This album came out two decades ago. Here’s what I had to say about it back then (with some minor editing):
“Anger is so 1996 … angst is just so 1998,” according to London, Ont.’s Sinclaire. So what’s the sound of 2001? Why, emo, of course. And this earnestly punky foursome is nothing if not in tune with their times.
This debut full-length hits all the expected emo marks — chiming, insistent guitar lines, yelping heart-on-my-sleeve vocals, tightly wound double-time rhythms. But on these 11 tracks, the boys also go beyond emo’s claustrophobic confines into straightup indie-rock (the Foo Fighters-like Stealing Second), catchy popcore (the lickety-split Girlfriend Sweater) and even power-chord arena rock (the melancholy crunch of Mr. Right Now). Remarkably for such a young outfit, they’re able to pull them all off equally well — and not just as players but, more importantly, as songwriters — investing Attention Teenage Girls with a maturity and finesse beyond their years. If they can keep that up, they won’t have to worry about going out of style.