I Was a Teenage Tree


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I Was a Teenage Tree Review

by David Gonzales

In 1999, Philippine rock band Teeth released I Was a Teenage Tree, the band's third full-length album. Unfortunately, I Was a Teenage Tree furthers the artistic decline that began with the group's second album, Time Machine, in 1997. Teenage Tree is devoid of interesting ideas, and seems a rehash of previously explored territory done just as weakly on Time Machine. The album was produced by Rico Blanco, talented member of popular Philippine rock band RiverMaya, but his trademark creativity isn't in evidence here. As with Time Machine, I Was a Teenage Tree is permeated with reverb-drenched guitar, which doesn't allow much room for diversity. Some attempt is made, though, in the acoustic beginning of "We Are the Same," which also contains intriguing keyboards. Unlike the band's first album (1995's Teeth, which contained many catchy, melodic songs presented within a hard rock context), there isn't much enjoyable melody to be heard on I Was a Teenage Tree. Most of the material seems redundant and pointless, heard to soporific effect on songs such as "Shooting Star," "Hyperkinesis," "Road Bends," and "Head On." One of the album's better songs is "Sorry," which contains some semblance of melody; still, the song doesn't live up to its full potential. The songs' guitar chord progressions contain more imagination and melodic flair than the songs themselves. I Was a Teenage Tree may signal the end of Teeth's career.

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