Frogstomp review by Silverchair

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  • Released: Jun 20, 1995
  • Sound: 8
  • Lyrics: 8
  • Overall Impression: 10
  • Reviewer's score: 8.7 Superb
  • Users' score: 9.2 (15 votes)
Silverchair: Frogstomp

Sound — 8
Whether you were still mourning the death of Kurt Cobain or following the endeavours of Pearl Jam, it is impossible to forget the honest, clear and aggressive cries of Silverchair's debut album Frogstomp. What amazes most about Frogstomp is not the brilliance of the album: it is the simple fact that many of the featured songs were written when the boys were a tender fourteen years old. Frogstomp revealed a maturity about Silverchair, particulary in the singing and songwriting of frontman Daniel Johns, which has yet to be equally matched in any teenage rock outfit since it's release. However, the album alone produces some memorable sounds. The guitars sound embracingly distorted, the drums crash and smash with absolute thunder and Daniel Johns voice sounds as if he could be in his mid-twenties. Many of the tunes are catchy and 'Tomorrow' was one of the biggest selling Australian singles of all time, making number one on the 'Triple J Hottest 100'. Possibly the best song on the album is the overwhelming 'Isreal's Son': an angry anthem of hate which reaches it's climax with several gutteral screams from Johns in a moment which can only be described as rock and roll gold.

Lyrics — 8
The lyrical side of Frogstomp is promising. It is pleasing to note that there are no corny teenage witcisms about being "Skater Dudes," which is usually the case with most young artists (think Avril Lavinge's "Sk8er Boi") and some of the lyrics contain some substance. In particular "Isreal's Son" and "Faultline" create powerful images. "Faultline" was inspired by the famous Newcastle earthquake and tells the story of separated friends who are unable to be united by the earthquake. Unlike John's later lyrical style, which at times can be oblique, the lyrics on Frogstomp are honest and simple. However, John's sometimes struggles to say anything in some of his songs. This is particularly evident in the slower "Shade" where John's comments: "If you're abused, find someone to help you" and then goes on to blantantly say "Don't go hiding in the shade." These minor glitches do not taint the overall effect of the album

Overall Impression — 10
Overall, Frogstomp is a terrific album. The songs do not become tiresome or simplistic after many listens. The initial amazement does not wear off and the album offers much playback. The songs link and tie in greatly with one another. It is better not to think of this album as grunge as it offers so much more than that. It is an example of a classic album by a great Australian band.

7 comments sorted by best / new / date

    Grunge _hippie
    Israel's Son Is an amazing post grunge song suicidal dream is also great i cant believe theys guys made it in highschool.
    I've had this album since I was eight, I LOVE IT! I stopped listening to it for a while, and picked it up again lately,its amazing! Great album, definitely Silverchair's best. Silverchair have unfortunately succumbed, like many bands, to genre pressure. I.e- Bands such as Fall Out Boy and Good Charlotte were once heavier, Alternative or punk bands, and they have recently transformed into pop-punk phenomenons, abandoning their stylistic roots and going for the radio friendly pop-ish stuff. I find this happening a lot in music these days. It's a shame.
    ezza61 wrote: My favs - Tomorrow, Pure Massacre and Shade. Great, great album.
    word. i remember when i had street fighter 2: the animated movie and i heard "Israel's Son" and I always hummed the words cuz i dint know the lyrics, i was probably 6 or 7. then maybe when i was in junior high, i randomly stumbled across Silverchair when my neighbor wanted to jam to "Pure Massacre", i'd never heard it, he skipped the first track and it was like "holy shit... that's that band!" I've loved Frogstomp and Freak Show ever since. Neon Ballroom was decent, but so weird. Then the rest just sucked balls. And what's sad is that they'll never go back to the old days or improve on being a better hard rock band.
    Mate, I couldn't have said it better myself. All true. Listening to Israel's Son as I type this, stereo turned to the max! Cheers