Review: Evelyn O’Connell
SIMPLE Plan, the Canadian band - vocalist, Pierre Bouvier; drummer,
Chuck Comeau; bassist, David Desrosiers and guitarists, Sebastien
Lefebvre and Jeff Stinco - released No Pads, No Helmets, Just
Balls in the spring of 2002 and Still Not Getting Any…
is the follow up to their debut.
Aside from selling a couple of million albums, the group have
shared the stage with everyone from Rancid to Aerosmith; made
appearances on the Vans Warped Tour for three years running (two
as headliners), and been nominated for four MTV Video Music Awards.
Will their popularity make it to this side of the Atlantic?
“I think on the first record we just wanted to write a
pure pop-punk record, and on this one we didn’t care - we
just wanted to write good songs,” explains Comeau.
From the deeply personal story behind the album’s lead
single, Welcome To My Life, to the insanely exhilarating
guitar solo on Promise, this illustrates the band’s
approach to songwriting.
After the band wrapped their first US headlining tour last February,
Comeau and Bouvier spent three months in Vancouver writing every
single day for the new album, throwing away more ideas than they
came away with.
“At first, we had trouble coming up with stuff we loved,
so we just kept writing and writing… never giving up. After
months of doing this and pushing each other, it just came together,"
"Perfect World was one of the first good songs
that we got, and from there the songs just started coming out
of us like a waterfall.”
The track choices are very good, Me Against The World, for
the guitar rifts reminiscent of late ‘80’s rock; the
melancholic Everytime and the string section and touching
lyrics you can hear on Untitled.
Crazy chronicles the insecurities each of us go through
on a daily basis, while Perfect World struggles to make
sense out of loss.
Simple Plan are open to experimenting with the formula that made
them famous in Canada and the USA, but their biggest concern is
not letting down their fans.
“The connection between us and our fans is the most important
thing we have,” explains Desrosiers. “They’ll
ultimately be the ones who make or break our album.”
Adds Stinco: “Without them, I would probably be working
a nine-to-five job that I hate.”
The album is certainly very listenable and enjoyable, the only
fault I could possibly find is that Simple Plan, as a band, doesn’t
really give anything new to the music world - they are like most
other generic American/Canadian alternative bands that don’t
want to be labelled as punk or grunge or whatever.
If you like Good Charlotte, Sum 41 or early Green Day, then you
are bound to enjoy Simple Plan. Definitely one for the MTV generation.