In Defense of The Genre

Say Anything: Sorry, dudes, their bad.

In Defense of The Genre, emo torchbearers Say Anything's 27-song, two-disc quasi-concept album, is twice as long and nowhere near as good as its predecessor, 2004's Is a Real Boy. This time out, frontman Max Bemis's muses are his struggles with drug abuse and his very public bipolarity. (He was busted in NYC last year for screaming obscenities at passing schoolchildren, spitting in random ladies' soup, etc.) It's part of his deal, his arc, his art. The last song on Defense's first disc, addressed to his bandmates, is titled "Sorry, Dudes. My Bad." This is his therapy; we are his couch. The album, as a consequence, sounds like you'd expect it to sound: hilariously overindulgent, borderline psychotic, wholly unnecessary, occasionally sort of fantastic. Overall, Defense is merely okay, except for the later stages of the second disc, around when they sample someone — just assuming it's Bemis here — vomiting. Those are just fucking terrible.

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