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Wednesday, July 9, 2008

The Best Thing Jawbreaker Ever Did Was Break Up

posted by on July 9 at 15:05 PM

Okay, so that’s not entirely true. It’s very possible that if Jawbreaker stayed together, they would’ve continued to release really, really great records. But it’s also possible that if they stayed together, they would’ve started to suck and it would’ve tainted my image of them and instead of praising Jawbreaker and getting stoked for a (possible) reunion, I’d be sighing and wondering why they’re still making music at all (cough cough, Weezer, cough cough).

That would be so awful.

So this morning I was thinking about the bands that I wish would’ve gone the way of Jawbkreaker—bands that were great, showed a lot of promise, and then started to suck. Jimmy Eat World came to mind. Bleed American (AKA their self-titled record) was a really solid pop record, but it didn’t have the same anthemic, magnetic quality that Clarity still has. And Futures was just bad. And their latest? Forgiveable but unmemorable songs about dancing alone in your bedroom. So sad. If they had quit after Bleed American, taken a few years off, and then toured again, then I’d be stoked for their upcoming show at the Showbox SoDo (July 15th). But they didn’t, and I’m not.

Weezer the other obvious example. Obviously.

I polled a few friends to see what they had to say. On the “should’ve called it quits” list: Alkaline Trio, Metallica, Weezer, Public Enemy, Hella, Saves the Day, Belle & Sebastian, Cave In, Metallica again, Green Day, and NIN.

So maybe, instead of cursing the Jawbreaker break-up for years, I should’ve been thanking them. I got to keep their great records, they got to keep their great reputation—everyone wins.

Wish I could say the same for Jimmy Eat World.

Now here’s the Alkaline Trio video for “Goodbye Forever.” Look at Skiba! He looks like a lil’ baby! Awe!

RSS icon Comments


Wait, Cave In? No way, they went out at the top of their game! They managed to converge (no pun intended) on a perfect blend of melodic pop and heavy guitar riffage with Jupiter & Antenna. Pitch Perfect Black had some great stuff too, for being a sort of thrown-together mishmash.

Posted by laterite | July 9, 2008 4:00 PM

Megan! Make a post about Jawbreaker! Charles! Overthink something! Dan! Post a picture of soccerplayer naked accompanying a post about a pitbull eatng a baby!

Posted by Make Your Own Slog Page! Ask Me How. | July 9, 2008 5:11 PM

Antenna blew. Perfect Pitch Black was alright, but Cave In really should have quit after Jupiter.

Posted by bunnypuncher | July 9, 2008 8:56 PM

The song is "Goodbye Forever"

Posted by fettig | July 9, 2008 9:05 PM

@4 I knew that. And I fixed it. Thanks!

Posted by Megan Seling | July 9, 2008 9:20 PM

The last couple songs Cave In wrote with the drummer from Converge were fucking incredible. If anyone thinks they should have quit after Jupiter, these songs might change your mind.

Posted by Erick | July 10, 2008 12:24 AM

Alkaline Trio totally should have stopped after their split with Hot Water Music. I still really like everything they did on that split and everything before it. After that record, when they stopped whining about cigarettes and started worshiping blood, I just couldn't handle them any more.

Posted by Little Red Ryan Hood | July 10, 2008 11:24 AM

And it needs to be said again... Metallica. Jesus they should have called it a day when Cliff died.

I've also got to say, Jawbreaker put out one too many albums, but Dear You does end the career with a soft landing, so I guess it worked out (in my head).

There's countless bands that sprang from from the late-70s punk scene, only to evolve (for the worse) as music changed, but I guess "no, really, their first record is good" bands don't count.

Come to think of it, I'm having a tough time thinking of bands that didn't deviate much from their original style, they just got worse.

In retrospect, does anyone really like the last Nirvana record? I don't even think I've ever heard it all the way through. And while not bad by any means, I don't think the Melvins have done anything worth adding to the collection since Lysol.

Posted by Dougsf | July 10, 2008 6:04 PM

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