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White Fang: Chunks *

Track List

>Full Time Freaks
>Bong Rip
>4-Track Mind
>Drugs I've Taken
>Sleeping Bag
>Tear It Up
>Chairman of the Bored
>Turning Square
>Doin' the Damn Thing
>Pissing in the Driveway
>Thank You
>Shit on My Shoe

Album Notes

"Let White Fang speak for the monkey people of Earth!" proclaims the lunatic spoken word intro to the band's (seemingly) millionth LP, Chunks. Now based in L.A., where their love affair with like-minded D.I.Y. chums Burger Records continues to blossom, the Portland natives remain a polarizing bunch. Occasionally winning critical adoration but just as often fielding accusations of total slacker underachievement, White Fang seem to just shrug it all off and just do what they've been doing since high school: prolifically releasing homemade albums of lo-fi thrash-punk that play like one big in-joke. While the making of Chunks -- arguably their first decent-sounding album -- offers a new twist in their narrative, they are still in no danger of taking themselves too seriously, and that's a good thing. Born out of a suggestion by former Detroiter Bobby Harlow to "get your shit totally together and make a really big-sounding record that blows minds," White Fang got up off the couch long enough to do just that. Produced by Harlow at Burger's Studio B, Chunks acts as a sort of "Introduction to White Fang." On this mix of new songs and some re-recorded versions of earlier highlights, Harlow manages to harness the daft, freewheeling slackery that is the band's signature while tightening things up enough to become accessible to fans outside of the cassette rock underground. The lead single is called "Bong Rip," and with its demented stoner samples and psych bong-hit/gong breakdown, it's exactly as fun as you imagine it to be. Of the previously recorded material, each feels like an improvement on its original, with "Full Time Freaks" and "4-Track Mind" standing out above the rest. On the low-key "Wander" they tone down their antics to deliver a very solid (and fairly serious) groove rocker, while on "I Love School" they come across like Ween's delinquent nephews hell-bent on perplexing critics of the new generation by flashing quality craftsmanship, then pissing on it with sophomoric wit. White Fang have hijacked the logos of both Taco Bell and Van Halen (the latter graces Chunks' cover), and that's not too far away from what they sound like. If you were on the fence about them before, this could be the album to convince you of their charms. ~ Timothy Monger


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