Pure Party Pleasure with Andrew W.K.
Mike Hess
6/16/2002 8:09:04 PM

It’s been quite some time since an album has been so infectious, party-driven and all-out-fun as the Andrew WK’s I Get Wet [Island Records]. Think of the Beastie Boys' License to Ill album beefed up with some crunchy guitars and produced by a classically trained pianist (Andrew himself). Be prepared to crack open a beer, raise your fist in the air, and let out a scream for good old rock n roll when you give a listen to Andrew W.K.

W.K. – short for Wilkes-Krier, not White Killer, Wants Kicks, Widow Kreator and so on as fans like to believe – is in fact all about partying. Look no further than the brilliantly crafted cover, which dons a shot of W.K. in front of a black backdrop, bleeding from the nose, with the blood trail running down his throat and painting his white t-shirt red. It’s so dark and intriguing that it made Dave Grohl call it the sexiest photo of a man he’s ever seen, and it’s by far one of the best album covers ever mass produced. As for the blood, you can thank a concrete cinderblock bash to the face for the crimson.

Party, party, party. Three out of 12 songs actually contain the word, including his stupidly catchy anthem “Party Hard”, a death-metal-meets-Menudo style protest against everything that holds back pure human fun. “We will never listen to your rules… know what we want, and we’ll get it from you. We do what we like, and we like what we do,” rings the bridge, and if your fist isn’t pumping once the chorus drops, please stop reading this. Now.

This music hits the soul of every fun-loving music fan. The vibe is more infectious than airborne Ebola, and it resonates nearly from start to finish. Andrew’s nod to NYC (track 6 is aptly titled “I Love NYC”) is true-to-heart, as the Detroit native is a transplanted New Yorker, though he now resides in Tampa, Fl. Thoughts of Joan Jett’s “I Love Rock and Roll” come to mind, and yep, Andrew sure does.

Continuing the best chunk of the cd (tracks 6-8), “She is Beautiful” should without a doubt be W.K.’s next single release. Based on a girl that Andrew never mustered up the courage to talk to, the song is quirky, catchy and crunchy, and comes off without the sap-and-crap that one would expect from a song of this nature. The picture-perfect production (rampant through the entire disc) makes this messy track sound completely organized. Keep on truckin, and “Party Til You Puke” is by far the hardest song on the album, though again the production keeps a grip on things getting overdone. Speedy, motor-mouthed guitars ring amongst space-like effects, with the raspy growl of W.K. howling “We’re not gonna die! And you can never kill us,” churning up a massive mosh of metal.

The only thought left after hearing this disc is: what the hell are you still doing here? GO PARTY!

For more on Andrew W.K., check out his website at www.andrewwk.com


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