I wish I could be more forgiving of this album, with Rancid being one of the bands I love and also respect from a musical point of view – Matt Freeman being one of the finest bass players of this, or any, generation. (Feel free to decry my opinions here if you wish, but he is. Fact.)
Unfortunately, this album just lacks in all the ways that you expect a Rancid album to shine. The rawness is gone, replaced with an overproduced sheen that was last seen on Indestructables. The dirty, harsh verses and choruses have been removed and a clean cut, poppy sounding structure have been put in their rightful places.
I can’t be entirely harsh on the album. In places there are sounds of the classic Rancid genius and even some Op Ivy influence on one track (I won’t tell you which, you’ll hear it when you get there) and lyrically it still, on the whole, stands up well, with Tim Armstrong’s brand of storytelling at least redeeming it slightly. Even with this, though, I still found it a struggle to make it through the entire album
Overall though, I really was disappointed with this album.
There are no outstanding songs on there and it’s far too overproduced, losing the whole Rancid feel.