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Ween

Ween The Mollusk

Ween Album Reviews

It’s tempting to write Ween off as a novelty band – their biggest hit single, ‘Push th’ Little Daisies’, is gimmicky and stoned. But lurking beneath all the silliness is an ace duo who are students of popular music, with the imagination and songwriting skills to affectionately pay homage to or parody everything from Jimmy Buffett to Prince. Vocalist Gene Ween is a vocal chameleon, which helps them cover huge stylistic ground, from easy listening croons and Philly soul to cock rock stomps and progressive rock.

Ween were formed by Aaron Freeman (Gene Ween) and Mickey Melchiondo (Dean Ween), who met in 8th grade in New Hope Pennsylvania. They began making records on four track cassette recorder with a drum machine. I haven’t covered their first three albums – I always found The Pod and Pure Guava tough to sit through, although their debut certainly has some very strong material. Lots of hardcore Ween fans prefer this early period, characterising it as “brown”.

Starting with 1994’s Chocolate and Cheese, Ween started playing with a full band, and making more polished records, and that’s where I get on the bus. The group split in 2012, with Gene leaving, but reunited in 2015 for live performances, and are currently considering a sequel to outtakes collection Shinola.

Ten Favourite Ween Songs

The Argus
Mutilated Lips
I Don’t Want It
Piss Up A Rope
Even If You Don’t
The Blarney Stone
Freedom of ’76
Bananas and Blow
Monique The Freak
Flutes of Chi

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Ween Chocolate and Cheese

Chocolate and Cheese – Ween

1994, 7.5/10. The first Ween album with professional recording standards, careening through a myriad of styles.

Ween 12 Golden Country Greats

12 Golden Country Greats – Ween

1996, 6.5/10. 12 Golden Country Greats stands up as a surprisingly satisfying foray into country for Ween.

Ween The Mollusk

The Mollusk – Ween

1997, 9.5/10. The flavours of nautical themes and progressive rock permeate through The Mollusk.

Ween White Pepper

White Pepper – Ween

2000, 8.5/10. After several guise albums, Ween returned to eclecticism for White Pepper.

Ween Quebec

Quebec – Ween

2003, 8/10. Ween describe Quebec as a “brown” album, which means that it’s often reminiscent of the druggy lo-fi early Ween.

Ween Shinola Vol. 1

Shinola, Vol. 1 – Ween

2005, 6/10. Shinola Vol. 1 is a scatter-shot collection of leftovers from various Ween projects

Ween La Cucaracha

La Cucaracha – Ween

I’m not quite familiar enough with this to write about it yet, although at this point I’m inclined to think … Continue Reading La Cucaracha – Ween

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