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Psychopharmacology

Firewater Audio CD
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (10 customer reviews)


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Product Details

  • Audio CD (July 10, 2001)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Jet Set Records
  • ASIN: B00005BC94
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (10 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #291,482 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

1. Woke Up Down
2. Psychopharmacology
3. Fell Off The Face Of The Earth
4. Get Out Of My Head
5. 7th Avenue Static
6. Car Crash Collaborator
7. Bad, Bad World
8. The Man WIth The Blurry Face
9. Black Box Recording
10. She's The Mistake

Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com

Even if one had never heard the band before, a spin of Firewater's third release, Psychopharmacology, would tell even the most naive of minds that the band was furiously focused on the rock-and-roll prize. Much like the Grifters, Firewater creates edgy, somewhat shady rock and roll for the not-so-easily-amused set. The aerobic energy of the title cut, with its hints of madhouse-meets-circus, is a perfect example; do you dare look it directly in the eye, or do you let it reach in and pull out your guts? Equally huge and graceful is "Car Crash Collaboration," a cut that finds frontman Tod A (ex-Cop Shoot Cop) at his most sinewy, like Mick Jagger with a more subtle agenda. --Jason Josephes

Customer Reviews

4.5 out of 5 stars
(10)
4.5 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
Format:Audio CD
Firewater seems to need to struggle to release an album. With their first release, GET OFF THE CROSS WE NEED WOOD FOR THE FIRE, a couple of retailers in Florida refused to carry the album because it featured a version of the "Sacred Heart of Jesus" with two minor alterations-- Christ was depicted holding a high ball in one hand and a cigarette in the other. They probably would have been only slightly more offended if they had listened to the album. It combined a kind of Tom Waits/Kurt Weil sensibility with middle eastern and eastern europeans flavors, with just enough of the Doors to come in handy. A quite good, but ultimately uneven album.
Then came "The Ponzi Scheme", who's release had to be delayed because of its innovative design. Tod A, who is both a frontman and a graphic designer, decided to encase the CD in a metal tin. Unfortunetly, there was a surplus demand in cat food, and the tin manufactorer had to delay. The Ponzi Scheme, with its spy themes and broken dreams headed Firewater more towards a rock direction, with several songs sticking in the listeners head for hours on end (but in a good way).
Now, almost four years later, comes PSYCHOPHARMACOLOGY, delayed ultimately by a protracted battle with a record company and several producers. Perhaps the album is better off for it, however. The three years in time seem like three light year sin distance, and here is a brand new firewater that manages to combine all of the disparate influences rather than bounce almost self-consciously from one to the next. DOn't get me wrong, I love Ponzi and Cross, but PSYCHOPHARMACOLOGY is a truly great and ground breaking rock album in and of its own right, regardless of whether you like the band or not.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Sipping on a Oxygen Cocktail July 27, 2001
Format:Audio CD
“I’m a raging success as a failure,” sings Tod A. Don’t be so modest, Tod. While many bands can only do one or the other, Firewater is not only successful at writing great music, but also at writing brilliant lyrics. The songs on Psychopharmacology are both beautiful and funky, clever and demented. A regular barstool philosopher, Tod pokes fun at everything from technology to death with his one-too-many-cigarettes-smoked voice. While this could be a real downer, Firewater’s songs are laden with enough piano, sax, tambourine, and sitar to be nearly rockabilly. Tod isn’t crying in his beer, he’s dancing on the bar “sipping on an oxygen cocktail.”
Psychopharmacology comes four years since Firewater’s last release, The Ponzi Scheme, which was close on the heels of the first release Get off the Cross (We Need the Wood for the Fire). In the past, Tod A. (who used to front the band Cop Shoots Cop) has had help from Duane Denison of The Jesus Lizard, Yuval Gabay of Soul Coughing, and is joined once again on this new release by Jennifer Charles of Elysian Fields.
Firewater is more irresistible than Harvey Danger and less lollipop than Squirrel Nut Zippers, while still appealing to the wit and sound of those two bands. Rarely is an album so catchy and so tongue-in-cheek that it keeps getting better and better each time you hear it. Psychopharmacology is destined to take up permanent residence in your CD player, so make room. Lyrics like, “And I would train to be an astronaut if I weren’t afraid of heights, and you know I could be a supermodel if you turned out all the lights,” will be swimming around between your ears for days. It may require therapy, even a lobotomy to get Psychopharmacology out of your head.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Third cd from Firewater is the charm July 30, 2001
Format:Audio CD
Firewater has always been a band that is trying to push the envelop as far as sound. Their lyrics are angst-ridden affairs attacking religion and government. A band that matters is something sacred. There aren't many bands like Firewater in the world. They sound like a mixture of the Pogues, Tom Waits and The Doors. On Psychopharmacology the group is in fine form. Catchier than their previous two cd's it's a must buy for anyone searching for something more than the latest rap-core, teeny punk bands, grunge ripoff bands that are labelled rock. The latest cd is a great intro to Firewater. It's as catchy as I'd ever want them to be.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Bleak, funny, brilliant November 13, 2001
Format:Audio CD
The latest effort from Tod A and the rest is they type of music that large record companies wouldn't like you to know about. Amazingly dextrous musicians contribute to deceptively simple melodies to complement Tod's distinctively mordant lyrics dealing with, well, how pointless and cruel life is. What separates him from the other angst-merchants (see: Trent Reznor) is that he doesn't take himself or anything else very seriously; as he said so eloquently in a past album: 'I really don't care anymore.' Tod A mines the same vein as the novelist Hubert Selby-telling the stories of those who are ignored in the inane celebrity culture within which we have the displeasure to find ourselves. Musically, this is certainly more accessible than say, Cop Shoot Cop's 'Consumer Revolt,' but this ain't Matchbox 20. At times it certainly reaches beautifully depressing heights, such as 'seventh ave static,' surely one of the best songs of this or any year. The song displays brilliantly the band's talent for fusing disparate musical threads into a single, seamless piece of anger, depression, resignation, and eloquence. I guess I shouldn't be surprised that Firewater isn't more widely recognized-but then again, I'm sure Tod A is happy he's not helping along that fake 'Consumer Rebellion' he derided about a decade ago. Bravo.
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