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The Offspring: Americana

It could be argued that Warrant's Cherry Pie was a genre-killing album, a nadir that sunk so low, it forced the general public to abandon the like-minded cheese-metal that preceded it. It should also be argued that The Offspring's execrable Americana will permanently wipe out pop-punk as we know it. Like Cherry Pie, it takes its already-struggling genre and drags it to the depths of self-parody, with one monumentally obnoxious, cheesy, calculated bit of pabulum after another. This hasn't always been the case: On its first few albums, The Offspring delivered some giddily entertaining speedball punk, including a few of-the-moment hits ("Come Out And Play," "Self Esteem"). Then, on 1997's Ixnay On The Hombre, the bottom started to drop out. After all, what could be worse than that album's smash single "Gone Away," which hearkened back to the glory days of Winger—or, at the very least, Candlebox? Answer: just about every fucking song on Americana, a wretched morass of bad metal ("No Brakes"), dumb novelty songs ("Pretty Fly (For A White Guy)," with Dexter Holland singing like "Weird Al" Yankovic at his most adenoidal), and a wacky cover of "Feelings" that sounds eerily like the handiwork of Ugly Kid Joe. All in all, it's an embarrassing waste of some fine Frank Kozik cover art. Buy the poster instead.

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