Crazy talented, and under-the-radar superstars Me First and the Gimme Gimmes new album is set to drop very very soon. The punk superstar outfit come this time toting Diva songs, with the aptly titled ‘Are We Not Men? We Are Diva!’
For those that are horrifyingly unaware, Me First and the Gimme Gimmes are a punk covers band made up of: Lagwagon frontman Joey Cape on the guitar, Shiflett brother (and Foo Fighter) Chris Shiflett on the other guitar, Lagwagon drummer and Fat Wreck utility superhero Dave Raun on the skins, and are rounded out by Fat Wreck-head-honcho/NOFX main-dude Fat Mike, and incomparable crooner Spike Slawson.
In the past, The Gimmes have tackled such disparate genres as Motown, country, show tunes and even Japanese pop (sung in actual Japanese!) but none of that enabled them to truly soar as high above the eagles as they desired, feeling the wind of other, lesser bands beneath their wings.
So this time, the Fat (Wreck) Five decided to take on the un-take-on-able, and hit us with cuts from the likes of Celine (gasp!) Christina (Sigh!) and Paula Abdul (oh no you di’int!) among others. And as Spike’s baritone somehow manages to make Whitney Houston’s (Dolly Parton-penned) theme song to ‘The Bodyguard’ even more EPIC, you will be moved to tears. And you will find joy.
These are tunes that can be appreciated by different ears. The older listener can take the tracks as a fun reminiscent twist, the twenty-somethings can hear classic songs made cool, and the young can get to know the classics via these refreshed great cool new covers. ‘My Heart Will Go On’ initially is unrecognisable, its Jack and Roses story gone country! True punk fans will realise this track has previously been punked up, when New Found Glory did it for their movies album, so with this twist the ever surprising Gimmes do an about-turn and throw us for a loop.
Another lovingly planned incorporation into the album is Cher’s ‘Believe’, and not only is The Gimmes version rocked up, and energetic, like lighting in a bottle- but their attention to detail goes down to the vocal reverb, which cannot fail to break a smile on the most serious of faces.
The biggest surprise on the album is Spikes Ukulele cover of Madonna’s ‘Crazy For You’ which is genuinely touching, tear-jerking and love (for Spike) inducing..
From the mouth of the converted, if you love them on record- and you will- you won’t believe the energy of their live show, if you see one band live in your life it should unquestionably be The Gimmes. Never far from a tour, keep your eyes peeled for a show, and check them out asap, it’s one helluva good time.
1. I Will Survive (Gloria Gaynor)
2. Straight Up (Paula Abdul)
3. Believe (Cher)
4. Beautiful (Christina Aguilera)
5. My Heart Will Go On (Celine Dion)
6. I Will Always Love You (Whitney Houston)
7. Top of the World (The Carpenters)
8. Speechless (Lady Gaga)
9. Karma Chameleon (Culture Club)
10. Crazy for You (Madonna)
11. On the Radio (Donna Summer)
12. The Way We Were (Barbra Streisand)