December 21, 2006

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MxPx, Let It Happen
Tooth & Nail Records,2006

With the holidays necessarily come storms of reissues and remasters, and it’s really raining – the ’80s chestnut Stoneage Romeos from Hoodoo Gurus recently darkened our door thinly disguised as a newborn, but since every person on earth has nodded their head to “I Want You Back” whether they know it or not, we’ll instead tramp more obscure ground with Christian-straight-edgers M(x standing for a period because they’re punks, man)P(same thing). SoCal buzzcut-retards to a fault, MxPx are to the Descendants what Dead or Alive was to Culture Club – looks and tastes better, less filling to its own detriment. The four billion songs gathered here constitute a pre-emo bouquet of middle fingers, Mike Herrera’s well-behaved voice finding nirvana on such covers as “Oh Donna” and skate-boy sameness on pretty much everything else, but with the emo zoids slowly realizing that they’re not going to take over the planet with a clone army in which every troop has the same weakness, it’s kind of neat to think of the shadows of their predecessors looming over them, backing them into corners and methodically stomping their guts out. B-

— Eric W. Saeger