When I think of the word(s) GYMSHORTS I’m immediately sent back to seventh grade PE – sweaty balls, field hockey, and boys shoving lacrosse sticks up each other’s asses. Puberty is a strange time. I alleviated most of my confusions and frustrations with music. I listened to the Ramones and Sex Pistols, while the bullies listened to Simple Plan and Sum 41 (losers!) Look at me now, I turned out just fine, writing about rock ‘n’ roll bands like Providence, RI’s own GYMSHORTS. These GYMSHORTS do in fact bring me back to my angst filled teen years, but this time it’s actually fun!
GYMSHORTS fit into what we’re into in the KLYAM “punk slime all of the time” universe. We didn’t just say punk slime 80% of the time, punk slime when you feel like it, no, all of the time. I think these shorts get it. They hang ten on tsunamis, bust balls, stay out late, get high, rob banks, and kill their parents. They lean towards that nasty side of the garage spectrum, a spectrum/genre that has become a large part of New England music. While Atlantic Thrills take care of the fuzzy bubblegum pop, Ravi Shavi shakes your soul, kids like New Highway Hymnal and TeleVibes scrape through your brain with their blistering psych noise, GYMSHORTS continue the garage trend that Nice Guys and Miami Doritos have embodied – scummy, surly stoner rock that doesn’t give a fuck if you care about them or not. “I Wanna get highhhh and I wanna get stonedddd” See, I didn’t even know there was a difference.
No Backsies! – ohh yeah that’s the name of the album, in case you can’t read headliners – is a nine song, consistent kick in the ass, a barrage of surfy, screeching garage skunk. The music isn’t pretty or easy on the ears in any way, but it’s also not noise either. The band has their shit together, they aren’t falling apart or tripping over each other, or whatever. Perhaps, they decided to save the brown acid for another day.
GYMSHORTS aren’t doing anything revolutionary here, but who is? Some dude somewhere with a lacrosse stick up his ass doing a handstand and singing the blues. The miserable blues. And that brings me to my last point before I fucking crash. I want to go out on a strong note, I understand we all have lives outside of my ‘reviews’, I’m a professional.
MY POINT about GYMSHORTS and the ‘garage’ tag that gets slapped on their asses is that this music, despite all it’s angst and anger (the very kind I shared as a child), and lurid subject matter, it is ultimately fun and entertaining and that’s what good rock ‘n’ roll should be.There’s not enough time to be miserable and depressed, wondering why that little squeeze from down the street isn’t fucking you. This is time you could spend learning how to play pool, until you become the greatest pool player of all time, so much so that there are now lines of people waiting to fuck you that are so long that they begin all the way down the street at that little squeeze’s door step. And on the jukebox they will be blasting GYMSHORTS – “I WANT TO GO TO BEDDDDD!!!” Me too. Goodnight!
“I used to hate the smell of sweaty ball Gymshorts in the morning, now it’s the smell of victory!” – Matthew 19:19… HEY MOM, HEY DAD! THE GYMSHORTS ARE GOING ON TOUR. HOLY FUCK! NO WAYYYY…
Tour with Vulture Shit. Check it all out here including their stop at SXSW https://www.facebook.com/events/219222644932963/