogamey sounds to it! Which is great!

Interestingly enough, this is closer to what their first album, Tight, sounded like, so that's largely a good album too (this one is still considerably better though). Despierta Los Ninos also rocks. In the end, Frankenstein Girls is the weakest one, and a lot of it is still pretty cool.

I was going to go over the tracks more specifically ("PROM" IS MY FAVORITE) but this is good enough. I had a roommate who was amazed I even considered MSI to be real music and, while that's somewhat valid, the band is now at a point that if you can't hear the good in it, you are probably a jerkface (or you have different tastes than me, jerkface). I have an aquaintance who only listens to formless, experimental noisiness who panned MSI as formulaic without hearing much of it. Imagine being so open-minded to experimental crap you close yourself off to everything else?! And not noticing the fact that, in a way, simply slapping together a bunch of non-structured nonsense is a formulaic practice in itself?! And my friend who thought he was too mature for them now? This band is fully aware of its immaturity and they're making money off it. How come my friend is an unemployed pothead?

This review was more about my life but this is a great album. Mindless Self Indulgence is a kick ass band and they're only getting better. After I got this album, it effectively ruined all other music for me, and I listened to it and nothing else for about month. To date, I'm still quite obsessed. That's a good job, that is.

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