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Bad Mother Trucker

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Album Review

Following a four-year recording hiatus, Ten Foot Pole comes roaring back with the sixth installment in its ongoing punk-pop project. The band has a new bass player (John Chapman, who replaces the tragically deceased Leigh Lawson), a new drummer, and a new label, but Bad Mother Trucker continues in very much the same vein as 1998's Insider: tempos alternate between fast and faster, melodies are (for the most part) catchy, and harmonies are invariably tight and sometimes even complex. Yes, it's formulaic, but all that really means is that this stuff stands or falls on its hooks, and there are hooks aplenty on Bad Mother Trucker: its opening track, "Plastic," is both bracingly aggressive and insanely catchy, as is "One Hero"; "Do It Again" features a bagpipe-flavored guitar lick that sounds like it was lifted straight off of an old Big Country album along with a sweetly harmonized chorus, and the harmonies on the Ramones-ish "I Wanna Be Alone" are also worth noting. "Happy Daze" nicely fuses metal and hardcore influences. Not every track is as good as those — "Armchair Quarterback" and "Sarah Jones" are particular disappointments — but the bright spots significantly outnumber the dim ones on this welcome return from one of punk-pop's brightest stars. Recommended.

Customer Reviews

10 feet of fun, oh my!

This album came out and then Steve was gone. Definite sing-a-long-ables on this one like the rest of 'em. Thanks doods.


Genre: Alternative

Years Active: '90s, '00s

Formerly known as Scared Straight, but wanting to have more fun than a straight-edge hardcore band, Ten Foot Pole converted into a powerful, aggressive punk rock band. While Scared Straight had releases on the Mystic Records label, Ten Foot Pole quickly came under the Epitaph umbrella, staying there until past the millennium. Co-founder Dennis Jagard was born in Northridge, CA, but grew up in Simi Valley, CA. When he was eight, his parents made him take piano lessons; by the time he was ten, music...
Full Bio
Bad Mother Trucker, Ten Foot Pole
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