Rolling Stone - p.1023 stars out of 5
- "With CHUCK, Sum 41 have pulled off a truly impressive knucklehead stunt: They've managed to grow up a little and still have something to say."
Entertainment Weekly - pp.112-13
"[T]hey fully embrace the riffage on CHUCK, front-loading their tunes with pyrotechnics … la Metallica." - Grade: B+
Sum 41: Biz (vocals, guitar, piano, Mellotron, keyboards); Dave Brownsound (guitar); Cone McCaslin (bass guitar); Stevo (drums).
Personnel: Dave Brownsound (sound effects).
Audio Mixers: Andy Wallace; Tom Lord-Alge.
Recording information: Ocean Studios, Burbank, CA; Reaction Studios, Toronto, Ontario, Canada; Sidecar Studio, North Hollywood, CA; Sound City Studios, Van Nuys, CA; Soundtrack New York, New York, NY; Umbrella Sound Studios, Toronto, Ontario, Canada.
Editor: Jorge Vivo.
Sum 41's super-heavy 2002 album, DOES THIS LOOK INFECTED?, was an exercise in speedy hardcore matched with thundering metal bombast, suggesting that the group might soon morph into a full-fledged thrash band. While CHUCK does refine that style even further than its predecessor, the 2004 album also signals a growing musical curiosity. "Intro," the disc's aptly titled opening song, features tersely picked guitar lines that recall some of the darker moments of Pink Floyd's THE WALL, while "Slipping Away" and "Pieces" are pure melodic power pop. "The Bitter End," on the other hand, sounds like a conscious tribute to or rewrite of Metallica's "Battery" (the first track on the 1986 thrash masterpiece MASTER OF PUPPETS).
Throughout CHUCK, the group's energetic performances and finely honed chops pull together these disparate styles to create a bracing re-examination of what it means to be a pop-punk band. (Note: The album title is a thank-you to Chuck Pelletier, the UN representative who helped Sum 41 make a safe exit from the Republic of Congo when violence broke out while the group was there taking part in a documentary.)