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Album Review

Bim Skala Bim's tenth album finds the Boston-based ska band continuing in its well-established neo-trad ska sound: lots of organ, lots of horns, tempos that have slowed down a bit from its early years in the wake of the first wave of ska-punk, but still brisk and exciting. The formula hasn't changed that much, but the band's songwriting chops have improved quite a bit since the days of "Fathead" and "Gopher Rodeo." In fact, if Krinkle has a significant flaw, it's the album's very consistency — the fact that while there are no particularly weak tracks (though "Food for Soul" is a just a bit overlong), there are also none that really stand out as something special. That consistency does make for a generally agreeable listening experience, however, and on nicely crafted pop-ska tunes like "Hardest of the Parts," "Dislexic" (misspelled on purpose, no doubt), and the old-fashioned rocksteady love song "Hey Girl," new listeners will find their interest piqued and old fans will be reminded of what turned them on to this band lo these 20 years ago. Recommended.


Formed: 1983 in Boston, MA

Genre: Rock

Years Active: '80s, '90s, '00s

Bim Skala Bim was one of America's initial responses to Britain's 2-Tone movement in the early '80s. Also inspired by the Clash, UB40 and Bob Marley, the group has also become one of the longest-lasting ska groups in America and has the tightest lineup. Formed in Boston in 1983 by vocalist Dan Vitale and bassist Mark Ferranti, Bim Skala Bim's lineup has been unchanged since 1989, presently including Vitale and Ferranti plus drummer Jim Arhelger, percussionist Rick Barry, keyboard player John Cameron,...
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Krinkle, Bim Skala Bim
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