BY: Tim Shermer (twitter @tdshermer)
Los Angeles garage rock band Cherry Glazerr released their widely anticipated third full-length album Stuffed & Ready last Friday, February 1st. The record is a follow-up to 2017’s Apocalipstick, which was met with overwhelmingly positive criticism and may very well be remembered as a cult favorite of the 2010s.
Produced by Carlos de la Garza (Paramore, M83, Young the Giant), Stuffed & Ready reintroduces frontwoman Clementine Creevy in a more introspective light, while preserving the guitar-driven West Coast garage sound that has helped the band carve out an international following that stretches across the realms of pop, grunge, and everything in between.
“I’m full of the bad, bad problems, so just take me away,” sings Creevy on opening track “Ohio”, a polished ’90s-inspired jam that sets the tone for the 32-minute record much in the same way that “Told You I’d Be With the Guys” did for Apocalipstick. Creevy’s simple but agonizing poetry floats over a Pixies-esque riff held up by the band’s tightest rhythm section to date, consisting of new bassist Devin O’Brien and veteran drummer Tabor Allen. It’s unfettered nostalgia, and it’s not even three minutes long.
Of the three singles that were released leading up to Stuffed & Ready’s release, “Daddi” is the first to appear on the track list. Probably the weirdest song on the album, its intimately sarcastic verses get along well with a more sophisticated sound bordering on the minimalist. “Daddi” is followed by “Wasted Nun,” another one of the singles which was released with a music video last month. Instrumentally, “Wasted Nun” plays like a Hole song; lyrically, it’s about someone who “gets deflated by extreme self-loathing,” according to Creevy in a 2019 press release.
A less remarkable middle third of the album provides no shortage of inward-looking subject matter (“Self Explained” and “Isolation”) and features the melodic Derek Trucks-style guitar playing of Delicate Steve on “That’s Not My Real Life,” arguably the band’s most mosh-friendly track since some of the stuff on their 2014 Secretly Canadian debut Haxel Princess.
In the anthemic “Juicy Socks,” released as a single in early 2018, Creevy ditches the prevailing lyrical paradigm of self-examination in favor of politics, penning lines such as “I’m so lucky I can breathe/While the others cannot swim” and a three-word chorus complemented by guitar figures reminiscent of the Hot Fuss-era Killers. It’s Stuffed & Ready’s strongest track, and it sets up a final stretch that may fall short of Apocalipstick’s immaculate final eight minutes but doesn’t come without its moments.
Creevy puts deep-rooted catharsis on full display in the penultimate track “Stupid Fish,” singing “Maybe I’m mad ‘cause I see me in you” over noisy power chords. Of ten songs, it’s the only one that breaks the four-minute mark, culminating in the album’s only screamed line: “I see myself in you and that’s why I fucking hate you!”. This one has the makings of a setlist staple and will be a must-see live. “Stupid Fish” gives way to “Distressor,” an ode to existentialism (“Shut out the noise so I can just be”) and a proper finale to Cherry Glazerr’s most emotional release yet.
Cherry Glazerr are touring in the U.K. this week in support of Stuffed & Ready, but will be back in Philly as soon as Thursday the 14th. In lieu of Valentine’s Day plans, you can catch them (and opener Sneaks) at First Unitarian Church for only $15.
- Wasted Nun
- That’s Not My Real Life
- Self Explained
- Juicy Socks
- Stupid Fish
The album cover (from the band’s Bandcamp)