Customer Reviews: Is This It
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on February 21, 2005
I have this feeling that the people who are so mercilessly bashing these guys are more outraged by all the hype that surrounds this young band.Having picked up on The Strokes "post-hype", I was able to listen with an un-biased ear and take the music for what it really was.Sure, there isn't anything ground-breaking here-but the music is fresh, its fun, energetic, and very enjoyable. "The Strokes" aren't musical gods, but they write sweet tunes, and the instrumentation is tight. They don't sound like every other band out there, and their popularity is easily credible to the fact that their music is genuinely fun without sacrificing the band's artistic integrity.

Is This It is a VERY fun and upbeat album. There isn't a single downer-if you don't get the urge to nod your head somewhere in the middle of the album, something is seriously wrong with you. So, chill out, ignore the hype, turn the music up, and sing along to this fresh, fun, and zesty band.
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on December 17, 2001
I admit that I jumped on the Stroke-wagon a little late but I'm glad I climbed aboard. I really appreciate albums without filler. "Is This It" is just that, strong all that way through. The walking basslines of the title track mesh perfectly with Julian's vocals. The beginning of "Last Night" will remind you immediatley of "American Girl" by Tom Petty but comes into it's own after the first few bars. Throwing down a few more ducats gets you the original album artwork which was banned in the US (the whole situation is very reminiscent of Spinal Tap's "Smell the Glove", STRANGE), and the song "NYC Cops", which was left off the US release after the WTC 9/11. This song is the most "punk" on the CD. Aside from the multitude of 70s band comparisons (Television), if you like good, bar band rock this IS it.
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on June 12, 2005
What if I could offer you instant happiness? This happiness could be obtained without having to take any pills, invest large sums of money, vote Socialist in the next election or meet any new and interesting friends in the county lock-up. My guess is that most of you would be interested in my offer. Now, that you're interested, all you have to do is find your way to the nearest mall or dot com so you can obtain the 2001 release, "Is This It", by the band The Strokes. It is not merely a collection of tunes; it is an ecstatic dose of acoustic Wellbutrin.

I'm still trying to figure out what happened with this record even though I bought it over three years ago. One minute I was slogging along with my anti-pop culture friends and deriding this age of musical nihilism and the next I'm in my living room singing "He won't decide but he won't debate."

I purchased the CD after hearing the addictive radio single, "Last Night." I usually don't buy a lot of new releases, as I'm often severely disappointed. It is rare when I find the popular stuff worthwhile. Yet, the first time I heard the record I knew it was special before the sixth or seventh song even began to play. Their sound is effervescent and stimulates regardless of the volume at which they are heard. Many may dismiss their compositions as being merely "catchy" but I think this is incorrect. There is a quiet complexity to their sound and, as my friend Grange put it, "They're so smooth it's actually deceptive- because there's actually a whole lot going on."

I will acknowledge that their physical appearance is not confidence inspiring. They appear on television in ultra-trendy dress and their liner note photos make them look as if they each individually drank three barrels apiece from the fountain of youth. Yet inexperience and glamour do not contaminate the end product which vibrates from your speakers.

The truest proof I can offer of their excellence is that "Is This It" did not leave my CD player for three months time after purchase. I'd give it a quick play on a daily basis. Only now have I reached the point where the record infrequently breaks into the rotation but I still appreciate it whenever it does.

The Strokes have become my default option whenever the need to buy a gift arises. For my mother's birthday last year, I decided to amazon her the album (along with a bunch of other stuff). My mom loved it and when I visited for Christmas I found the record on her passenger seat, which suggested heavy use.

One of my friends was going through a nasty bout of melancholia so I decided to give it to him as a present. He reported to me that the vitality of the melodies actually made him feel better.

Is this a hybrid, commercially fabricated band? Who cares. They're great and that's all I care about. Sometimes a band of mercenaries can be melded into a unit and the end result is a Stanley Cup champion or a Super Bowl victory. Regardless of influence or history, The Strokes sound grand and that's enough for me. If you're in the need for cheap euphoria, get ready because this is it.
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on November 21, 2001
"Blah blah blah, I'm too indie for you, this album sucks, it's too hyped, it's been done, etc." Sound like anything you've read recently?
The funny thing about hype--I think--is that it works both ways. People complain that an album sucks because it's "too hyped", but, aren't they really just buying into the hype? I had never even heard of The Strokes until I downloaded some of their stuff off of I was totally blown away. I am a die-hard fan of vintage rock and roll, and rarely listen to anything made past the 1980's, and I love this album. Yes, they have influences--every band does--but they have added something to the old "insert 1 part angst, two parts catchy guitar riffs, 1 part good hair" formula that people have been copying for years. One thing is apparent about this album that I value: The Strokes aren't trying to hard to be obscure and different--they're just playing good old rock and roll for music's sake, and what, may I ask, is wrong with that?
But, whatever, I'm not going to lend a hand to you clueless fools who choose to buy into the pretentious anti-hype. You can listen to the indie-posers and I will keep The Strokes all to myself. Thank you!
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on October 1, 2002
I went ahead and bought this limited edition 2-pack. Since I don't have MTV2, and therefore never get to see these videos, I figured it was a good deal. And I'm glad I got it! The videos look even better on DVD, and the two performances from MTV's $2 Bill show are nice to have. So buy this special edition release and pass your original CD on to someone who doesn't have it yet!
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on March 28, 2015
I hate to have to bring down the review of my favorite album from my favorite [post 90's] band. I love this album so much that I decided to get it on vinyl. But when I received it, it was warped and it skipped a lot. So I went through the minor hassle to get it replaced by amazon, and received another one for free. But the new record was also warped and skipped. There was another review that said the same thing. So don't get the vinyl.
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on October 20, 2001
"Is this it" brought pre-release hype to new heights so now that the record is out the obvious question is: Does it live up to the hype? Well, of course not. People were expecting the second-coming of the Rolling Stones or the Velvet Underground (post Cale) and the Strokes ain't either. But on the other hand this is a brilliant album and it's most likely to end in my TOP 10 this year. In a time when most (indie) music is ethereal, intimate, slow-paced and, let's be honest, BORING, this comes as a fresh breath of air! The Strokes' most obvious influence is New York Punk from the late '70s (they're always compared to bands such as Television, the Stooges, Velvet Underground and a bunch of others). I particularly love The singer's raw vocals, delivered, as Amazon states, with "weary nonchalance". All in all, this is a must-have!
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on December 26, 2014
This item doesn't work. I recieved the item at the expected date and tried it on my new record player. It sounded scratchy and it skipped from song to song. It sounded horrible and I immediately took it off because I was scared it would damage my record player (it sounded that bad.) I returned the product and requested for a replacement. I again recieved the second copy in a very timely manner but it sounded just like the first one. I am now requesting just a plain refund. The service I recieved was very satifying I just wish the product worked.
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on December 30, 2001
I basicly don't like music publications nor do I watch any MTV, so by chance I heard "Last night" on a local radio station. This is a stripped bare rock record and that's a good thing no matter who everyone and their mother thinks they have ripped off their sound from. In the unfortunate "hyped up consumeristic" era we are in it is impossible for them to escape the microscope of every Johnny come lately musical expert. I have been into the punk scene for about 16 years and I understand that for some unknown reason it is just not "cool" for a band to be popular, upper middle class, talked about and liked by people other than "true unbending scene slobs". Good news folks, your kind eventually matures. You can still be so called "cool" and like any on the planet!
Yes this has been done before and no they are not saving any scene or musical genre, what they are doing is playing music that can be liked by a wide variety of people and I don't see the problem with that. It's o.k. to like something even though the masses have discoverd it.
The Strokes have written some great catchy tunes on Is This It, in my opinion the entire record is solid with no signs of filler material. I hear tinges of The Smiths songwriting structures with more punch and edge. Also I detect some New Order/Joy Division influences here. At times the bass lines are reminiscent of the driving, howling sound of a New Order tune, and the vocals have a tinge of the haunting Joy Division. I won't make all the other comparisons that are listed infintly by most of the reviews and numerous publications, those have been overstated.

If you like good, catchy, edgy, raw, stripped down rock and roll this is worth your time and money.
Oh yeah, does anyone else out there detect a tinge of the Sid and Marty Croft Superstars? Maybe that's why I like this disk, it reminds me of watching H.R. Puffinstuff, Sigmund the Sea Monster and The Buggalos on Saturday mornings when I was a kid.......
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on November 25, 2003
Now look into my eyes and believe me : "Is This It" is one of the 100 greatest albums of all time , and one really close from being at the top of the list , right between Marquee Moon and White Light/White Heat !
Rarely in my life have I seen such a brilliant record , with absolutly no flaw and a truly unique sound . Yes my dear fellows , I said , like , "a truly unique sound" . "Is This It" is commonly known as the godfather of Rock'n Roll revival , but there is absolutly no way you could compare it to the likes of The Vines or The White Stripes . The Strokes sounds like the 70's , yet nothing in the 70's sounds like The Strokes . Casablancas sings like Lou Reed on The Modern Age ? SO WHAT ?
WAKE UP GUYS ! When critics compare The Strokes to The Velvet Underground or Television , what they truly mean is just that The Strokes belongs to the same kind of small and arty underground bands !
And that is exactly why I HATED The Strokes at first glance . When I heard everyone talking about a "revolution" , I thought The Strokes were the Nirvana of the 00's and thus was really disapointed by those weird and childish songs . It took me two years and a couple of other listenings to understand what "Is This It" was really all about , to understand it wasn't a record that took itself seriously at all and that it was never meant to fill stadiums. The Strokes is exactly the kind of bands you'd enjoy in small , private nightclubs where you can smoke and drink as you wish to fully enjoy the music .
This isn't The Beatles , Led Zeppelin or Nirvana . This is merely one of the greatest albums of all time , and that's good enough for me .
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