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Grand Slam

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Album Review

Grand Slam largely avoids the thrashing, distortion-laced pop that characterized Spiderbait's earlier albums, and instead elaborates on the random, cheerful experiments begun on Ivy & the Big Apples. Sure "Shazam" and "King of the Northern" feature the band's typically harsh guitar, grating vocals, and driving base and drum lines, but the rest of the album is surprisingly diverse — ranging from groovy space funk ("Cracker"), to dreamy exotica ("Bessy's Last Journey" and "Buster"), to cheerful, unabashed pop ("Glockenpop" and "Stevie"). "Tallygaroopna" and the synthesized strings and evocative lyrics of "By the Time I Got to Howlong" even border on folk. Most surprising, perhaps, is how well they succeed. The best songs, such as the superb "Glockenpop," feature bassist Janet English on lead vocals, whose sweet voice offers a colorful counterpoise to Mark Maher's often-monotonous screech. Unlike earlier albums, she appears on nearly half the tracks. Maher himself shines on the poetic "Howlong," on which he exhibits the full extent of his (meager) vocal range (though one wishes he didn't go for the high notes). Overall, the album does have a few duds, and at times the choruses of even the best songs sound strained and tense. Predictably, it also lacks some of the bite and intensity of past albums. But they've lost nothing of their vitality, and what is lost in bluntness is gained in nuance and maturity — all of which make Grand Slam Spiderbait's most listenable, adventurous, and richly textured album to date.

Customer Reviews


It's the answer to everything.

A good album

Brings back memories when I was playing little big planet on the psp. The songs have a unique style to them I can't even describe.


Genre: Alternative

Years Active: '00s

Three-piece thrash pop group Spiderbait are one of Australia's most distinctive and popular bands of the '90s and 2000s, a group that almost has to be seen live to appreciate their uniqueness. Drummer Mark Maher (or "Kram") is the group's main vocalist. His drums are never set up on a rise, but sit on an equal level with the other bandmembers, bass player Janet English, who shares some of the lead vocals, and guitarist Damien Whity ("Whit"). All three hail from Finley, a small town with a population...
Full Bio
Grand Slam, Spiderbait
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Customer Ratings