American Hi-Fi Acoustic

American Hi-Fi

Rude Records, 2016

REVIEW BY: Pete Crigler


Wow! Has it really been fifteen years since American Hi-Fi released their debut record and had a smash hit with “Flavor Of The Weak?” Well, believe, my friends, it’s true – and to celebrate, the band have re-recorded the entire record acoustically. To some, this might sound like an easy cash grab from a band people can’t believe are still together. But there are moments on here that spark and remind the listener why they liked the original record to begin with.my_heart_sings_the_harmony_web_ad_alt_250

Frontman Stacy Jones’ vocals still sound cool and make you wonder if some people ever really age. Tracks like “Surround” and “A Bigger Mood” sound a bit better with the new arrangements. “Flavor Of The Weak” doesn’t improve nor does it get sucky; it still sounds the same, basically just a fifteen-year-old throwback track.

“Hi-Fi Killers” drags a bit until Jones starts screaming near the finale and that’s when the song really picks up and comes alive. You’re not going to hear anything like that on a Simple Plan record, that’s for sure. “My Only Enemy” is my favorite track on the original disc and the new arrangement here gives it a mellower feel but the original attitude is still present and that’s all I wanted out of the acoustic treatment. The original album’s other main single “Another Perfect Day” features Jones’ former Letters To Cleo bandmate Kay Hanley on co-lead vocals, which gives the song a new touch. That track ends up being one of the best tracks here.

Overall, this is an interesting disc but it’s not enough to scream about from the rooftop. I can say that American Hi-Fi is a much better band and have done a better job with this than, let’s say, all these washed up rockers doing acoustic versions of all their biggest hits. (I’m looking at you Trapt, Everclear, and others!)

Rating: B-

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