A horrible hack

Samiam

Billy

Year Released: 2000
Format: CD
Label: Golf
 
Reviewed by Pete Burn on Jun 13, 2007
Lucky for me that Golf has just re-issued Samiam’s New Red Archives releases, because ‘Billy’ was getting pretty damn hard to find (as well as being their only record which I didn’t own). A long with Samiam’s first two timeless masterpieces, this represents the blueprint for any band attempting a more melodic, honest approach to hardcore. I would go so far as to say that to a large extent, Samiam have created and defined the modern day interpretation of ‘emo’. But these guys were playing uplifting, emotive rock music way before it became cool, therefore making most bands look like chimps for even trying. Listening to ‘Billy’ creates an instant sense of familiarity because you hear riffs which so many people have emulated to an overbearing extreme. I originally had a dislike for Samiam’s sound, finding it slightly annoying, but one day it clicked and I listened to their ‘Soar’ LP on a daily basis. At this stage I would consider myself to be obsessed with Samiam in the same way I became with Jawbreaker. There is something within the lyrics and music that radiates a feeling of pure honesty and emotional expression, which is unique to find in what is now such a wide spread of genres. Some of Jason Beebout’s lyrics on this album are incredible, he manages to express himself in a way which almost anyone could relate to. God damn… songs like “Head Trap” and “Regret” are some of their finest moments. Samiam = Gods.

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