Stay Asleep


Kung Fu Records, 1999

REVIEW BY: Paul Hanson


Bigwig follows up Unmerry Melodies (Fearless Records) with my_heart_sings_the_harmony_web_ad_alt_250 Stay Asleep, a more mature sounding recording. The band toured endlessly in support of Unmerry and became a strong live band. That cohesiveness was captured in the studio while recording this CD.

Like on Unmerry, vocalist/guitarist Tom is clearly the leader of this quartet as they scorch through the 14 songs on this release. He has matured in his vocal delivery, especially on "Smile" where his voice sustains a command of the melody he is singing, especially on the lyrics, "Can you see it in my eyes?" He tells a story about his girlfriend leaving him and tweaks the story with sarcasm when he sings, "I'll go piss in her coffee pot again/ she said she's coming back/ But I know she's never coming back again."

"Sellout" changes from an anti-MTV tirade into a tirade against fans of bands that claim a band sold out. In the short, tense "Jerk" Tom sings, "What's wrong with your mind this time? What's gone wrong with your life? I'm trying to make it work, but I guess I'm too much of a jerk (that about sums it up.)"

Bigwig is too angry to be loved by mainstream America and I get the feeling the band doesn't give a damn about that. In "Numbers" Tom asks, "How can I fight for your country/ When your country won't fight for me?" In "Sellout" he asks, ""Before you open your mouth/ and say a band sold out/ Do you know what they've been through/ know what they've gone through/ to play in front of you?/ Now who's the sellout?"

Asking tough questions, but not supplying the answer. That is good because the questions make you think. Thought-provoking punk? Damn right.

Rating: A

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© 2000 Paul Hanson and The Daily Vault. All rights reserved. Review or any portion may not be reproduced without written permission. Cover art is the intellectual property of Kung Fu Records, and is used for informational purposes only.