Nerf Herder - How To Meet Girls
Honest Don's



Nerf Herder's 1996 debut album was one of those rare things I just picked
up at the used record store, bought without previewing, and ended up
liking. The album starts off with catchy pop-punk rhythms, and clever
lyrics keep you singing along. During the second half of the album,
though, the band lost a little steam. So, it was obviously with a little
trepidation that I listened to Nerf Herder's new album, "How To Meet
Girls."

Although it's been four years since Nerf Herder's last album, you'd never guess from listening to their new album -- it sounds pretty much the same as their debut, only with a little moog thrown in. Girls opens up with Vivian, a song finding Nerf Herder pretty close to top form -- catchy riffs, nasal vocals, and lyrics catchy enough to sing along to on the first try.
Girls continues on, mixing pop-culture with, uh, girls, to find a pretty good lyrical mix to dwell on. Courtney is all about the band's idolatry of Courtney Love (and contains the soon to be classic line: "Hope I'm not out of place -- Courtney Love, sit on my face!"). Lamer Than Lame is a pretty standard pop-punk song about, uh, not getting the girl, but this time the catch is that the lyrics admit that the girl is better than the writer.
Lamer Than Lame starts the album's power section -- continued through the catchy Feeling Bad and the hilarious Pantera Fans In Love, a tale of two youngsters whose love for metal seems to conflict with every aspect of their life.
After Pantera Fans, Girls loses a little steam, but nowhere near as much as on Nerf Herder's debut. On the debut, I feel compelled to skip through pretty much everything after Van Halen or Diana (tracks 5 and 6, if you didn't know), whereas on this album, the middle tracks are listenable even though they're not the most enjoyable things on here.
Jonathan, a sort-of ode to Jonathan Richman, picks things back up, before finally petering out over the last few tracks on the album. Nerf Herder make tons of references to pop culture throughout the album, and it's interesting that on For You (basically a list of things they would do for "you"), they mention that they'd get slayed by Buffy every week.
How to Meet Girls is much more punk-pop than pop-punk, if that makes any sense. That is to say that while Nerf Herder's debut brought out the poppier side of punk rock, Girls seems to revel in the punker side of pop music. See if you can make any sense out of that. If you like your punk melodic, with lyrics you can sing along to (and that don't have much of a message), pick up How to Meet Girls.
...john heisel...

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