Take Off Your Pants and Jacket
|Take Off Your Pants and Jacket|
|Studio album by Blink-182|
|Released||June 12, 2001|
(San Diego, California)
Larrabee Studios West, Cello Studios
|Singles from Take Off Your Pants and Jacket|
Take Off Your Pants and Jacket is the fourth studio album by the American pop punk band Blink-182. Produced by Jerry Finn, the album was released on June 12, 2001, through MCA Records. The band had spent much of the new previous year traveling and supporting the album Enema of the State (1999), which launched the band's mainstream career. The title is a tongue-in-cheek pun on male masturbation ("take off your pants and jack it"). The cover art has icons for each member of the trio: a jacket, a pair of pants and an airplane. Several different editions were released with additional bonus tracks.
The record was primarily recorded over three months at Signature Sound in San Diego. During recording sessions, MCA executives pressured the band to retain the sound that helped their previous album sell millions. As such, Take Off Your Pants and Jacket continues the pop punk sound that the group honed and made famous, albeit with a heavier tone inspired by groups such as Fugazi and Refused. Regarding lyrics, the album has been referred to as a concept album chronicling adolescence, with songs dedicated to first dates, fighting authority and teenage parties. Due to differing opinions on direction, the trio worked in opposition to one another for the first time, and sessions sometimes became contentious.
The album had near immediate success, becoming the first punk rock-identified record to debut at number one on the Billboard 200 and shipping double platinum within three weeks. The album produced three hit singles — "The Rock Show", "First Date" and "Stay Together for the Kids" — that were top ten hits on the modern rock charts. Critics were generally positive towards the record, commending the record's expansion on teenage themes; others viewed this as its weakness. To support the record, the band co-headlined the Pop Disaster Tour with Green Day. A European tour was canceled in the wake of the September 11 attacks. Take Off Your Pants and Jacket has sold over 14 million copies worldwide.
- 1 Background
- 2 Recording and production
- 3 Packaging
- 4 Composition and lyrics
- 5 Singles and promotion
- 6 Release and reception
- 7 Touring
- 8 Track listing
- 9 Personnel
- 10 Charts
- 11 Release history
- 12 See also
- 13 References
- 14 Notes
- 15 External links
After a long series of performances at clubs and festivals and several indie recordings during the 1990s, Blink-182 finally achieved mainstream success with the release of Enema of the State in 1999, which launched the band "into the stratosphere of pop music" and catapulted them to become the biggest pop punk act of the era. The glossy production instantly set Blink-182 apart from the other crossover punk acts of the era, such as Green Day. Three singles were released from the record — "What's My Age Again?", "All the Small Things", and "Adam's Song" — that crossed over into Top 40 radio format and experienced major commercial success. "All the Small Things" became a number one hit on the Modern Rock Tracks chart, but also became a crossover hit and peaked at number 6 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart. Its video parodied boy bands and pop music videos and won a Moon Man for Best Group Video at the 2000 MTV Video Music Awards. The album sold over 15 million copies worldwide and had a considerable effect on pop punk music.
The band spent most of 2000 touring in support of Enema of the State, where they headlined arenas for the first time. The band played to sold-out audiences and performed worldwide during the summer of 2000 on the Mark, Tom and Travis Show tour. The tour was staged as a drive-in movie, with a giant retro billboard suspended from the ceiling, and films were projected on the screen behind the band—including vintage gay porn as a joke. The tour was one of the most anticipated rock tours of the season and the band headed out on the road with Bad Religion and Fenix TX. Barker broke one of his fingers during an altercation with two men who kept flirting with his girlfriend in Ohio, and Damon DeLaPaz, guitarist of Fenix TX, stepped in on drums for Barker. The band also performed at the Reading and Leeds Festivals in August 2000. To celebrate the success of the tour, the band released a limited edition live album titled The Mark, Tom and Travis Show (The Enema Strikes Back!), which featured snippets of the band's infamous between-song dialogue.
The period following Enema of the State saw the band experience great transition. "We had gone from playing small clubs and sleeping on peoples' floors to headlining amphitheaters and staying in five-star hotels," recalled Hoppus in 2013. "After years of hard work, promotion, and nonstop touring, people knew who we were, and listened to what we were saying … it scared the shit out of us."
Recording and production
The band recorded demos at DML Studios, a small practice studio in Escondido, California, where the band had written Dude Ranch and Enema of the State. The group had amassed a dozen songs after three weeks and invited their manager, Rick DeVoe, to be the first person outside Blink-182 to hear the new material, which the band found "catchy [but with] a definitive edge". DeVoe sat in the control room and quietly listened to the recordings, and pressed the band at the end on why there was no "Blink-182 good-time summer anthem [thing]". DeLonge and Hoppus were furious, remarking, "You want a fucking single? I'll write you the cheesiest, catchiest, throwaway fucking summertime single you've ever heard!" Hoppus went home and wrote lead single "The Rock Show" in ten minutes, and DeLonge similarly wrote "First Date", which became the biggest singles from the record and future live staples.
The band began proper tracking for drums soon after at Larrabee Studios West and Cello Studios in Hollywood. The working relationship with Jerry Finn had been so fruitful that the same team was largely engaged for Take Off Your Pants and Jacket, with Finn producing and Joe McGrath engineering. Finn and McGrath, meticulous in desiring the best sound, took two days to experiment with microphone placement, different compressors, and varying EQ's before committing Barker's drums to tape. The waiting "drove [him] crazy," and Barker tracked his drum parts in "two or three days" while DeLonge and Hoppus watched television upstairs. When drums were completed, the band returned to San Diego to record the bulk of Take Off Your Pants and Jacket at Signature Sound, where they had also recorded its predecessor. While the band worked hard with few days off, the sessions also proved to be memorable: "We took long dinner breaks, ate Sombrero burritos, watched Family Guy and Mr. Show, and laughed way too hard." When MCA Records executives eventually traveled to San Diego to hear the highly anticipated follow-up, the trio played a joke by only playing them two joke songs — "Fuck a Dog" and "When You Fucked Hitler" (the subject of which later changed to a grandfather) — and the executives "lost it," in DeLonge's words. MCA put pressure on the band to maintain the sound that made Enema of the State sell millions; as a result, DeLonge believed the album took no "creative leaps [or] bounds." As such, DeLonge felt creatively stifled and "bummed out" with the label's limitations.
The creative struggle was evident from the outset. Hoppus loved everything regarding Enema of the State — including the music videos and live show — and "wanted to do it again," desiring to create a bigger, better and louder follow-up. DeLonge instead was striving for heavier and dirtier guitar-driven rock, which was inspired by post-hardcore bands Fugazi and Refused. Barker, "never simply a punk rock drummer," wanted to challenge himself and was listening to a great deal of hip hop and heavy metal. The lyrics often turned darker and more introspective for Hoppus, and "love songs became broken love songs." DeLonge pushed his guitar style further away from that on Enema of the State—"arpeggiated guitar hooks became frenetic 1/16th note spasms," wrote Hoppus in 2013. Barker's drum parts were looped and filtered, creating different sounds. For the first time, the trio worked in opposition to one another, and sessions could sometimes become contentious. Hoppus felt that the sessions created an unspoken competition between he and DeLonge, between who could write the better chorus or most clever lyrics. "Our confidence and insecurity begat some heated differences, sometime to the point where we had to leave rooms and cool down," recalled Hoppus. Finn would often smooth over differences with a joke, offering a fresh perspective and advice.
The title is a tongue-in-cheek pun on male masturbation ("take off your pants and jack it"). Previous titles had includued If You See Kay (a pun on "fuck") and Genital Ben, accompanied by a bear on the cover of the album (a reference to Gentle Ben). Stressing for a name, DeLonge asked guitar tech Larry Palm for suggestions. The album's title was created by Palm, who was snowboarding at Big Bear on a rainy day. Inside the Bear Bottom Lodge, Palm was congregating with friends when a young kid walked in completely drenched, to which his Mom suggested he "take off [your] pants and jacket." Palm was told by DeLonge that if the band were to use the name, he would "hook him up". Instead, Palm received a letter from manager Rick DeVoe for his contribution, which offered a $500 payout for the name. Palm scoffed at the amount, and filed suit in 2003 with the intellectual property attorney Ralph Loeb, alleging breach of contract and fraud against the band. Palm demanded $20,000; the band eventually settled out of court for $10,000.
The cover has three "Zoso-like" icons for each band member: a jacket, a pair of pants and an airplane. "Please don't give me the plane — I have a really fucked-up fear of flying," Barker begged, but he ended up with the plane anyway. Journalist Joe Shooman called the title a "highlight a glint of sharp intelligence behind the boys' humour as it draws oblique attention to the fact that, latterly, Blink-182 had often been encouraged to get naked in order to promote themselves. It's a very self-aware album title in that context and a portent, perhaps, of what was to come."
Composition and lyrics
Take Off Your Pants and Jacket has been called a concept album chronicling adolescence and associated feelings. The band did not consider them explicitly teenage songs: "The things that happen to you in high school are the same things that happen your entire life," said Hoppus. "You can fall in love at sixty; you can get rejected at eighty." The record kicks off with "Anthem Part Two", which touches on disenchantment and blames adults for teenage problems. It serves as the opposite of the band's typical "party" image presented to the media, with heavily politically-charged lyrics. Joe Shooman called it a "generational manifesto that exhorts kids to be wary of the system that surrounds them." "Online Songs" was written by Hoppus about "the thoughts that drive you crazy" in the aftermath of a breakup, and is essentially a follow-up to "Josie". "First Date" was inspired by DeLonge and wife Jennifer Jenkins' first date at Sea World in San Diego. "I was about 21 at the time and it was an excuse for me to take her somewhere because I wanted to hang out with her," said DeLonge. The track was written as a summary of neurotic teen angst and awkwardness. "Happy Holidays, You Bastard" is a joke track intended to "piss parents off." The fifth track, "Story of a Lonely Guy", concerns heartache and rejection prior to the prom. The song is downbeat and meloncholy, filtered through "tuneful guitar lines reminiscent of The Cure and hefty drum patterns."
The following track, "The Rock Show", is the opposite: an incredibly upbeat, "effervescent celebration of love, life and music." It was written as a "fast punk-rock love song" in the vein of the Ramones and Screeching Weasel. The song details two teenagers meeting a rock concert, and, despite failing grades and disapproving parents, the two remain in love. It was inspired by the band's early days in San Diego's all-ages venue SOMA. "Stay Together for the Kids" follows and is written from the point of view of a helpless child of divorce. Inspired by DeLonge's parents' divorce, it finds the band delving into darker material. "Roller Coaster" was written when Hoppus had a nightmare when he and his wife, Skye, first began dating; the song regards finding something ideal but fearing for its certain departure. "Reckless Abandon" was penned by DeLonge as an reflection on summer memories, including parties, skateboarding and trips to the beach. "Everytime I Look for You" has no specific lyrical basis, according to Hoppus, and "Give Me One Good Reason" was written about punk music and nonconformity in a high school setting. "Shut Up", a "broken-family snapshot," revisits the verdant territory of youthful woes, described by Shooman as a "fairly familiar rites-of-passage tale" that "adds to general themes of isolation, alienation and moving on to a new place that pervade Take Off Your Pants and Jacket." "Please Take Me Home" concludes the standard album and was written about the consequences when a friendship develops into a relationship.
Several bonus tracks follow on separate editions: some continue the teenage theme, while others are joke tracks. Barker borrowed Afro-Cuban influences for his drum track on "Don't Tell Me That It's Over", and DeLonge stepped outside his punk influences for "What Went Wrong". While DeLonge felt "staple acoustic songs" were big for groups at the time (Green Day's "Good Riddance"), the band wrote all of their songs from their inception on acoustic guitars, and he felt he would rather have "What Went Wrong" in its original form. "You grow up and realize, 'Fuck! Who gives a fuck about punk rock?'" he said. "There are so many great forms of music out there, and you grow beyond wanting to listen to or write something because your parents will hate it." Finn suggested lyrics for the song after viewing a documentary on the first Russian nuclear test; in the film, an aged Soviet physicist says of watching the explosion, "There was a loud boom, and then the bomb began fiercely kicking at the world.”
Singles and promotion
To promote Take Off Your Pants and Jacket, MCA Records released three singles in support: "The Rock Show", "First Date" and "Stay Together for the Kids", all of which were top ten hits on Billboard's Modern Rock Tracks chart. The lead single was "The Rock Show", for which the band recorded a music video that included them trashing televisions, trains, taking the homeless for a spa makeover, handing out cash to random strangers and paying dancers to mow people's lawns. The relatively large budget for the video, reputedly $500,000, was the basis of the joke and needlessly spent. Although it only peaked at number 71 on the Hot 100 and number 33 on the Pop Songs chart, it reached number two on Billboard's Modern Rock Tracks chart.
The music video for "First Date", the album's sophomore single, pays homage to the Bee Gees and is based in the mid-1970s, featuring the trio playing long-haired, hippie versions of themselves. Clad in long wigs, bell-bottoms and butterfly collars, the trio drive around a quiet suburb in a Volkswagen van, making stops at a diner and water park. The video, directed by The Malloys, was filmed over three days in Burnaby, British Columbia, and performance footage was filmed in a garage decorated with 1970s paraphernalia. Singer Jordan Pundik and guitarist Chad Gilbert of New Found Glory, with whom the band were touring with at the time, make cameo appearances in the clip. The track rose to number six on the Modern Rock Tracks chart.
The third and final single released from the record was the more serious "Stay Together for the Kids". The filming for its music video, directed by Samuel Bayer, took place on September 9 and September 10, 2001, around the theme of a wrecking ball smashing through a house in which the band were performing. After the September 11 attacks, the band felt shots of a crumbling home (a metaphor for divorce) were simply too close to home and re-recorded the video with the same crew. The new version depicts the band playing in a broken-down mansion populated by screaming kids, and is intended to convey the feeling of being in a broken home. The single peaked at number seven on the Billboard Modern Rock Tracks chart in the issue dated November 24, 2001. "Stay Together for the Kids" was released as a single and EP with live tracks and video extras.
In addition, the band performed on the Late Show with David Letterman and Late Night with Conan O'Brien in support of the record. The band also appeared in MADtv sketch, in which the trio stars as misfits in an all-American 1950s family (a parody Leave It to Beaver). The trio also sanctioned a band biography, Tales from Beneath Your Mom (2001), which was written by the trio and Anne Hoppus (sister of Mark Hoppus).
Release and reception
Take Off Your Pants and Jacket was release in June 2001, a date The Village Voice referred to as "timed nicely with the end of the school year." The album debuted at number one on the US Billboard 200 chart, with first-week sales of 350,000 copies. Billboard regarded the success as a response to the success of the first single, "The Rock Show". The album was the first punk rock-identified album to debut at number one in the United States. The record shipped platinum, and was certified double platinum within three weeks. Shortly after the release of Take Off Your Pants and Jacket, the Federal Trade Commission's report rapped MCA and Blink-182 with marketing explicit material to children.
Take Off Your Pants and Jacket has sold over 14 million copies worldwide.
The record was initially released in three separate configurations: the "red plane", the "yellow pants" and the "green jacket" editions. Each release contained two separate bonus tracks, ranging from joke tracks to unreleased cuts. The only outward sign that the discs were distinct were three stickers. The multiple bonus-track versions were only available for a limited time before the album reverted to a regular, standard edition without any bonus tracks. A European-only vinyl release occurred in 2001. In 2010, Hot Topic distributed a tri-color reissue of the record on vinyl, which was repressed in 2012 on black, 180-gram vinyl.
In 2011, the Brooklyn-based independent record label Mightier Than Sword licensed Take Off Your Pants and Jacket to reissue on 180-gram vinyl, with three additional 7-inches featuring the six bonus tracks. After taking preorders, the company "ran out of money." Hoppus spoke on the subject in an interview with Altnerative Press: "It’s honestly something that is out of our control and not something that we are happy about happening at all." Shop Radio Cast took over the project and the LP was eventually released in May 2013. To date, this is the only vinyl release that includes the album's bonus tracks.
|Entertainment Weekly||C+ |
|The Village Voice||(favorable)|
|Rock Hard (de)||7.5/10|
Critical reception of Take Off Your Pants and Jacket in 2001 was largely positive. Rob Sheffield of Rolling Stone was generally the most effusive of the positive reviews, praising the unpretentious attitude of the band: "As they plow in their relatively un-self-conscious way through the emotional hurdles of lust, terror, pain and rage, they reveal more about themselves and their audience than they even intend to, turning adolescent malaise into a friendly joke rather than a spiritual crisis." Darren Ratner of Allmusic felt similarly, writing that the record is "one of their finest works to date, with almost every track sporting a commanding articulation and new-school punk sounds. They've definitely put a big-time notch in the win column." People commended the "adrenaline-laced sonic gems reveling in blink's patented, potty-mouthed humor, recommended only for adolescents of all ages." British publication Q offered the sentiment that "when they stop arsing around for the sake of it, Blink-182 write some very good pop songs." Kerrang! gave it a high-profile review, calling the record "eminently hummable dummy-spitting tantrum rock for the emo generation."
The Village Voice called the sound "emo-core […] intercut with elegiac little pauses that align Blink 182 with a branch of punk rock you could trace back through The Replacements and Ramones Leave Home, to the more ethereal of early Who songs." Aaron Scott of Slant Magazine, however, found the sound to be recycled from the band's previous efforts, writing, "Blink shines when they deviate from their formula, but it is awfully rare […] The album seems to be more concerned with maintaining the band's large teenage fanbase than with expanding their overall audience." Entertainment Weekly felt similarly, with David Browne opining that "the album is angrier and more teeth gnashing than you'd expect. The band work so hard at it, and the music is such processed sounding mainstream rock played fast, that the album becomes a paradox: adolescent energy and rebellion made joyless." British magazine New Musical Express, who heavily criticized the band in their previous efforts, felt no more negative this time, calling them "teenage dirtbags" that should "fuck right off." Continued: "It sounds like all that sanitised, castrated, shrink-wrapped 'new wave' crap that the major US record companies pumped out circa 1981 in their belated attempt to jump on the 'punk' bandwagon."
More recent reviews have subsequently been positive. Website AbsolutePunk, in part of their "Retro Reviews" project, called Take Off Your Pants And Jacket the band's best effort in 2011. Reviewer Thomas Nassiff referred to it as "a transitory record for Blink-182, but you can’t tell just by listening to it on its own. It’s developed and it’s full – it feels holistically complete, dick jokes and all." In 2005, the album was ranked number 452 in Rock Hard magazine's book of The 500 Greatest Rock & Metal Albums of All Time.
The Take Off Your Pants and Jacket supporting tour occurred in April 2001 in Australia and New Zealand. The band returned to US soil to promote their new record on the Late Show with David Letterman in June 2001. Afterwards, the band set out on the 2001 Honda Civic Tour, for which the trio designed a Honda Civic to promote the company. The band again received criticism for "selling out," but the band argued by way of mitigation that their tickets were consistently lower priced that groups of their stature, and by accepting corporate links they could continue to give fans a good deal. The band used a day off to guest a gig on a Warped Tour date in Somerset, Wisconsin in July 2001. In December 2001, the trio played at a series of radio-sponsored holiday concerts, and also appeared as presenters at the 2001 Billboard Music Awards in Las Vegas.
The band rescheduled European tour dates in the aftermath of the September 11 attacks. "After the attacks the world kind of went into freeze mode and we didn't know whether to carry on with things or not […] so we decided we'd rather everyone was safe and play the shows a little later instead," said Hoppus shortly thereafter. The European dates were called off a second time after DeLonge suffered a herniated disc in his back. With time off from touring, DeLonge felt an "itch to do something where he didn't feel locked in to what Blink was," and channeled his chronic back pain and resulting frustration into Box Car Racer (2002), a post-hardcore disc that further explores his Fugazi and Refused inspiration. Refraining from paying for a studio drummer, he invited Barker to record drums on the project and Hoppus felt betrayed. The event caused great division within the trio for some time and an unresolved tension at the forefront of the band's later hiatus.
In 2002, the band co-headlined the Pop Disaster Tour with Green Day, alongside opening acts Jimmy Eat World, Saves the Day and Kut U Up. The tour was conceived by Blink-182 to echo the famous Monsters of Rock tours; the idea was to have, effectively, a Monsters of Punk tour. The tour, from the band's point of view, had been put together as a show of unity in the face of consistent accusations of rivalry between the two bands, especially in Europe. Instead, Green Day's Tré Cool acknowledged in a Kerrang! interview that they committed to the tour as an opportunity to regain their status at the top of tree, as their spotlight had faded over the years. "We set out to reclaim our throne as the most incredible live punk band from you know who," said Cool. Cool contended that "we heard they were going to quit the tour because they were getting smoked so badly […] We didn't want them to quit the tour. They're good for filling up the seats up front." Several reviewers were unimpressed with Blink-182's headlining set following Green Day. "Sometimes playing last at a rock show is more a curse than a privilege […] Pity the headliner, for instance, that gets blown off the stage by the band before it. Blink-182 endured that indignity Saturday at the Shoreline Amphitheatre," a reporter for the San Francisco Chronicle wrote in 2002.
The band released a second DVD of home videos, live performances and music videos titled The Urethra Chronicles II: Harder Faster Faster Harder in 2002. Likewise, the 2003 film Riding in Vans with Boys follows the Pop Disaster Tour throughout the U.S.
|1.||"Anthem Part Two" (DeLonge)||3:48|
|2.||"Online Songs" (Hoppus)||2:25|
|3.||"First Date" (DeLonge)||2:51|
|4.||"Happy Holidays, You Bastard" (Hoppus)||0:42|
|5.||"Story of a Lonely Guy" (DeLonge)||3:39|
|6.||"The Rock Show" (Hoppus)||2:51|
|7.||"Stay Together for the Kids" (Hoppus/DeLonge)||3:59|
|8.||"Roller Coaster" (Hoppus)||2:47|
|9.||"Reckless Abandon" (DeLonge)||3:06|
|10.||"Everytime I Look for You" (Hoppus)||3:05|
|11.||"Give Me One Good Reason" (DeLonge)||3:18|
|12.||"Shut Up" (Hoppus)||3:20|
|13.||"Please Take Me Home" (DeLonge)||3:05|
|Red Take Off version|
|14.||"Time to Break Up" (DeLonge)||3:04|
|15.||"Mother's Day" (Hoppus)||1:37|
|Yellow Pants version|
|14.||"What Went Wrong" (DeLonge)||3:13|
|15.||"Fuck a Dog" (Hoppus/DeLonge)||1:25|
|Green Jacket version|
|14.||"Don't Tell Me It's Over" (DeLonge)||2:34|
|15.||"When You Fucked Grandpa" (Hoppus)||1:39|
|Tour edition bonus DVD|
|1.||"The Urethra Chronicles II: Harder Faster Faster Harder"||48:00|
- On the clean version of the album the track "Happy Holidays, You Bastard" is listed as just "Happy Holidays", and is an instrumental with the exception of the last line "I'll never talk to you again".
- On the limited edition bonus track versions, "Please Take Me Home" has roughly three minutes, or 182 seconds of silence at the end.
Break the Cycle by Staind
|Billboard 200 number-one album
June 30, 2001 – July 6, 2001
Devil's Night by D12
|United States||June 12, 2001||MCA||CD||088 112 627-2||Standard edition|
|088 112 627-2, 088 112 629-2||Red version|
|088 112 627-2, 088 112 628-2||Yellow version|
|088 112 627-2, 088 112 661-2||Green version|
|United Kingdom||112 671-2||Standard|
|LP||112 674-1||Original first pressing|
|United States||November 2010||Geffen||B0014819-01||Tri-color reissue, gatefold packaging|
|February 25, 2012||B0014819-01||180-gram reissue, gatefold packaging|
|May 7, 2013||SRC025/SRC026/SRC027/SRC028||180-gram reissue, gatefold packaging, three 7-inch singles for bonus tracks|
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