All About Chemistry [Import Version]

( 5 )

Editorial Reviews

Barnes & Noble - David Sprague
When last heard from on the 1998 hit "Closing Time" from Feeling Strangely Fine, Semisonic frontman Dan Wilson was wearing his heart on his sleeve -- which had been dragged through a barroom's worth of spilled beer. Well, Wilson may have changed his threads on this long-awaited follow-up, but that heart is still right out there in the open, spilling its contents for anyone within earshot. All that openness might be annoying if he and his bandmates didn't couch those emotions in melodies that lodge themselves so firmly in the brain, as evidenced by the poignant undercurrents of songs like the gently pulsing "Act Naturally" not the Johnny Russell song famously covered by...
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Editorial Reviews

Barnes & Noble - David Sprague
When last heard from on the 1998 hit "Closing Time" from Feeling Strangely Fine, Semisonic frontman Dan Wilson was wearing his heart on his sleeve -- which had been dragged through a barroom's worth of spilled beer. Well, Wilson may have changed his threads on this long-awaited follow-up, but that heart is still right out there in the open, spilling its contents for anyone within earshot. All that openness might be annoying if he and his bandmates didn't couch those emotions in melodies that lodge themselves so firmly in the brain, as evidenced by the poignant undercurrents of songs like the gently pulsing "Act Naturally" not the Johnny Russell song famously covered by the Beatles and the chiming "She's Got My Number." Yes, the trio spend a bit too much time exploring the darker side of their musical palette -- the onanist anthem "Get a Grip" is really the only time they let loose and allow silly grins spread over their faces. But that quiet earnestness is, for the most part, a welcome change from the blinding flash of the current pop crop, hearkening back to past masters like Todd Rundgren and Carole King, the latter puting in a guest appearance on the soaring "One True Love." All About Chemistry may be more about sincerity and craftiness than electrifying urgency, but its cozy glow will keep the hearth warm for a long time to come.
All Music Guide - Leslie Mathew
Since the mid-'90s, Semisonic has been inspiring the overuse of words like "literate," "smart," and "well-written" by reviewers everywhere. All About Chemistry doesn't do anything to change that: It is a suite of 12...well, smart and immaculately crafted songs, all seemingly destined for the charts, yet also possessing enough lyrical muscle to elevate them above the level of guilty pleasure. Chemistry injects a heavy dose of piano into Semisonic's former copybook college rock sound, moving the group a few steps closer to the adult pop bracket. "Sunshine and Chocolate" is full of a sensual shimmer, borne along on a tune that is peppy in the best possible way. "Act Naturally" blends sweetness, prettiness, and heartbreak in perfect proportions. "I Wish" dissolves its thwarted desires in a slow-burning, "Layla"-esque coda. And "One True Love," written with Carole King who also sings backup and plays piano on the track, is both slightly desolate and wholly lovely -- a dream of a perfect love-to-be that also perhaps contains hints of regret for the seemingly inevitable moment when a dream is all it will turn out to be. Frontman and lyricist Dan Wilson creates interestingly human characters, people frayed by love and tossed about by contradictory impulses, not knowing what they want and wanting it all the same. Drummer Jacob Slichter proves he's no pushover in the writing department with "El Matador," a wispy and impressionistic tune that gently references Joni Mitchell while waving goodbye to the summer: "Lying on the couch defenseless/With blue clouds court and spark." Only one song feels like a dud -- "Get a Grip," a charmless but ingratiating paean to self-love that feels...er, tossed off. That apart, Chemistry is almost perfectly balanced -- sweet but not sugared, clever but not wiseass, crafted but not cold. [MCA issued a twelve track import edition in 2001 as well.]
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 3/13/2001
  • Label: Universal Mod Afw
  • UPC: 008811235529
  • Catalog Number: 112355
  • Sales rank: 224,481

Tracks

Disc 1
  1. 1 Chemistry (4:08)
  2. 2 Bed (4:04)
  3. 3 Act Naturally (3:41)
  4. 4 She's Got My Number (5:01)
  5. 5 Follow (3:44)
  6. 6 Sunshine and Chocolate (3:35)
  7. 7 Who's Stopping You? (3:06)
  8. 8 I Wish (7:56)
  9. 9 One True Love (3:50)
  10. 10 Get a Grip (3:33)
  11. 11 Suprise (3:47)
  12. 12 El Matador (5:08)
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Album Credits

Performance Credits
Semisonic Primary Artist
Technical Credits
Semisonic Producer
Brad Kern Engineer
Joel Bajrech Illustrations
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 5
( 5 )
Rating Distribution

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Sort by: Showing all of 5 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Definitely NOT a disappointment!!!

    They've truly done it again...the songs are catchy and the lyrics represent situations that have happened in my life or the lives of people that I know in regards to love... I love this band, they really know how to talk about these sensitive issues (and in a cool, unique, and catchy way).

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    The Way Music Should Sound

    Semisonic has managed to impress me once again. Their ''All About Chemistry'' album was even more exciting than ''Feeling Strangely Fine.'' Although it didn't recieve the recognition that it well deserved, it is certainly worth the money. It is one of my favorites from 2001. I recommend ''Follow'' and ''She's Got My Number.'' I just wish that public would realize the beauty of this album.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    One of the most underrated bands ever!!

    Man, Semisonic just keeps churning out great songs and great albums, but the public keeps missing out. Chemistry has great hooks, harmonies, lyrics, it's the total package. Just like all of Semisonic's work. But Chemistry is a notch above because it's more developed. The songs are so well written they'll be in your head after one listen. This a great album if you like music you'll love it just like I do!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    satisfied me again...

    wow...one of the greatest album...I like feeling strangely fine and I like this album. just listen , and you'll feeling another style against recent rock. their own style will remain them one of the greatest album

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    they did it again semisonic blasts off with rocket power

    finally it has arrived i have been waiting for months and yes it was well worth the wait !since the release the group has a new member christopher joyner let me tell you he is one to keep an eye on very talented and is a perfect match for semisonic check him out

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
Sort by: Showing all of 5 Customer Reviews