May 072008
Authors: Nick Scheidies

Intro: Mindless Self Indulgence – or MSI, for those who prefer not to juggle all six syllables – combines industrial music with punk rock, hip-hop and dance to create a genre that was once classified as “Christian/Gospel” on iTunes. Oh yeah, and their lead singer’s name is Little Jimmy Urine.

“If” is their highly anticipated follow-up to their breakthrough album, “You’ll Rebel to Anything.”

Pros: Happily, “If” marries that album’s commercially friendly, though still edgy, approach with their more innovative (read: absolutely spastic) early work for a sound that should please MSI fans old and new alike. As always, the lyrics are deliciously depraved (“Excuse me, do you want to screw?”) or just plain silly (“I’m too cool for the second grade”).

Cons: Jimmy Urine’s lyrical and vocal antics may be his most riveting and bizarre yet, but they’re also his least earnest. Unfortunately, the rest of the band delivers ho-hum performances that rarely match Jimmy’s vitality. Furthermore, “If” consists of 15 high-intensity tracks that are all borderline-challenging listens – it’s a lot to handle in one sitting.

Definitive Track: With a whistled melody backed by handclaps and powerchords, “Money” starts off very simple and very catchy.

But Jimmy Urine is up to his usual shenanigans, which include, but certainly are not limited to, driving synth, sudden jumps in tempo, and the distant sound of barking dogs echoing from one speaker to the next.

Conclusion: If you think you can handle high speed, high pitched, highly vulgar vocals (one song chronicles Jimmy’s erectile dysfunction) coupled with strange electronic noises and radical changes in beats per minute and time signature, then “If” will prove very rewarding. Calling MSI “eccentric” is pitiful understatement; Jimmy Urine says it better: “This shit’s gonna turn your momma white.”

Staff writer Nick Scheidies can be reached at

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