Review by Jack Arkell
Featuring songs not just from Bowling For Soup, but from regular support acts The Dollyrots and Patent Pending, some of these being covers of each others’ material, it is fair to say that ‘One Big Happy’ is a real mish-mash of a collection.
And with only one new Bowling For Soup track on the album in ‘Let’s Go To the Pub’, it would be easy to feel short changed if you approach this as a BFS release. Instead, taken as the October UK tour companion that it is, ‘One Big Happy’ is an entertaining ride while it lasts.
The new BFS track opens proceedings, and it is pretty much what you’d expect from the Texans at this point; a humorous slice of pop-rock that slots in seamlessly with their earlier work. A couple of covers follow, The Dollyrots’ rendition of ‘The Bitch Song’ the pick of the pair, although their own ‘Just Like All the Rest’ easily eclipses this a couple of songs later.
Patent Pending come out with a fair amount of credit themselves, their track ‘Psycho in Love’ providing one of the highpoints of the collection. ‘Little Miss Impossible’ lodges itself in the memory too, The Dollyrots performing the Patent Pending written track to great effect.
Bowling For Soup later cover a track from each band, selecting their favourite song from their back catalogues, though this is no substitute for new material. By the time Jaret Reddick duets with Dollyrots’ Kelly Ogden for final track ‘Love ya, Love ya, Love ya’, an infectious number at that, there isn’t quite the immediate urge to play the record back again.
However, the collection does advertise the October UK tour well, a run of dates across the country that all three bands will be a part of. If you were attending the tour anyway, this will make a decent companion. If not, it may well persuade you to purchase a ticket. As a stand-alone album though, while the standard is high throughout, ‘One Big Happy’ is little more than an introduction to two lesser known bands. And for that, it may be better to buy their own releases instead.
7 out of 10
- Let’s Go to the Pub (BFS new song)
- The Bitch Song (The Dollyrots cover of BFS)
- Shut Up and Smile (Patent Pending cover of BFS)
- Just Like All the Rest (The Dollyrots)
- My Heart Explodes (BFS cover of The Dollyrots)
- Hyper Active (Patent Pending cover of The Dollyrots)
- Psycho in Love (Patent Pending)
- Spin Me Around (BFS cover of Patent Pending)
- Little Miss Impossible (The Dollyrots cover of Patent Pending)
- Love ya, Love ya, Love ya (Jaret Reddick and Kelly Ogden)