Fans of the former independent rock band Triple Fast Action got a special treat last month from the now defunct band. The band’s 1997 album Cattleman Don’t got the re-issue treatment late last month thanks to independent record label Forge Again Records. The label re-issued the record on a limited-edition double vinyl set. The set features the band’s complete album along with nine previously unreleased songs on the second disc. That expansive amount of extra content will make this re-issue a presentation that, as long as supplies are still available, will appeal to band’s most devoted fans. At the same time, it also serves as a good introduction to the band for new audiences. Considering how much previously unreleased content is featured in this re-issue, there is plenty from which to choose to show what makes that content so important. One of the most notable of the bonus songs comes in the form of ‘Summer Song.’ It will be discussed shortly. ‘Who Cares (What I’ve Been Thinking)’ also stands out among the album’s most notable bonus entries. It will be discussed a little later. ‘Downed’ is also of note among the additional content. It will be discussed later, too. All three songs are important in their own way to the whole of Cattlemen Don’t in its re-issue. When they are considered with the rest of the record’s extra content, that collective material makes the re-issue overall a presentation that any 90s rock fan will enjoy.
Triple Fast Action’s re-issue of its 1997 album Cattlemen Don’t is a record that any 90s rock fan will find appealing. That is proven through its primary and bonus content, but especially through its bonus content. The content in general resurrects a sound many thought lost with the passing of the 90s into the new millennium, so it will prove a welcome return to another age for many listeners. One of the most notable of the songs that makes this record such an interesting presentation is one of its bonus tracks, ‘Summer Song.’ The musical arrangement featured in ‘Summer Song’ is interesting in that its subtle, gentle approach can be likened to some of the more pop style shoegazer sounds of the mid to late 90s. The indie vibe is prominent along with that shoegazer sensibility, too. It is the kind of song that one might expect to hear from a college rock radio station during the 90s, in a good way. That emo/shoegazer style musical approach works strongly with the song’s lyrical content, which also exudes that emo vibe.
The lyrical content featured in this song hints lightly at perhaps being another song about maybe someone feeling alone and almost emotionally desperate. It opens with the song’s subject stating in the song’s lead verse, “Come winter/Come fall/Come one/Come all/And come summer/You better love me/You better run.” He continues in the song’s second verse, “Come leap year/Come right here/Come creeps and weirds/’Cause come summer/You better love me/You better run.” What would seem to be the song’s chorus adds to the impact of this subtle song. It finds the subject stating, “Don’t misinform the seasons/You ought to freshen up the reasons/’Cause come summer/You’re gonna love me.” This is all just this critic’s own interpretation, but it all joins together to make for a somewhat troubling statement of someone who is in a different mental state, a la Sting’s ‘Every Breath You Take,’ which itself was about a man stalking a woman. Yes, that is really what that song was about. The similarity between the two songs is undeniable. Hopefully this critic’s interpretation is wrong, but it certainly comes across very much in that same style. To that end, that very possibility, in examining this song overall, clearly shows what makes it stand out among the album’s overall offerings. It is just one of the songs that makes Triple Fast Action’s re-issue of Cattlemen Don’t such an interesting offering from the band. ‘Who Cares (What I’ve Been Thinking)’ is another notable addition to the album.
The musical arrangement that is featured in ‘Who Cares (What I’ve Been Thinking)’ is another great, catchy 90s style composition. The fuzz rock approach taken here instantly lends itself to comparison to works from Weezer a la “The Blue Album.” The way in which the guitars and even vocals are fuzzed, pairs with the slightly echoing drums and the solid low-end from the bass makes this arrangement so infectious. The seemingly angsty lyrical content that accompanies the otherwise catchy musical arrangement makes for its own share of interest here.
The lyrical content featured in this song seems to present a statement about someone who is just fed up with people in general. This is inferred right from the song’s outset, which states, “Don’t want to know about the winners/And all that they have/Just want to hear about the grinners/And learn to smile right back/And if it wasn’t for the ceiling/The sun wouldn’t shine/And now and then I hear them giggle/I feel them wiggle/Who cares what I’ve been thinking/Who cares what you’ve been thinking/Don’t want to hear about the losers/And their complaints.” That seeming disillusionment is inferred even more in the song’s second verse, which states, “Don’t want to think about the future/And if it wasn’t for the people/I’d be fine/And still I like to watch them slither/See them wither.” Again, this certainly seems to be a statement of someone who is just done with people. It is interesting to have such a seemingly sharp statement aligned with such an infectious musical arrangement. Such contrast makes the song stand out clearly among its bonus content in its own way, making it yet another example of why the bonus content featured in this re-issue key to its presentation. It is not the last of the most notable of the record’s bonus songs, either. ‘Downed’ is another way in which the bonus content in this re-issue stands out.
‘Downed’ offers listeners a musical arrangement that continues the record’s trend of presenting variances from one song to the next that runs throughout this re-issue. In the case of this song, its arrangement presents a sort of indie-folk-rock approach. It stands on its own merits, separate from the album’s other arrangements. It isn’t that fuzz rock sound of ‘Who Cares (What I’ve Been Thinking),’ the shoegazer style work featured in ‘Summer Song’ or any of the other songs’ featured arrangements. That in itself will ensure even more, listeners’ engagement and entertainment. It is just one aspect of this song that will catch listeners’ attention. The song’s accompanying lyrical content plays its own part in the song’s presentation.
Where the lyrical themes in the other songs examined here seem somewhat cynical in their presentations, the lyrical content here comes across more in an upbeat fashion. This seems like someone who is much happier, maybe about having found someone special. It is as if the song’s subject is telling that someone that he is going to be everything possible for the woman. That is inferred right from the song’s lead verse, which states, “If I was your convertible/I’d keep my top down/And I’d let you drive me around/And if I was your stereo, yeah/You couldn’t turn me down/A million watts of your favorite alternative sound.” He continues just as happily in the song’s second verse, “If I was your thermometer/I’d keep the mercury down/98.6 degrees, yeah.” The chorus sections follow in very similar fashion, giving listeners even more of a positive mood. Ironically, that noted musical arrangement is controlled in its approach versus the seeming overt joy in the lyrical content. The contrast once again makes for plenty of engagement and entertainment. That interest shows once more why the bonus content featured in this record’s presentation is so important to the album’s new presentation. Together with the other songs noted here and the rest of the album’s bonus content, the whole collectively makes this album a presentation that so many audiences will find a welcome musical trip back in time.
Triple Fast Action’s re-issue of its 1997 album Cattlemen Don’t is a presentation that will find appeal among the independent band’s original fan base as well as 90s rock fans in general. That is proven through its primary presentation and especially so through its bonus content. The bonus content, which makes up the equivalent of a whole extra album in terms of quantity, rounds out the album and gives listeners even more to enjoy this time around more than twenty years after the album’s original release. The songs examined here support the noted statements. When they are considered along with the rest of the album’s bonus content and its main album, the whole makes the re-issue in whole a presentation t hat any 90s rock fan will enjoy just as much as Triple Fast Action’s established fan base. Triple Fast Action’s re-issue of Cattlemen Don’t is available now. More information on the re-issue is available along with all of the band’s latest news at https://www.facebook.com/triplefastactionband.
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