deux revieux: some pulp’s “some pulp”

This is (hopefully) the first installment of the DEUX REVIEUX, where I’ll do a collaborative review of a piece of entertainment with a friend. My brother Carter joins me for the first DEUX REVIEUX. But is he really a friend? I often wonder.


Tonight at midnight brings the release of Some Pulp‘s first LP, which they’re selling online (name your price). A limited run physical cassette is also available for purchase for five dollars. Cassettes are “cool” and “hip”, and they make everything sound so terrible, so be sure to grab one and support the guys.

The duo that make up Some Pulp are friends of mine, so this review already naturally leans in their favor. However, to be honest, I actually “wrote off” Some Pulp in my head for a while. I’ve listened to a lot of what Graham Wakeman (and by extension Dane Hoppe) has done over the years, whether as a part of SCHOENBURG (which grew out of an earlier project called Brother Divide), his electronic side project Auspice Residens (still my favorite, despite currently minimal output), or other various projects over the years. But when Some Pulp started up, I listened to a bit of whatever existed at the time and decided “nah. not for me.”

I’ve always been a bit stubborn and choosy when it comes to music. I can’t or just don’t keep up (anymore) with the latest singles by the latest bands. These days, if I find even four new bands a year that I end up loving and dedicating time to, that’s quite alright by me – frankly that number might even be a bit high. I have some “desert island” albums that I go back to so often that’s it’s probably detrimental to my health, but I’ve always been content listening to something I like over and over and over – just ask my family and friends. So when I decided I “wasn’t really into” Some Pulp, I figured that was it. That music friend circle knows I like most of the stuff they put out, so it’s not like I’m gonna hurt their feelings, and everybody has different tastes!

But in late September, I visited the guys in Minnesota with a friend, where we got to see Some Pulp perform at a toga party house show. It was loud, and more importantly, it was a hell of a lot of fun. Dane (drums) and Graham (guitar & vocals) emerged wearing their togas, had a quick lightsaber battle, and then roared right into “Blue Pout“, one of the songs off of the new LP. The song is less than two minutes long, and my ears were already hurting half of the way in, but I remember realizing how much fun it was – not just the odd setting, and the cast of togas, but the music itself, and the energy behind it. Once that was done, they launched into “Oh Oh (Who’s Cryin’ Now)“, the single off of the new LP, and I was pretty much converted.

I’ve been listening to the new self-titled LP for just over a month now, and it’s grown on me in ways I never would have imagined. The first song, “Undone ’93 (The Tube Top Song)“, starts the album off with an energy and sound that fills me with a feeling similar to what I imagine teenagers in 1994 felt when they heard Dookie for the first time. It familiarizes you with the wall of noise you’re to expect for the next half-hour and cradles you in its arms, all the while repeatedly punching holes in your eardrums. And when that finishes, “Oh Oh” comes right around and forces you to sing along. You can’t not – I dare you to try.

If I had one bone to pick, it would be with the brevity of the album. The entire LP clocks in just short of 25 minutes, but it easily feels like 17 minutes. I’ve found myself puzzled a number of times over the past month, double-checking that there isn’t something wrong with my phone- did I accidentally skip to the end? How am I on “Teenage Mess” already? It’s the perfect closer, acting as a yang to “Undone“’s yin. When you hear those opening notes, you know the album’s on its way out, but it teases you along until the end. More please? Nope! (Well, sort of- hidden track!)

The moral of the story is – I did a boo boo. This album is fun as hell, so make sure you give it a few listens – it’s free after all, so what do you have to lose, other than 24 and a half minutes of your day? You can really hear the guys having as much fun playing as you are listening.

Don’t listen to The Black Keys. They’re assholes. Listen to Some Pulp. They’re assholes too, but they’re nice assholes.



I decided to have a little internet listening session with my younger brother Carter, who is very opinionated and “indie”. This was the first time listening through for him. Below is our live chat exchange during the listening session, with extra follow-up reviews by Carter.

Carter: actually no haha awkward he is not indie he is just fun and overall really quite a knucklehead. you ought to send him an email!
Christian: you ought to answer your texts ever
Carter: how about you just power down your PC. ***zing**

1. Undone ’93 (The Tubetop Song)

Carter: graham’s vocals remind me of a mixture of christopher owens from girls and billie joe armstrong from the green days. I like the fun little rhythmic intricacies here too.
Christian: he has the snarl of the dookie days down.
Carter: I love girls and I don’t much like green day but I like these vocals they are nice
Christian: i have a hard time thinking anyone “doesn’t really like green day” you don’t have to love them, but c’mon.
Carter: christian is a clown

CARTER’S VERDICT – though I like the vocals more elsewhere on this album, the weirdness of the riff on this one is hecks of rad. manic ending as well. strong opener. 7/10

2. Oh Oh (Who’s Cryin’ Now)

Carter: I like the guitar tone on this album. very rough and propulsive, while still melodic.
Christian: this song is catchy as hell. it’ll be in your head for a while.
Carter: vocal melodies v strong. fun and cool, sign me up.
Christian: ps you don’t have to be just nice the whole time btw
Carter: I know I am liking some pulp by the Pulps
Christian: some pups
Carter: good pups

CARTER’S VERDICT – solid track. catchy enough to probably be a single. was it a single? it might’ve even been a single. dig it dig it 8/10

3. Tell Me Ur Mine

Christian: i feel like i am listening to a weird/twisted version of GREASE every time i hear this
Carter: I can definitely feel that. not digging this track as much? not sure why really
Christian: apparently the original lyrics were “tell me once, tell me twice, get in my van”
Carter: should’ve kept that tbh
Christian: eh, kinda predatory
Carter: why couldn’t it just be a Fun Van
Christian: party van
Carter: “get in my van we have wine coolers”
Christian: ps you’re wrong- this song is very great

CARTER’S VERDICT – nice surf rockish stuff going on. I guess something about the chorus here kind of sticks in my craw. also apparently:: I have a craw?? 6/10

4. New Lame

Christian: the start of this the first time i heard it was very scary
Carter: this song is changing up in a cool way. I like how not straightforward it is. keepin’ me on my toes!
Christian: bringing the xcitement
Carter: kool riffing, wild vocals
Christian: it’s like they took a bunch of mini songs and stirred them together

CARTER’S VERDICT – really love how frequently this track jumps around and experiments/gets discordant. definitely a standout for me. 8/10

5. Take a Ride

Christian: i love that transition btw, so smooth
Carter: rad transition! didn’t expect that
Christian: i did. neener
Carter: all of these songs have been really simple and hard-hitting. I dig that. also that’s because you’ve heard it before you LOON
Christian: yeah but i could have forgotten
Carter: could I request an edited version? I could do without hearing words like fuck
Christian: ^graham? not so family friendly
Carter: SOME PULP more like SOME BAD WORDS

CARTER’S VERDICT – neat transition. cool touch. very strong chug chug chug opening after the percussion. like the harmonic tapping(?) around the second third of the track. like how aggressive the vocals get too. 8/10

6. Pizza, Pop & Cigarettes

Christian: i love this jam, the drums kill
Carter: great opening
Christian: you should really be listening to this on headphones.
Carter: I am not tho
Christian: i know
Carter: :–0
Christian: just imagine i guess
Carter: I’ve really appreciated the production here. sounds just the right amount of ruff
Christian: i have a bone to pick regarding the lack of an oxford comma, but i’ve brought that up with them before, got a lot of gibberish back
Carter: I cannot approve of anything without an oxfordian grammatical scheme
Christian: customer support from the Pulp is lacking

CARTER’S VERDICT – menacing riff!!! the jam is certainly respectable 7/10

7. Baby

Carter: good change of pace, but hmm
Christian: squealy-wealy, i like it
Carter: I do like the squeals and how it’s tuff to tell between the vocals and the guitar

CARTER’S VERDICT – sounds more like traditional doo-wops to me since the instrumentation is pretty stripped down, which I’m not the fondest of. I think the melody of the chorus is excellent tho. 7/10

8. Blue Pout

Carter: one of the bluest pouts I can think of
Christian: they opened the toga party in MN in september with this one, probably played it twice as fast. that’s fast
Carter: could see this being a good opener. liking the “ay! ay! ay!”s
Christian: very ethnic
Carter: yes Tribal even
Christian: maybeeeeee
Carter: eeee

CARTER’S VERDICT – high energy punkblast. a very blue pout. graham sounds a little post-punky at times with his yelps. this is a good, driving rocker 7/10

9. Teenage Mess

Christian: O MAN almost done
Carter: that was pretty quick! dango
Christian: right? time flies
Carter: time flies when you’re having a somepulp. some pulp more like NOT E-NUFF PULP
Christian: i don’t like pulp 🙁
Carter: yeah I tend to go for low pulp varieties of orange juuice. however I like pulp when it’s involved in the paper production process
Christian: you’re weird
Carter: this is probably the most high pitched “waaah!”s I’ve heard in any twenty five minute period
Christian: they don’t call it doo-waaaahp for nothin’
Carter: I’m talking wahs not wops christian get it strai8
Christian: you’s just a teenage mess
Carter: ……rude??????
Christian: i really like how this sort of mirrors the feeling of the opening, but from a later/alternate perspective
Carter: yeah! this entire album has felt like a way fuzzier girls album and I can very dig that
Christian: i do not listen to girls and probably don’t like them. but i like sum pup. WAIT HIDDEN TRACK. SURPRISE!
Carter: that was a very quick gap before the Bonus Traxk
Christian: yo we’re dealing with tapes here, we don’t have infinity minutes
Carter: oh is this a t8pe
Christian: yes
Carter: I thought I was listening to a computer
Christian: nope tape
Carter: virtual internet tape
Christian: ok NOW it’s done no more tracks after this one
Carter: I enjoyed logging into this
Christian: what if i was joking, and there is more. there isn’t. 2 short
Carter: this is a triple album. two more albuu

CARTER’S VERDICT (FOR THE WHOLE ALBUM) – doo-wop crossed with lo-fi garage rock/surf rock probably wouldn’t sound super appealing to me if someone told me about it without playing me a sample of this some pulp album which I’m reviewing right here right now. I sort of recall Mister Heavenly shooting for a sound kind of like this, but I think Some Pulp truly succeeds with this style. the album is excellently paced too – if it were ten or so minutes longer, it could have easily dragged. this is a delectable nugget of super-melodic garage rock jams though. I think the reason my brother wanted me to review this is because I tend to say mean things about things he likes but I truly did enjoy this a lot. spin this on your computer or in your car or on that hi-fi stereo you know the one. it’s like a van party but it’s sound and music you can hear. a very rad 7 hats out of 10 hats turned backwards with a bit of hair sticking out the back

So there you have it – the first DEUX REVIEUX, and featuring not only my feelings but my dorky but intelligent little brother’s feelings as well. Thanks for reading! Go buy the album and support the band!