It’s hard to think about the 90s music scene without the band Everclear charging to the forefront of your mind. So many of their songs take me back to special times in my life that I was ecstatic when I found out that I’d be reviewing the band’s reissue of their debut album, World Of Noise. Not only were all of the tracks remastered, but there are also 6 bonus tracks, 2 of which have never been released. If that wasn’t enough, the band is ready to embark on a full 30th Anniversary Tour throughout North America. With that being said, lets spin some vinyl.
Everclear (World Of Noise):
Art Alexakis: Lead Guitar, Vocals
Craig Montoya: Bass
Scott Cuthbert: Drums, Vocals
Art Alexakis: Guitar, Vocals
Dave French: Guitar, Backing Vocals
Freddy Herrera: Bass, Backing Vocals
Brian Nolan: Drums
World Of Noise has to be the most overlooked Everclear album and I’ll admit that I’d never heard it in its entirety. The opening track, “Your Genius Hands,” sets the tempo for the rest of the album as it’s rhythmically simple yet gritty. “Fire Maple Song” is one of the few tracks from the album that I’ve seen the band perform live. The song has somewhat of a somber vibe to it and the original video was shot on a farm in Washington State.
Everclear maintains the somber vibe with “Loser Makes Good“” and it is one of my favorite tracks on the album. “Trust Fund” delves back into a deep grunge sound while “Invisible” has more of a straightforward rock approach. On the latter, Craig Montoya’s bass work provides a solid framework for the song.
Now let’s take a look at the bonus tracks. “Drunk Again” starts off with Art Alexakis’ signature guitar blazing and then yields to a very catchy riff that guides you through the rest of the song. “Pacific Wonderland” is an instrumental that clocks in at just under 2 minutes. The spirited track had moments that conjured up memories of the older surfing tunes from the 60s and 70s. A very enjoyable song. “Blondes” has also appeared on the on the 2004 EP Closure and then again on the 2009 album In A Different Light. This is another song that isn’t very complex but the more you hear it the more it sticks with you. With lyrics like “I cover my ears, I close my mind, She’s starting to fade” “Detroit” sounds like a love story that is no more while “1975” is more of a murky rock number that focuses on a period where drug use was prominent. The 2nd previously unreleased track is “Nervous & Weird.” Well sort of. It’s actually a 2001 remix of the original that has now been remastered. I like this version better as it seems to have more life to it, if that makes sense.
This album might not be for everybody, but to be fair you must see it in the right perspective. This album was recorded in someone’s basement for $400. If you’re looking for a polished mainstream album then you’ll probably be happier with Sparkle And Fade or So Much For The Afterglow, but don’t be so quick to dismiss World Of Noise. This is the grassroots of Everclear. It is the record that launched them into the iconic band that has enjoyed so much success over the years. Any diehard Everclear fan will love this record. It will also appeal to those who liked the music coming out of the Pacific Northwest punk/grunge scene back in the 80s and 90s. The record is gritty, and at times rough, but I could definitely see the foundation that it was building. Alexakis has endured his share of struggles over the years, but not only has he persevered, he has progressed. 30 years is an eternity in the music industry and the band is still making music and is out on the road now. A new song, “Year Of The Tiger,” will be out later this year. Just how “Wonderful” is that?
Album Rating: 7.5/10
1.Your Genius Hands (Remastered)
2.Sick & Tired (Remastered)
3.The Laughing World (Remastered)
4.Fire Maple Song (Remastered)
5.Pennsylvania Is… (Remastered)
6.Nervous & Weird (Remastered)
9.Trust Fund (Remastered)
10.Loser Makes Good (Remastered)
13.Drunk Again (Previously Unreleased Bonus Track)
14.Pacific Wonderland (Bonus Track)
15.Blondes (Bonus Track)
16.Detroit (Bonus Track)
17.1975 (Bonus Track)
18.Nervous & Weird 2001 Remix (Previously Unreleased Bonus Track)
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