It is safe to say that I may have an unhealthy obsession with the work of Blake Schwarzenbach. The scratchy vocals, pensive lyrics and overall quality of his work with Jawbreaker and Jets To Brazil has led my life to feel a little like this comic: http://www.mitchclem.com/nothingnice/41. If you are going to check out any of his work, I fully endorse the following four albums.
Bivouac by Jawbreaker
Take it as you will, Bivouac is hailed by Spin Magazine as one the “top 10 emo albums of all time.” While the source and label are questionable at best, I have to agree with the sentiment. Jawbreaker’s second full-length release finds Blake Schwarzenbach, Adam Pfahler and Chris Bauermeister creating an undeniable sound that can be best represented by the anthem “Chesterfield King.”
24 Hour Revenge Therapy by Jawbreaker
While the average review of Jawbreaker’s seminal 1994 release will spend half its space attempting to classify the band, that label is completely irrelevant. Bitter, scathing, angry and yet, somehow poetic; this is quite possibly Schwarzenbach’s best work. Regardless of your feeling on the quality and number of bands that this album has influenced, its pure existence is a reason to celebrate.
Dear You by Jawbreaker
Yes, Dear You was released on a major label. Yes, it is also a much more polished, radio-friendly album. While these two points alone lost the band a number of fans in the solitary year between the release of 24 Hour Revenge Therapy and Dear You, the album’s mournful, brooding turns produced some of the band’s best work with songs like “Accident Prone” and “Jet Black.”
Orange Rhyming Dictionary by Jets To Brazil
Shortly after the break-up of Jawbreaker, Schwarzenbach re-emerged with former members of Texas Is the Reason and Handsome to form the darker, arguably more mature outlet Jets To Brazil. 1998’s Orange Rhyming Dictionary is haunting, emotional and beautiful at times. Schwarzenbach’s lyrical style is undeniably his own and nothing about that changed in the move from Jawbreaker to Jets To Brazil.

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