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Local Review: Life Has A Way – Unified

Local Music Reviews

Life Has A Way

Street: 03.10
Life Has A Way = Social Distortion + The Flatliners + Lagwagon

Upon listening to the latest release of these SLC punk rock heavyweights, I get the sense that Life Has A Way are one of those bands that are not looking for trouble, but just trying to have fun. What else should I expect from an album whose song titles include “Beer Flavored Nipples” and “Sick Bitch Pickin’”? Well, an even blend of punk rock n’ roll rather adequately suits my expectations.

The first thing that I notice is Jamie Jameson’s vocals have got a unique drawl to them—almost like the vocal chords of Joey Cape and Mike Ness were hardwired together and sung out of Fat Mike’s throat. The emulation is actually quite astonishing. But … “Get to the point, Eric! Is the music any good?” And the answer is “Yes.” I’ve listened to it 10 times over, and Unified is a lot of fun the whole way through.

You’ve got “Comes Back on You” with its souped-up Aerosmith-style guitar riffs, a song that feels like it never runs out of gas. “Beer Flavored Nipples” dabbles in the ska-punk realm with downright hilarious lyrics of some of our most primal urges—“Think they’re small / I don’t care / Mammaries are everywhere!” “Lesser of 2 Evils” delves on the issue we see a lot in modern politics, which is having to pick a candidate we hate the least. Then we get more somber songs both musically and lyrically, like “Unamerican,” which depicts the struggle of the modern working-class band. And “Wake Up with Whiskey,” in a power ballad approach, creates a very depressing image on how alcohol is often used as a suppressant.

Life Has A Way are fun, and Unified has a very even approach with its songs, which are supposed to be either funny or serious, fast or slow, heavy or soft. It’s a great mix that makes you laugh but also question the ways of life. –Eric U. Norris