the untimely death of D. Boon in 1985, Minutemen bandmates
George Hurley and Mike Watt decided to call it quits
and would've packed it up if it weren't for guitarist
and fan Ed Fromohio. Out of the ashes of the Minutemen's
unfortunate demise rose fIREHOSE.
can tell you this right now: fIREHOSE is not the Minutemen.
Even though they contained two of the same members,
they were two completely seperate musical entities.
fIREHOSE was a considerable step down in every aspect;
the political messages of D. Boon's abstract songwriting
had all but vanished, Mike Watt toned his funk bass
attack down substantially, and Hurley, for the most
part, relinquished his offbeat, hyperactive drumming.
fIREHOSE removed the previous band's funk edge almost
entirely and replaced it with straight-up rock elements.
every song on this album is good for one reason or another.
"Riddle of the Eighties", "In My Mind",
and "Liberty for Our Friend" are all top cuts
with melodic, nostalgia inducing hooks and lyrics. "What
Gets Heard" introduces the listener to Mike Watt,
who lays down an excellent bassline that's so typical
of him, and takes over on vocal duty. George Hurley
has his moments of glory on two pure drum solos, "Let
the Drummer Have Some" and "'nuf That Shit,
George". The rest of the album relies mainly on
Ed's upbeat songwriting and pleasing guitar riffage.
simple songs about life in general are good listening.
Composed of three excellent musicians, the band manages
to stay away from any overtly political messages or
statements and instead simply concentrates on making
consistently good music. That's what it's all about
anyway, isn't it?