Sound — 6
Come All You Madmen is the new record of LA street punks The Briggs. The sound of the album quite matches its title -- in-your-face intense music they've been crafting during the past six years and three albums. The guys were writing the tracks for Come All You Madmen while one the road and I should say that it was a festive gig! Most of the CD is very joyful, even supposedly sad and tearful Not Alone sounds like a happy anthem. Thinking how the new record should sound, the guys decided there's no need to make it sound boring and safe and pushed their own limits out of the comfort zone. As a result, listening to the album, you get an impression the guys never get upset or tired. The band manages to make punk out of folk -- endless heys and hoys -- they've definitely borrowed something from the pirates. When it comes to music, you wouldn't find here anything extraordinary -- the chords and tracks' structures are pretty predictable. There are a few pretentious guitar solos -- like in Charge Into The Sun and Bloody Minds, but nothing impressive. The tracks have all kinds of catchy features -- even the claps instead of the drums in Mad Men.
Lyrics — 5
Now we came to the most awful part of this music. I'm really sorry for the fans of the band, but there's hardly anything good to be said in this paragraph. The lyrics are as clichd as the song titles - from the moment of the album called Come All You Madmen predictably starts with the track Mad Men, the similar way in continues -- This Is L.A., Not Alone, Oblivion. The guys try to touch all popular subjects, such as politics (So farewell to the king, farewell to the throne / These are the strangest times I've ever known. in Mad Men), love relationship (What Was I Thinking), tribute to their city (This Is L.A. our city, our home / Los Angeles we'll never walk alone in This Is L.A.). Unfortunately somebody else has already sung about each one of these subjects and they did it better. Vocals are not better than the lyrics. I bet you sing as good as Joey LaRocca even if the only place you dare to sign in is your shower. Yell loud, louder, even louder -- that's the formula of LaRocca's singing. But there's one advantage in this -- singing along you wouldn't feel guilty for spoiling the song with your vocals.
Overall Impression — 6
All the record is so intense and monotonous at the sane time, you feel exhausted after listening to it. For a sophisticated listener it would be a nightmare to get to the end the CD. The music is plain and raw and makes you wonder if they even made a couple of takes when recording. The biggest wonder of all of it is of course Joey LaRocca's ignorant signing. He started as the band's drummer and I think he sounded much better behind the drum set. The music would be a perfect fit for a party with a lot of booze as it all pretty much sounds like a bunch of guys yelling during a drunken brawl. Sing-along and yell-along are very welcomed.