The Applicators What's Your Excuse (Cornerstone R.A.S.)

What's Your Excuse (Cornerstone R.A.S.)

Record Reviews

The Applicators

What's Your Excuse (Cornerstone R.A.S.)

Coming and going in less time than it takes Robert Downey Jr. to score drugs, the Applicators' What's Your Excuse takes a mere 25 minutes to remind us all why girls kick ass. In this case, it's because they pair schoolgirl skirts with fishnets, write songs with titles like "Puke on You," and rock harder than a whole lot of boys. What's Your Excuse cuts straight to the heart of such universal punk-rock topics as musical beds ("My Turn"), wannabes ("She Smells Like Me"), and kitty theft ("Hola Cuca") without mincing words -- e.g., "You lie! You lie! Who told you to lie?" -- while a jackbooted version of the Dead Milkmen's "Violent School" (recorded live) reveals either a sly social conscience or twisted sense of humor. Either way, it works; by subscribing to the tried-and-true "keep it simple, stupid" philosophy of songwriting, this Austin quartet tears through their 12 songs with minimum fuss and maximum intensity. These are the girls who ditched P.E. to smoke cigarettes in the parking lot, the ones who were deep into Black Flag and the Gits when the rest of us were just discovering Nirvana. Although their explosive cover of Sleater-Kinney's "Good Things," which frankly leaves everything else in the dust, suggests it might take an album or two for the Applicators' originals to catch up with their attitude, the rest of What's Your Excuse makes it fairly obvious it'll be worth the wait.


A note to readers: Bold and uncensored, The Austin Chronicle has been Austin’s independent news source for over 40 years, expressing the community’s political and environmental concerns and supporting its active cultural scene. Now more than ever, we need your support to continue supplying Austin with independent, free press. If real news is important to you, please consider making a donation of $5, $10 or whatever you can afford, to help keep our journalism on stands.

Support the Chronicle  

More Music Reviews
Texas Platters
The Cypher (Record Review)

Rachel Rascoe, Feb. 21, 2020

Texas Platters
Martian Warlords
Area 69 (Record Review)

Tim Stegall, Jan. 3, 2020

More by Christopher Gray
Margaret Moser Tribute: Alvin Crow
Alvin Crow
Summer camp with the kids

June 30, 2017

Margaret Moser Tribute: The Rolling Stones
The Rolling Stones
That Margaret Moser, she’s a rainbow

June 30, 2017


The Applicators

One click gets you all the newsletters listed below

Breaking news, arts coverage, and daily events

Keep up with happenings around town

Kevin Curtin's bimonthly cannabis musings

Austin's queerest news and events

Eric Goodman's Austin FC column, other soccer news

Information is power. Support the free press, so we can support Austin.   Support the Chronicle