Pitchfork (Website) - "On GROWN UP, Jay's chaotic rage is the driving force behind most of the songs."
The Reatards includes: Jay Reatard.
Personnel: Sean Redd, Jay Reatard (vocals, guitar); Rich Cook (vocals, drums).
Liner Note Authors: Zac Ives; Eric Friedl; Meghan Smith; Jay Reatard.
Recording information: This Ain't Easley's Studios.
The Reatards exploded into a fireball of guitar-powered adolescent rage on their debut album, 1998's Teenage Hate, and if they got a bit tighter and recorded themselves with a dash more care on their second album, 1999's Grown Up, Fucked Up, in neither case did it get in the way of what Jay Reatard and his bandmates did best -- blowing up manic, primitive punk rock with an abundance of crude energy and the ferocious attitude that comes with being 18 years old and pissed off at practically everything surrounding you. With Sean Redd on second guitar and Rich Cook on drums, Reatard had a pair of collaborators who were capable of keeping up with him on Grown Up, Fucked Up, which is a pretty impressive achievement in itself, but as lead singer, guitarist, main songwriter, and all-around vision guy with the Reatards, Jay Reatard was the star of this album, and he doesn't let go of the spotlight for a moment. These 16 songs may be simple, but Reatard had a way of finding actual melodies and hooks in his jagged fragments of punk rock mayhem, and even when Reatard's snarling rage is at its most over the top, there's a street kid's sincerity and the recognizable pain of a broken heart in his performances that make this much more than just another seething high-school kid with a cheap guitar. Plenty of punk rockers are good at projecting anger, but Reatard seethed with something more than the usual Young Male Bile, and Grown Up, Fucked Up shows how much he had to say just under the grimy surface of these tunes, and on this album one can hear faint clues of the somewhat more sophisticated music he would later make with Lost Sounds and as a solo artist. ~ Mark Deming