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Shark Pants - Porno Snakehead CD Recess 083

I saw Shark Pants play in Torrance last year. They were sandwiched between two of my favorite bands: the Knockout Pills and Toys That Kill. Much to my surprise, Shark Pants stole the show. No disrespect to the Knockout Pills and Toys That Kill; they were both awesome, but I expected them to be awesome. I didn’t expect anything out of Shark Pants and they blew me away. It was a solid wall of sound that carried with it all of what I love about punk rock from Tucson: the noisy insanity of The Blacks, the trashy humor of the Weird Lovemakers, sneaky melodies like the Knockout Pills. Beyond all of this, Shark Pants seemed to simultaneously explode and keep shit tight as hell. That night in Torrance still ranks among my all-time favorite shows. I think of it so fondly that any Shark Pants album would have a tough act to follow. For me to fully endorse Porno Snakehead, Shark Pants would have to take all the energy and rock from their live show and capture it into plastic. That’s a pretty tough thing to ask of any band. Still, at first, it seemed as if Shark Pants were equal to the task. The first four songs explode out of the speakers like free beer and 2 AM promises. I thought we had a classic in the making. Then, “Later Alligator” takes its turn as the fifth song on the album, and, through some inexplicable force of nature, someone in Shark Pants starts screaming like Robert Plant “Baby, baby, baby (keep repeating).” And it bummed me out so much that I almost couldn’t listen to the next song. In fact, I get so mad every time I hear those baby, baby, babies that I can’t seem to enjoy the last four songs, though they do have all the rock I’d hoped for. In fact, this album is about seven baby, baby, babies from being perfect. But seven baby, baby, babies is a lot, especially when they’re right in the goddamn middle of everything, goddamn it. I think I’m just gonna burn the first four songs and the last four songs onto a CD of my own and start telling people that I have the elusive Shark Pants demo and that it’s way better than Porno Snakehead. –Sean Carswell (Recess)