Chomp's "Buddha Jabba Momma"
- Article by: Erin Manning
- Posted: 08/28/2012
Cloud Nothings members (Joe Boyer and Jayson Gerycz) have teamed up with Total Babes’ Chris Brown to form a new indie rock supergroup, Chomp, (and we’re happy to say they haven’t bitten off more than they can chew). Originally intended as a vehicle to release guitarist Joe Boyer’s solo recordings, the trio joined forces in between tour dates to record Buddha Jabba Momma (9/18/12, Exit Stencil Recordings).
The result is a set of sundry punk-pop songs that devour the classic American music spectrum with one big bite. Unified by lo-fi production and unusually strong songwriting, Chomp combines the best elements of classic punk, metal, rock and pop and wraps them up in an unpredictable little package that will delight those who are tired of listening to today’s flavor-of-the-week rock bands.
Vibrant pop hooks are the driving force behind the album, which are enhanced by constant detours into every definitive genre imaginable. In other words, it’s like listening to all the colors of the rainbow – or maybe taking speed, sitting on a rainbow and then watching Skittles pop out.
Maybe it’s the resplendent surf pop tint on tracks like “Witch Hunt,” and “Hammers and Nails,” which begins with rockabilly guitars before berating feedback and atonal screaming take over, only to wind up in a Baroque-pop chorus tag that sounds like the Lamb Chop’s Play-Along closer, “The Song That Doesn’t End.” Thankfully, the song does end at a proper length, finished off by a fade into surf pop ether.
That gustiness is carried on throughout “Done Waiting” and “Fresh Wounds,” the former brandishing, (dare we say it), musical theatre melodies and doo-wop ooh’s while its counterpart bounces in with an almost-sing-song-y intro and robotic toy-beeping instruments that probably belonged to an ‘80s arcade game at some point.
The album standouts simultaneously capture indie rock at its finest and ‘90s pop-rock from bands that are still around today. “Mission Demolition” calls forth No Doubt, Weezer and CAKE with dark, singable verses and an uplifting chorus, all atop a frisky bass line. Arctic Monkeys and JEFF The Brotherhood could admiringly stand by before The Rembrandts would have their moment to bask in the Friends theme-reminiscence of “Throw Out Your Wish List,” mucked up with distorted guitars and fuzzy vocals.
At times, Chomp runs the risk of venturing too close to the ‘90s “punk” of bands like All American Rejects and Sum 41, but mostly, the gifted band members demonstrate their varied influences, as well as what can happen when some actual thought is put into songwriting. All in all, Buddha Jabba Momma gives us something satisfying to chomp on.