No matter how much I hate Ben Weasel and his moronic (egotistic?) one-sided blog posts, and repeated unleashing of websites only to never update them—I admit that he is a great pop punk songwriter. Some of my favorite songs ever are SW tunes, and as far as I’m concerned My Brain Hurts is quite literally the best album released by the band. This is Asian Man’s re-issue of it (which I own on tape, CD, and vinyl through the Lookout original pressings) was remastered by Mass Giorgini (SW bassist on the last few CDs) and contains new layout work. The mastering job was done well, and I like how you can hear the backing vocals much clearer than on the 1991 versions, but the recording still sucks. Nothing you can do about that—blame it on low-end equipment and a speedy recording session. Oh, don’t get me wrong, the sucky recording is part of the reason that makes this the best SW album of all time. Sometimes gritty, low-budget warmness feels better than recordings that cost more than homes in Chicago go for in 2005. I also noticed that Martin from Los Crudos took all the pictures. Too cool. Joe King’s bio/liner notes commentary and the band members’ song descriptions and flashbacks were also a nice treat.
–mrz (Asian Man)