I used to like punk rock. I’ll get back to that point.
The main point I want to get to, because it’s relevant for two reasons, is this: I am an asshole. I often come off as likable in person, and after a few drinks I am loquacious and fun, but that generally starts to subside once you get to know me and have to listen to me talk about subjects that make you uncomfortable at 4 AM.
The first reason I need you to know that I am a douche is because I know Shamefinger. They are my boys, genuinely. And they’re good enough friends of mine to know that asking me to review their record could be a terrible idea. I will tell you to your face that what you do sucks and it’s not because I think I’m so great, it’s because I try to be honest and not waste anyone’s time. With that out of the way, Shamefinger’s new album, Sorry Mom, is really good. No foolin’.
The second reason I started this review off the way I did is because I’m terrible at having fun. Things that are fun make me uncomfortable. I’m very good at not doing what I would end up enjoying. Because of this, pop punk is not a genre I have ever actively searched for. I used to like a lot more hardcore than I do now, and I love a Stooges record as much as the next guy, but I’m not punk. So this record, and the way Shamefinger have thrust themselves upon me over the years, is basically my comeuppance. You guys win. I love the record and I love it because it’s fun and funny and bouncy and alive. Fuck you Farmer, Party Pat, David, and Ryan. You win.
The record starts with everyone singing “Happy Birthday,” including the line “You disappointing your parents,” so we’re off to a great start. The first section of the album shows off the diversity of voices that Shamefinger has available. Party Pat’s earnest appreciation of his friends on “NYE,” Farmer brutally shaming (get it?) every scene brat that thinks they’re too good for a $5 cover on “Septum Ring,” and David sharing the common lament of the modern leftist millennial who has to watch their parents parents get sucked into the soul crushing fuck machine that is Fox News on “Change the Channel,” you’ve got multiple personalities who, while being distinct, play perfectly as a team, all to the grind and precision of Ryan’s absolutely keyed in drumming. And I would be remiss in not mentioning the thumb to these fingers, producer Alyssa Moore, who produced and engineered the record masterfully.
Along with the talent in the songwriting, the humor throughout the record makes it especially stand out to me. There are a few 3-15 second songs that punctuate sections of the record and are genuinely funny. As well, the lyrics of tracks like the Dungeons and Dragons themed “Nat 20 Lite,” which is interjected with a brutal metal bridge, or the title track “Sorry Mom,” which is delivered in a Michael Graves era Misfits style and if you think that’s not a compliment I’ll fight you wherever and whenever you want.
Sorry Mom is earnest, exciting, humorous, and well worth your listen and money. I loved it as much as I hated having to write a single word of this review. See you fellas at the Hi-Tone, because I’m not going to a house show, I’m 30.