Well, it’s been a long dang time since I listened to Bracket. Honestly I didn’t know that they were still around. A few weeks ago, outta the blue, I get an email inquiring if I’d review their latest material. Given the horrible job I did back in 2000 reviewing the Fat Wreck Chords release “When All Else Fails” I figure I owe them at least this much.
Bracket, if you aren’t old enough to remember, is a pop-punkish band from the North Bay town of Forestville. Their tracks generally had the sounds familiar to the pop punk genre, but with a bit more of an emo factor, if you will. Rare Cuts Vol. 1 is no different in this regard. That stands well to reason, given that the tracks on the recent effort are all rarities and/or previously unreleased material. Also of note is that this release is the first in a series to be released exclusively through Bandcamp in order to fund two future Bracket projects. So, by all means check out their Bandcamp page and support some DIY rock! http://bracket.bandcamp.com/
For better or worse, Rare Cuts Vol. 1 offers 10 tracks of vintage and/or rare Bracket tracks. You get things like string mixes, live acoustic versions, 4-track demos, alternate mixes and covers. For the discriminating Bracket fan, what more could you want?
If you’re not already a past or present fan, I recommend you start with my introduction to the band, the aforementioned “When All Else Fails” to get you started. After that you can transition into some of these more challenging tracks. Beyond that there’s some good stuff on here. The John Wilkes Isolation Booth (Demo) with its juxtaposed blues breakdown is particularly intriguing.
If you’re curious, hit the Bandcamp link about and help support one of your old, or possibly new, favorite bands. Seriously, what have you got to lose? For your $10 bucks, no matter what, you get the warm all over feeling of having helped a band put out records DIY and what’s more, a Bracket cover of “Do You Remember Rock ‘n’ Roll Radio?”! Enjoy.