New Jersey Stage
New Jersey Stage on social media


Governor Phil Murphy announces NJ as first state to provide universal access to arts education
Click here for the story

#27 The Commons: Dirt Waffle

By Gary Wien

originally published: 01/26/2012

Dirt Waffle represented a major change of direction for The Commons.  This release moved away from the collective moodiness  and introspection of Come On Get Gone towards a mixed bag of rock, pop, and even jazzy numbers.  The result is somewhat akin to the music released by the Canadian band Barenaked Ladies during the ‘80s.  It was something entirely unexpected from The Commons, but they pulled it off well.  In fact, the album seems to get better with age.

When lead singer Keith Monacchio was informed that this release made the Top 100, he replied that he always believed this was a better album than many people thought.  While many fans of the band would have  been more likely to highlight American Ghost instead,  Dirt Waffle deserves a second look.  Within this album are several of the best songs the band ever recorded.

Ironically what makes it so good is also what makes people forget how good it is.

From the get go, the album runs through a potpourri of mellow tunes, rockers, and off-beat numbers that dare you to categorize them.  While Come On Get Gone and American Ghost both had specific themes running through their albums, Dirt Waffle is undeniably free of any such barriers.  It’s not due to a lack of focus, the band just seemed ready, after the seriousness of their previous release, to have fun again.

There’s the hilarious tale of the band on a roadtrip in “The Van Rolls On”; the new wave inspired paranoia of “It’ll Go Away”; the bouncy fun of “Numbers” and friends who are doing time in prison.  In between lies the utterly beautiful “Simple Things” and wonderfully sentimental “Looking Back.”  The album is like fine wine...

Highlights include “Don’t Go On Me,” “Numbers,” “Back On The Bus,” “Simple Things,” “Three...Two...One,” “The Van Rolls On,” and “Looking Back.”


From the book Are You Listening? The Top 100 Albums of 2001-2010 by New Jersey Artists by Gary Wien


Gary Wien has been covering the arts since 2001 and has had work published with Jersey Arts, Elmore Magazine, Princeton Magazine, Backstreets and other publications. He is a three-time winner of the Asbury Music Award for Top Music Journalist and the author of Beyond the Palace (the first book on the history of rock and roll in Asbury Park) and Are You Listening? The Top 100 Albums of 2001-2010 by New Jersey Artists. In addition, he runs New Jersey Stage and the online radio station Asbury Music. He can be contacted at gary@newjerseystage.com.

 






For more by this author, click here




More Articles You Might Like

The Black Keys Tour To Hit NY and Philly
The Black Keys Tour To Hit NY and Philly
Phil Collins to Perform at MSG
Phil Collins to Perform at MSG
NJPAC Presents Alice’s Restaurant Back By Popular Demand Tour On September 29
NJPAC Presents Alice’s Restaurant Back By Popular Demand Tour On September 29
Newton Theatre Presents The Jayhawks
Newton Theatre Presents The Jayhawks
Celine Dion To Perform At Prudential Center On March 7, 2020
Celine Dion To Perform At Prudential Center On March 7, 2020
Sara Bareilles Announces Shows in NYC & Philly
Sara Bareilles Announces Shows in NYC & Philly






Event calendar
Tuesday, Sep 17, 2019


MUSIC

Sheli Monacchio at Cafe Artiste @ Cafe Artiste, Ocean Grove - 7:00pm

The Waterboys @ Count Basie Center For The Arts, Red Bank - 8:00pm

Tuesday Night Record Club: The Beatles' Abbey Road @ Wilson Auditorium at Monmouth University, West Long Branch - 7:30pm


COMEDY

GREG HAHN @ Howie Mandels Comedy Club at Hard Rock Hotel and Casino Atlantic City, Atlantic City - 8:00pm

View all events

























New Jersey Stage © 2019 by Wine Time Media, LLC | PO Box 140, Spring Lake, NJ 07762 | info@newjerseystage.com

Images used on this site have been sent to us from publicists, artists, and PR firms.
If there is a problem with the rights to any image, please contact us and we will look into the matter.