Sum 41

Chuck


Originally released: 2004
Universal Music Group

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On previous albums, Canadian foursome Sum 41 developed a reputation for potty-mouth lyrics and faux hip-hop posturing. It was funny, for a minute. Now, two years after the release of its last studio effort, Does This Look Infected?, the band shows signs of maturity: Sum 41 are less sophomoric, even as they still look to their younger years for musical inspiration. Equal parts Metallica metal riffery, Blink-182 pop hooks and Social Distortion meathead appeal, Chuck's heavy melodies find a balance between ADD guitar wank and next year's prom-night hit. When the band brings it all together for a moment of clarity, as on the teen anthem "Pieces" (which begs for an acoustic-session makeover), you can practically hear the zippers coming down in the back seat. Like the best metal bands, Sum 41 mix it up, segueing from hard to girl-approved sensitive (the epic ballad "No Reason") on a dime. With Chuck, Sum 41 have pulled off a truly impressive knucklehead stunt: They've managed to grow up a little and still have something to say.

SHIRLEY HALPERIN
(Posted Oct 28, 2004)




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