Album: Andrew WK

I Get Wet, Mercury
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The Independent Culture

Am I missing something here? The American newcomer Andrew WK was recently accorded the unique distinction of two NME front covers in the same week, hailed, with no discernible trace of irony, as being "the saviour of music" and "bigger than Jesus". Which is rather overstating the case for what is probably the most dismal, unimaginative, corporate-sounding hard-rock album you'll hear this year. I Get Wet is a sort of kiddies' version of heavy rock, like what Pete Waterman might come up with if he imagined himself to be Jim (Meatloaf) Steinman: an over-produced extension of the Eighties' low-brow, bubble-permed techno-metal, veneered with the brittle, synthetic lustre of Sigue Sigue Sputnik, and featuring mainly WK's raw-throated exhortations to "party!" – though with none of the sly wit that, say, the Beastie Boys once brought to the subject. Songs such as "Party Hard", "Fun Night", "It's Time to Party" and "Party Til You Puke" – you get the idea – simply reduce the glorious language of rock'n'roll to a few stock phrases, chanted kindergarten-style until the track ends; even Beavis and Butt-head would find them an insult to their intelligence. Then again, if "Ready to Die" is any indication of Andrew's deeper thoughts, it's just as well that he sticks to partying: am I alone in thinking it an act of unforgivably reckless cynicism for a major, multinational corporation to release a record containing the chant: "We made a sacrifice/ And now it's time to take your life/ You better get ready to die", at a time such as this? What a WKer!

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