Less Than Jake


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Made to resemble sitting idly on the couch and flipping randomly through television stations, Less Than Jake's TV/EP is an 11-minute schizophrenic flurry of TV theme songs and commercials set to the tune of third wave ska. They attack childhood favorites across multiple generations -- Scooby-Doo, Diff'rent Strokes, That '70s Show, iCarly, SpongeBob SquarePants, etc. -- so that all of their fans feel included, and throw in extra fun with random ads for Pac Man cereal, FreeCreditReport.com, and a 20-second hardcore nod to the Big Mac. The band wanted the EP to feel like the aural equivalent of channel surfing, but unfortunately, they may have achieved that feeling a little too well. Only three of the 16 tracks break the one-minute mark, so even if the songs are as fun and catchy as ska-punk covers tend to be, they're barely around long enough to register. As such, the album leaves listeners with that same unsatisfied feeling that comes after 15 minutes of pointing the remote at the TV screen without finding anything that grabs your attention for more than a minute or two. Ultimately, the EP is fast and fun, but its songs are so fleeting that even if the concept is a cool idea, the end result is too disjointed to be anything more than a one-listen novelty.

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