Go Down Under
Fat Wreck Chords
Ahh, Me First and The Gimme Gimmes – a punk rock super group specifically dedicated to doing themed cover songs. With members of NOFX, Lagwagon, The Swingin’ Utters and The Foo Fighters,you can be damn sure that they know what they’re doing. On top of that, you know that they’re just doing this for the sheer fun of it all. They all have other successful bands, so this is just a reprieve for them: dress up in matching outfits, punk up some songs, get drunk and act likes idiots. That is what Me First and The Gimme Gimmes are all about.
On Go Down Under, the band picks up their themed releases and tackles five Australian songs in anticipation of their upcoming Australian tour. Therefore you get treated to punked upped songs originally done by INXS, Air Supply, Olivia Newton John, The Easybeats and Rick Springfield.
The problem I find myself faced with: I really don’t give a shit about this release.
See, I love cover songs – especially when I know the originals. I like seeing a band add their unique flavour to the tune; or, if I don’t know it, I like being introduced to a song that somehow influenced the band I’m listening to. There are, however, times where I don’t like cover songs. Those are the times where a band takes a song way out of their genre and twists it into their own genre for a laugh and sarcastic chuckle. This is what Me First and The Gimme Gimmes do, and do well. Sadly, as a listener, those cover songs are only good when you’re in on the joke.
But on Go Down Under, I’m not in on the joke because I don’t know the originals. Sure, some have a sense of fleeting recognition but I could not describe the five original songs to you at all. All I could say is I bet the originals aren’t good, because these five covers aren’t really good either. Maybe I’m missing the joke and if you knew the originals, you’d appreciate The Gimme Gimmes take on them. Instead, this just serves as a reminder as to why I never listened to Air Supply in the first place.
Despite the pedigree of the band, I can’t get behind Go Down Under in anyway. Luckily, I sincerely doubt any of The Gimme Gimmes really give a shit what I think. They’re just here to have fun, get drunk and wear matching costumes.