"Someday I Suppose," Mighty Mighty Bosstones
Raise your hand if third wave ska played an important formative role in your life. (I’m looking at you, Travis Barker!) This is more or less the point at which I started developing my own tastes and standards, not just musically but pretty much across the aesthetic board. Before ska, it’s all just other people’s music. Sure, I had opinions about the stuff my parents would play in the car (never did get into Gloria Estefan…sorry, Mom!), and there were songs I’d hope to hear when I got control of the dial, but it wasn’t until a friend turned me on to ska that I felt like I was hearing something that really resonated with me, something that was truly mine.
Hang-Ups, Losing Streak, Why Do They Rock So Hard?, Life Won’t Wait, Let’s Face It…feel free to substitute your own, but albums like these were my lifeblood by the time I got to high school. Ska had it all, man. It was snotty, it was catchy, it was goofy, it offered a way to sneak in the backdoor to punk without getting beaten up by those mohawk and leather types hurling themselves around VFW and KOC halls. Oh, and it had horns. What a sucker I was for the horns. Yes, for a few glorious years, we were, all of us, suckers for the horns.
The Bosstones knew this. It’s why their videos focus on the brass the way some bands highlight guitar solos. Huge though their biggest single may have been, the video for “The Impression That I Get” is minimalism at its worst: It mirrors the artwork from Let’s Face It, but that just makes it a performance video set in some tedious purgatory of infinite white. In that sense, it’s kind of like a version of “Someday I Suppose” with all the liveliest bits removed. Before the suits got to them…rather, before they got to the suits, the Bosstones were total fashion victims. Or perhaps they would prefer “ensembly challenged”? Suspenders, windbreakers, a Stormtroopers of Death baseball hat, and so much goddamned plaid it’s even smearing its way onto the instruments. Don’t get me wrong, I love the whole classy, two-tone, “band in suits” schtick, but there’s something awkwardly endearing about the gangly pranksters on display in “Someday.” They’re cute, in a sort of sweet and nonthreatening way, like Tai in the seconds before she tumbles down those stairs. —Kylie