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Total Entertainment!

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Album Review

The kings of queercore return with a collection of heartfelt love tunes and hilarious send-ups that eschew simple pop-punk for crunchy power pop (the bouncy and bittersweet "Spiral," for example). The album marks a return to the band's upbeat form after the more serious Absurd Pop Song Romance. Pansy Division has always been especially adept at clever lyrics and Total Entertainment! is no exception, from the laugh-out-loud "Blurry Down Below" ("Woke up this morning and I was pixeled out,") to the wry "Saddest Song" ("Why do I feel so stupid if I'm so damn smart?"). They've also got a knack for new wave (like the vocodered "No Protection") and Pixies punk (like the dark and grinding "Alpine Skiing" — and if you don't know what that euphemism means, well, you'll just have to either think about it for a few minutes or listen to the song). Pansy Division may still offend conservative sensibilities, but Total Entertainment! is exactly what the title says — not necessarily the most innovative album of the year but definitely one of the funniest and most fun.

Biography

Formed: 1991 in San Francisco, CA

Genre: Rock

Years Active: '90s, '00s, '10s

Fashioning themselves as the first openly gay rock band, San Francisco's Pansy Division formed in 1991 around the music of singer/guitarist Jon Ginoli and bassist Chris Freeman. Seeking a musical outlet that reflected their own subcultures and views of gay life, the bandmembers drew influences from '60s pop and '70s punk, producing a heavy, but infectious pop-punk sound and establishing themselves at the forefront of the emerging queercore movement. After signing with Lookout! Records in 1993, Pansy...
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