Additional personnel: Mean Ween, Guy Heller, Larry Curtin, Scott Lowe.
In 1992, quirky and seemingly non-commercial bands were being signed to major labels by the boatload, thanks to the newfound success of alternative rock. One of the most blatantly bizarre acts to be taken under a corporate wing was Ween, a duo of Pennsylvania pranksters with a penchant for eclectic--and often wholly inappropriate--pop/rock tunes.
For the group's Elektra debut, PURE GUAVA, Dean and Gene Ween remained unapologetically weird from the get-go, as the drowsy, druggy "Little Birdy" ushers in the thoroughly skewed proceedings. While songs such as "Reggaejunkiejew," "Touch My Tooter," and "Poop Ship Destroyer" stick to sophomoric themes and a lo-fi sound, the prog-rock-like "The Stallion Pt. 3" and the (relatively) straightforward ballad "Sarah" hint at even greater things to come. PURE GUAVA's shining moments arrive in the typically oddball forms of the distorted ditty "Big Jilm," the relentless pop tune "Push th' Little Daisies" (Ween's first minor hit), and "Don't Get 2 Close (2 My Fantasy)," a giddily over-the-top, mock-stadium-rock number, replete with garish multi-tracked vocals. While the ridiculousness of this album is undeniable, so is the ever-evolving talent of Dean and Gene, who here began an impressive streak of adventurous and absurd outings that would lead to their '97 peak, THE MOLLUSK.
What the critics say...
Spin (12/92, p.94) - Recommended - "...a major label is now subsidizing their scribbles...They Might Be Giants for the REN AND STIMPY generation..."
Entertainment Weekly (12/18/92, p.59) - "...Ren and Stimpy kidnap Paul McCartney and lock him in a studio with nothing but a helium balloon and an acoustic guitar...Very, very weird, but I can't stop playing it..." - Rating: B+
Alternative Press (3/93, p.62) - "...Almost in spite of themselves Ween produce some enjoyably skewed pop...At their best Ween sound sort of like early Sebadoh: eclectic, strangely tuneful, lo-fi and absurd..."
Musician (5/93, pp.86-87) - "...Ween's technical proficiency allows them to jumpcut in style without loss of quality or focus..."
Nerve (3/93, p.64) - "...like the aural equivalent of Thorazine...there are moments of genuine beauty and emotion..."
- Little Birdy
- Tender Situation
- Stallion, The (Part 3)
- Big Jilm
- Push Th' Little Daisies
- Goin' Gets Tough From The Getgo, The
- I Play It Off Legit
- Pumpin' 4 The Man
- Flies On My Dick
- I Saw Gener Cryin' In His Sleep
- Touch My Tooter
- Mourning Glory
- Loving U Thru It All
- Hey Fat Boy (Asshole)
- Don't Get 2 Close (2 My Fantasy)
- Poop Ship Destroyer
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