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Get the Picture?

Smash Mouth

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Album Review

By the time Smash Mouth released their fourth album, Get the Picture?, in the summer of 2003, they were nearly an American summer institution. Every two years or so, they would have an effervescent, cheerfully lightweight single that dominated the airwaves all summer and well into the fall, with an equally fizzy, catchy album to back it up. On their third album, they stumbled somewhat, at least in terms of sales, which may be due to a lack of songs as undeniable as "All Star," "Walking on the Sun," or "Till the Morning Comes," or it could be because it came out in November, and winter just isn't the time for this quintessentially Californian band. Get the Picture? also lacks an undeniable single, or even a standout track for that matter — Neil Diamond was even drafted in for "You Are My Number One," to no avail — but it doesn't really matter, because the mood is bright, the tone is bright, and the music sounds sunny. If nothing really catches hold as a song, there's still a lot of tuneful, appealing material here, and it functions well as a party album for those hot days of summer. Whether it will be remembered beyond that is another matter entirely, but once again Smash Mouth delivers a soundtrack for the summer. They're reliable, and that's a point in their favor. [The U.K. edition included a bonus track.]

Biography

Formed: 1994 in San Jose, CA

Genre: Alternative

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

A novelty rock band in the same vein as Presidents of the United States of America, but with surf and garage influences instead of the Presidents' punk/thrash background, Smash Mouth found a hit in 1997 with the '50s-influenced "Walkin' on the Sun." The group was formed in 1994 in San Jose, CA, by vocalist Steve Harwell, a former rapper with the group F.O.S. After that group disintegrated, he began jamming with an old friend, drummer Kevin Coleman. Harwell's former manager introduced him to guitarist...
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Get the Picture?, Smash Mouth
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