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Friday SOS Record Reviews

Hypercaffium Spazzinate (Epitaph)

By Marc Savlov, November 4, 2016, Music

"Started out with nothing to say/ In a carpet cave we learned how to play/ We didn't know that this would last forever." So concedes iconic, bespectacled frontman Milo "I Don't Want to Grow Up" Aukerman on the first new Descendents LP since 2004's Cool to Be You. SoCal's proto-nerdcore smartasses have inevitably aged since their 1981 debut Fat EP, but you'd never know it from this caffeinated comeback, which crams 16 snap, crackle, and punk tracks into a 31-minute blast of pure pop-punk abandon. "Feel This" offers blunt, eyes-wide testimony to the health hardships of the Redondo Beach quartet's latter-day sainthood – a heart attack for bassist Karl Alvarez, skinsman Bill Stevenson's brain tumor. "Victim of Me" cuts zero slack to a culture of victimization, while serio-comic tirade "No Fat Burger" retorts early singles "Weinerschnitzel" and "I Like Food." Muscular production from the Blasting Room's Jason Livermore brings Stephen Egerton's melodic guitar to the forefront, and Alvarez and Stevenson's lockstep percussion sounds downright youthful. (Fri., 11:40pm, Forest stage)


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