Samiam Orphan Works

Samiam Orphan Works
The situation that befell spiritually driven punks Samiam is disheartening: scooped up during the majors' early '90s independent feeding frenzy, yet unceremoniously dumped when sales didn't meet expectations. Still, their legacy has lasted much longer than hoped for thanks to that opportunity. Creating revered albums such as Clumsy and You Are Freaking Me Out in the mid-'90s ensured the quintet would continue to record and issue music well into this decade. At that, Orphan Works endeavours to shine some fresh light on that pivotal era in the band's history by unearthing outtakes from those two revered recordings. Familiar yet fresh, much of the album reiterates just how this music is created by people who clearly took the lessons of Black Francis and Tom Waits to heart, yet married them with the influence of punk acts such as the Ramones, X and more. The results are fiendishly poppy tunes with enough bite to feel almost decadent; they're addictive and upbeat, yet modestly melancholy. Although we know much of Orphan Works' feeder albums, these alternate cuts to favourite tracks instantly prove there's more to Samiam than a couple of modest hits fading with time. While far from reaching the point of whiny self-indulgence that became emo, Orphan Works asserts Samiam's impact on the world of sentimental punk. (No Idea)