Born to Quit, released in 1995, was the Smoking Popes second album and first for major label Capital Records. Hailing from
the band started in 1990 originally under the name Speedstick by the Carter brothers Josh, Matt, and Eli. In 1991 they changed their name to Smoking Popes and began writing, recording, and playing shows. Ben Weasel, of Screeching Weasel fame, became a fan of the band and helped them hook up with Mass Giorgini, of Squirtgun, to record their full-length debut Get Fired. That record caught the attention of Green Day who asked the band to open for them in 1994. After that the band opened for ELO and was signed to Capital who then re-released Born to Quit. Chicago, IL
The album itself is a mixture of pop punk and power pop with Sinatra-meets-Morrissey lounge-esque vocals. It’s the uniqueness of the vocals that makes this record really work. The songs are all catchy and infectious (especially the two singles “Need You Around” and “Rubella” the videos of which both got a good amount of airplay on 120 Minutes and my personal favorite “Just Broke Up”) and cover the standard pop punk / power pop topics of love and girls. The album really is a ‘90s classic and is scheduled to be reissued by Asian Man Records “sometime in 2011.”
So why is this a New to Me post and not a Blast from the Past post? Two reasons really. First I just got this CD a few days ago for the first time (I found it in a $0.99 bin at a Vintage Stock). Second, a lot of my Blast from the Past posts also include some kind of personal anecdote and since I have none for this record I figured that it didn’t fit.