Five Iron Frenzy - Quantity is Job One
A funny ska band with a serious message - you must be joking?
When I first heard about Fervr I thought it sounded great, then I realised I’d actually have to write something, so with great thought I sat down and thought, what a better place to start than my favourite band!? The issue with that is that my favourite band actually split-up in 2002 so I had to figure out what CDs are still around in Australia, so I’ll stop the suspense and just get on with it.
Quantity is Job One – Five Iron Frenzy
Five Iron Frenzy are my favourite band, and I will happily promote their music to anyone who wants to know what music I think is good. Five Iron Frenzy were a Christian Ska band from Denver, Colorado in the USA from 1997-2002. Ska is a style that originated in Jamaica (like Reggae). For those who know enough about music, it typically features a highly accented offbeat which is driven by the guitar with a horn section (usually trumpet, trombone & a saxophone) behind. For those who aren’t so musically inclined just think Punk with horns.
‘Quantity is Job One’ is actually an EP, essentially a short album. There’s a good mix in this album, as Five Iron Frenzy were always happy to mix the not-so-serious & serious songs together.
Here’s a track by track overview:
My Evil Plan to Save the World
This isn’t as overtly Christian as you’d expect with this title. It’s actually a bit more silly than that. The first two verses are more focused on this amazing plan to save the world. We do get some contemplation of the impossible task of humans saving the world in the last verse, even throwing out the non-Christian’s view that it can’t possibly the fault of humanity and the natural response is to blame God. Throwing that near the statement that it’s impossible for humanity to possibly solve the problems, the listener is challenged think if that’s really the way to go. Subtle… maybe a bit too subtle?
All That is Good
This one is substantially deeper than the first track. An analysis of the thought going around the Church. This one really does make us think about where we stand, particularly for me being involved in youth ministry, focusing on the concept of shutting our beliefs and not letting questions be asked about faith so that we can actually grow in it but also that fact that reasoning isn’t going to lead us to salvation. This song contains one of my favourite lines for ministry “do they see you when they see me?”
A song about God’s mercy and our need to just give ourselves over to Him. The name comes the often mistaken weed, beginning with an image of a child getting some dandelions for his mother. The singer is amazed by God’s great mercy and seeks to know where he belongs in God’s plan. A great praise song different to the normal worship style, very uplifting.
One Girl Army
The ever controversial topic of women in the churches. This song isn’t being too controversial about it though, very un-rock. The focus is the vital part that women have to play in our churches and how they’re important whatever the role. After all, Mary was a woman & Christ’s resurrection was first revealed to the women.
Sweet Talkin’ Woman
Yep, it’s ELO, not something you’d expect to see on a Christian band’s album, but they’ve done Mama Mia so why not ELO? One for the parents, although everyone can enjoy this one, good cover.
When I go Out
Just a bit of a muck around song, I’m positive everyone will get a laugh out of it.
Get Your Riot Gear
Some social commentary here, about an event in Denver, when the local team won the super bowl, a sense about how the police had gone too far in their actions to defend the town from what was termed a riot. Some pretty vivid images here very catchy tune too.
The Untimely Death of Brad
This one is a silly one. Trumpet player Brad (Dunham) missed a concert and as such rumours went up on the bands message board that he was dead (of course Brad wasn’t), as such, some time later the band wrote this song and decided to poke fun at it. A great line for the students “it’s on the internet, so then it must be true”.
These Are Not My Pants
The album has well and truly gone into silliness now. A “rock opera” about a pair of pants, actually a series of songs in different styles about a pair of pants.
There’s a secret track at the end of it all, a few more runs of When I go Out and a song called Kingdom of the Dinosaurs, basically the band wasting the time they had left on the album, this track contains an apology for how silly the track is.