Oddities, Abnormalities and Curiosities

Oddities, Abnormalities and Curiosities is the sixth studio album by American hardcore punk band Circle Jerks, released June 20, 1995 by Polygram Records. It is the band's last studio album to date.

Oddities, Abnormalities and Curiosities
Oddities abnormalities curiosities.jpg
Studio album by
ReleasedJune 20, 1995
Recorded1995
GenrePunk rock
Length34:21
LabelPolygram
ProducerNiko Bolas
Circle Jerks chronology
Gig
(1992)
Oddities, Abnormalities and Curiosities
(1995)
Professional ratings
Review scores
SourceRating
AllMusic3/5 stars[1]

Oddities, Abnormalities and Curiosities was the band's only full-length studio recording since their 1990 disbandment and 1994 reformation, and also their only release on a major label. The reunion of the Circle Jerks did not last; after several internal problems and guitarist Greg Hetson's involvement with Bad Religion, they split up again but have since reunited on numerous occasions. The album is out of print.

BackgroundEdit

The album was produced by Niko Bolas, known for his work with Neil Young, Warren Zevon, Melissa Etheridge and Kiss.

"I Wanna Destroy You," a cover of a song by the Soft Boys, featured backing vocals from pop singer/songwriter Deborah Gibson, who had just finished a solo album with the same producer the Circle Jerks were using. Gibson later made a surprise appearance at a Circle Jerks performance at punk mecca CBGB to perform the song with the band. The video for the song was also featured on an episode of Beavis and Butt-Head.

The lyrics for "Dog" were taken directly from the opening monologue of the 1985 Lasse Hallström film My Life as a Dog, and referenced Soviet space dog Laika.

The cover art is a distorted photo of microcephalic circus performers Zip and Pip (Elvira and Jenny Lee Snow), who were famed for their roles in the controversial 1932 MGM film Freaks.

Track listingEdit

  1. "Teenage Electric" – 2:44
  2. "Anxious Boy" – 2:06
  3. "22" – 2:42
  4. "Shining Through the Door" – 3:01
  5. "I Wanna Destroy You" (The Soft Boys) – 3:05
  6. "Sinking Ship" – 3:45
  7. "Brick" – 2:14
  8. "Fable" – 3:37
  9. "Dog" – 2:53
  10. "Grey Life" – 2:48
  11. "Exhaust Breath" – 3:00
  12. "Career Day" – 2:23

Release and receptionEdit

In an AllMusic review, Paul Tinelli says "Legendary L.A. hardcore punk band the Circle Jerks change their approach a bit on their major-label debut, Oddities, Abnormalities and Curiosities. The album contains 12 songs that lean more toward a punk-inspired hard rock approach than their earlier hardcore sound. The tracks on this effort are also longer than many of their earlier recordings. Compared to their early classic "In Your Eyes," which runs all of 46 seconds, "Sinking Ship," at three minutes and 48 seconds, is practically an epic. This may be a change of pace, but it isn't necessarily a bad thing. This set still displays plenty of the trademarks that make the Circle Jerks so endearing, including Keith Morris' distinct howling vocal style, Greg Hetson's great guitar work, and their unmistakable sense of humor. Nowhere on this album, or possibly in the band's entire career, has their sense of humor been so prominently on display than on their cover of the Soft Boys' "I Wanna Destroy You," which features guest vocals by none other than former teen queen Debbie Gibson. This collaboration is not only brilliant but could only be pulled off by the Circle Jerks. "22," "Teenage Electric," and "Fable" are straightforward rockers that set the tone for rest of the album. Although the mainstream sound and more polished production may alienate a few early fans who are looking for something more hardcore, this is an excellent hard rock album with few weak spots along the way.".[2]

PersonnelEdit


ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ Tinelli, Paul. Oddities, Abnormalities and Curiosities at AllMusic. Retrieved January 27, 2012.
  2. ^ Tinelli, Paul. "Oddities, Abnormalities and Curiosities - Circle Jerks". allmusic.com. Retrieved 13 June 2019.