Alternative Press - 7/02, pp.80-17 out of 10
- "...High Octane...poppy tunes with great bass lines and frontman Trevor Kieth's measured croon to drive 'em home..."
CMJ - 4/8/02, p.10
"...Delivers what all punk fans have been yearning for: the good-old fashioned punk rock..."
Face To Face: Trever Keith (vocals, guitar); Scott Shiflett (vocals, bass); Pete Parada (drums).
Producers: Trever Keith, Scott Shiflett, Chad Blinman.
Recorded at Audio International, Ojai, California.
This California punk combo has been around since the early '90s, doing time on the punk circuit opening for the likes of Offspring and the Mighty Mighty Bosstones. It's a testament to their persistence and energy that HOW TO RUIN EVERYTHING, their ninth full-length, is also their best. It kicks off as it means to go on, with the quick-acting, Clash-sounding "Bill of Goods" and the crowd-pleasing "The Take-Away" followed by the tom-tom propelled, betrayal-themed "A Wolf in Sheep's Clothing."
There's a freshness and easy energy to Face To Face's songs that belies their length of service to punk ideals, and it's to their credit that they communicate this energy again and again over this 15-song set. The title track is the album's only nod to acoustic textures, with vocalist Trevor Keith sounding like a cross between Paul Weller and Billy Bragg, in an obvious acknowledgement of the band's Anglophile roots. In its energy and heartfelt lyrics, HOW TO RUIN EVERYTHING is almost a layman's guide to the best of 21st-century US punk rock.