BARENAKED LADIES: STOP US IF YOU'VE HEARD THIS ONE BEFORE! (2012)
1) I Don't Get It Anymore; 2) Yes! Yes!! Yes!!!; 3) Half A Heart; 4) Old Apartment; 5) Shake Your Rump; 6) Same Thing; 7) One Week; 8) Teenage Wasteland; 9) Long While; 10) Second Best; 11) I Can, I Will, I Do; 12) Adrift.
Considering how productive Page and Robertson had shown themselves to be over the centuries, one would think it reasonable to suggest they might have a shitload more of stuff in the vaults — enough to fill out a boxset or two, and delight the fans, especially those that admire the band's «serious» side as sincerely as their «quirky» side. Moreover, some dedicated and knowledgeable fans occasionally confirm that suspicion — which makes it all the more surprising why the heck is the band's only archival CD, containing a modest 46-minutes worth amount of music, focused almost exclusively on alternate versions of already well-known tracks, always inferior ones and sometimes differing only in regard to the mix.
The official explanation is that the record was originally planned as a «companion» to a proper best-of package (Hits From Yesterday & The Days Before), but something went awry, the two projects could not be properly synchronized, and eventually the rarities package got delayed and was released as a separate entity one year later. Regardless, it's a fairly pointless entity. The only track that is worth some interest is the previously available single B-side ʽYes! Yes!! Yes!!!ʼ, a fun, catchy power-popster co-written by Hearn and containing one of the fuzziest riffs in Barenaked Ladies history (although, might I add that the cheesy synthesizer line that comes in to double the riff adds a suspicious whiff of a teen-oriented summer-themed video game). Maybe it is also possible to throw together some excitement for the unfinished electric demo of ʽLong Whileʼ, but there is nothing special about it.
Technically, there is also some live stuff here that could be useful for fans — early performances of ʽSame Thingʼ and some pointless bore that is arrogantly titled ʽTeenage Wastelandʼ, preceded by silly jokes on the art of performing in the German language and eventually transforming itself into a subsconscious, but flaccid, tribute to Otis Redding's cover of ʽSatisfactionʼ. Yes, there is also a live run through a Beastie Boys song (ʽShake Your Rumpʼ), but I see no point in the Barenaked Ladies covering the Beastie Boys other than informing their audience that they do, in fact, love the Beastie Boys, which we already know because of ʽOne Nightʼ etc.
Everything else is just demos and alternate mixes of songs that weren't that good to begin with (ʽI Can, I Will, I Doʼ), or, on the contrary, songs that were already perfect (ʽOne Nightʼ) and needed no further undisclosed variations. In short, this whole package is more for the historiographer of the Barenaked Ladies than even the loyal fan; maybe someday Robertson might learn how to get it right, but until then, you might want to trust my thumbs down on this.Check "Stop Us If You've Heard This One Before!" (CD) on Amazon
Check "Stop Us If You've Heard This One Before!" (MP3) on Amazon