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What's the name of the fastest airplane ever built?

Answer: SR-71

Nobody really cares except some engineers who built the damn thing and some guys who took it as the name for their group.

Gotta hand it to Blink 182. As one of the early and successful practitioners of Punk-pop these gents inspired their contemporaries and the next wave to head down that same raucous three-chord road. It is a good road but there sure is a lot of traffic. Even the Blink boys parked in a rest stop for awhile and let Boxcar Racer roll out.

Forming in the early '90s with guitarist/vocalist Mitch Allan, guitarist Mark Beauchemin, bassist Jeff Reid and drummer Dan Garvin, this Baltimore quartet didn't release its debut album "Now You See Inside" until '00. That's a long time to be nursing your chops. "Tomorrow" came out in '02.

A third studio album "Here We Go Again" hit in '04. After that the group went on an indefinite hiatus.

Trivia time: Mitch Allan was the only band member to appear on all three released albums. And drummer John Allen, who replaced Gavin in '02, went on to found and front Charm City Devils.

SR-71 Discography


2000 Now You See Inside
2002 Tomorrow
2004 Here We Go Again

SR-71's debut "Now You See Inside" Rocks but it doesn't soar. Not a big problem in this era of lowered expectations. The first three tracks ("Politically Correct," "Right Now," and "What A Mess" are really good.

Fourth track "Last Man On The Moon" is easily the best with hooks and drive to spare. But after that, things fall off with "Fame (What She's Waiting For)" with the biting "loser boyfriend" line being the last memorable shot. Closing track "Paul McCartney" is forgettable ballad drivel. You know, once there was a time when Paul could really Rock. Why not celebrate that?

"Tomorrow" also starts strong. From opener "They All Fall Down," to "She Was Dead," it delivers. After that, there are only three less-than-stellar tracks. So if you're won over before then, great. If not, well, that's the way it goes.

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