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Keep Your Enemies Closer by The Innocent OJs

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Reviewed on 1st April 2002.


Keep Your Enemies Closer

By The Innocent OJs

As guilty as their namesake was, the Innocent OJ's are just as guilty of flagrantly flaunting their record collections in their music. This is just turned 18 Yankee Punk Rock, fuelled by hormones, alchopops and a desire to go chugga chugga at high speeds on your guitar while jumping up and down in a Korn t-shirt.

"And what the f**k is wrong with that?" I hear your newly dropped voices croak! Nowt! I answer. Had I been born 8 years later than I was, I imagine that right at this very minute I would be picking my nose and wiping it on my oversized jeans, telling my mum she didn't understand why Blink 182 were masters of their art and ignoring my dad when he says things like "I remember the Buzzcocks when Punk were Punk".

The Innocent OJ's were recently dismissed in Kerrang as Blink 182 impressionists, which personally I think is a little unfair. For starters these boys have the gain setting two notches higher and despite having a lead vocalist who sounds as if he has a post code that begins with LA as opposed to LS, the band keep it grittier and at times draw in some heavier influences. All 5 tracks rock but ironically "The obligatory mid-paced emo number" is where the band is at their strongest and "The art of plagiarism" is a fitting close.

There's no doubting this CD will appeal to the sweaty pierced teen market they are aiming at. It's tight, well played, goes full throttle, the melodies are simple, the guitar techniques are unimaginative but effective in that fast chugga chugga way and played live with the same energy then the OJ's will stand head and shoulders with the rest of them... but... and you knew there was going to be one... this can't last, or what I mean is, to take that next step there has to be a change. Despite not agreeing with Kerrang, I do see their point. At times this is music by numbers and for the Innocent OJ's to be truly outstanding they need to plough their own furrow, introduce a bit of themselves into the mix and broaden the boundaries out side of MTV2 Rocks!. If they can do that then the future will be an exciting place to be for messrs Tits, Tin, Nanny and Slakk!



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