Music » CD Reviews

The Offspring

Splinter (Columbia)


Give the Offspring credit. Built on a suspect hook and issued in a genre that had yet to establish its commercial viability, the band's 1994 smash single, "Keep 'Em Separated," had all the makings of a one-hit wonder. The California punkers' 15 minutes have now lasted a decade. After Smash, the band signed to Columbia and quickly learned to play the game, working a reliable ability to turn in catchy pop singles ("I Choose") and novelty songs ("Pretty Fly for a White Guy") while retaining some underground cred by funding punk label Nitro with their dividends.

On Splinter, the band's seventh LP, Offspring's trademarks are still in full effect: Singer Dexter Holland's "Ohhh-ohhh/ waaay-ohhh" vox, guitarist Noodles' arena-rock power chords, blow-by-blow details of zany misadventures, and lessons to be learned from their mistakes. This album's topics include drinking, promiscuous sex, and dropping the soap in a prison shower. Musically, the aging punks indulge dalliances: They unplug ("Spare Me the Details" plays like big-beat Jimmy Buffet) and dabble in electronica ("Hit That") and ska ("The Worst Hangover Ever"). The closer is a hardcore-lite rave-up ("Da Hui"); after lollygagging through the rest of the disc, they ought to have some energy left.

We welcome readers to submit letters regarding articles and content in Cleveland Scene. Letters should be a minimum of 150 words, refer to content that has appeared on Cleveland Scene, and must include the writer's full name, address, and phone number for verification purposes. No attachments will be considered. Writers of letters selected for publication will be notified via email. Letters may be edited and shortened for space.

Email us at

Support Local Journalism.
Join the Cleveland Scene Press Club

Local journalism is information. Information is power. And we believe everyone deserves access to accurate independent coverage of their community and state. Our readers helped us continue this coverage in 2020, and we are so grateful for the support.

Help us keep this coverage going in 2021. Whether it's a one-time acknowledgement of this article or an ongoing membership pledge, your support goes to local-based reporting from our small but mighty team.

Join the Cleveland Scene Press Club for as little as $5 a month.