Gob The World According To Gob

The backlash against the third record from Vancouver's kings of goof-core has come fast and furious. Accusations of sell-out paired with moans of disgust from those who would have the band stay mired in its past can be seen in fanzines and even some mainstream media outlets across North America. And all of this comes with no real good reason at all, other than finicky, holier-than-thou punk writers who want Gob to be the same immature cretins they were six years ago. Well, times change and so has Gob and it's for the better. Sure this record is different, dare I say more mature, but that's not a bad thing. Sounding like a cross between Face to Face and latter-day Jawbreaker, there is more melody, slower tempos and more grown-up lyrics, and it works. It's a natural progression, not unlike Blink 182's (come to think of it, I can understand how an 18-year-old Guttermouth fan would find it unappealing). Having redefined themselves as a slightly more serious band with the amazing How Far Shallow Takes You record, The World... is more lyrically in sync with who the Gob-sters are in 2000, as opposed to who they were in 1993. Songs like "Everyone Pushed Down," "I Hear You Calling," "144" and "Been So Long" are up-tempo numbers that feature some great vocal harmonies from Theo and Tom. And songs like "Looking for California" and "Ex-Shuffle" recall their warp speed, pop-punk roots. But they are right at home wedged in between a pseudo ballad like "Sleepyhead" (which could be compared to Blink 182's "Adam's Song") and "That's the Way," which sounds like something .38 Special would have written for some 1984 movie soundtrack. Growth and change are not always things to be feared, especially when they're a matter of simple evolution and not contrived attempts to garner radio play. (Nettwerk)