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Strait Up
Various Artists
Strait Up
Genres: Jazz, Pop, Rock, Soundtracks, Broadway & Vocalists
  •  Track Listings (15) - Disc #1

Snot singer James Lynn Strait had a lot of friends, if this intensely emotional tribute is any indication. Strait died in a December 1998 car accident, with Snot on the verge of breaking big, thanks to critical kudos and a...  more »


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CD Details

All Artists: Various Artists
Title: Strait Up
Members Wishing: 0
Total Copies: 0
Label: Immortal
Original Release Date: 11/7/2000
Release Date: 11/7/2000
Album Type: Enhanced, Explicit Lyrics
Genres: Jazz, Pop, Rock, Soundtracks, Broadway & Vocalists
Styles: Swing Jazz, Oldies, Musicals, Traditional Vocal Pop
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaCD Credits: 1
UPCs: 724385036408, 724385036415, 724385036521

Snot singer James Lynn Strait had a lot of friends, if this intensely emotional tribute is any indication. Strait died in a December 1998 car accident, with Snot on the verge of breaking big, thanks to critical kudos and a stint on Ozzfest '98. Strait Up features a dozen of heavy rock's most prominent singers, including Limp Bizkit's Fred Durst, Korn's Jonathan Davis, Incubus's Brandon Boyd, and Sugar Ray's Mark McGrath paying homage to the late frontman. In 1998, Snot's Mikey Doling and John "Tumor" Fahenstock had music awaiting lyrics from Strait, who passed away before beginning the album. So the singers on Strait Up wrote their own lyrics to Snot's heavy music and recorded with the surviving members of Snot. The results are impressive. System of a Down's Serj Tankian offers up a eulogy in "Starlit Eyes": "The first to accept, the last to disappoint / Now you are free to roam the skies." Slipknot's Corey Taylor turns in a melodic but aggro "Requiem," singing: "I see the loss every time someone says your name." But it's the mellow emotion exuded by Sevendust's Lajon Witherspoon in "Angel's Son" that is the standout on a powerful album full of poignant triumphs. --Katherine Turman

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Joseph K. from AGOURA HILLS, CA
Reviewed on 6/25/2007...
Great CD, perfect condition

CD Reviews

Snot's missing opus
Rubin Carver | Gilbert, AZ USA | 02/21/2006
(4 out of 5 stars)

"On December 11, 1998, Snot vocalist Lynn Strait was on his way to Los Angeles to work on the second Snot album when he got in a car accident that claimed his life. Meanwhile, the rest of the band had just finished demoing the music for 9 new songs when they got the call that Lynn was gone.

There are really two ways to look at this album - as a tribute to Lynn from his friends and bandmates, and as a glimpse into the aborted second Snot album, which with Lynn's death was doomed never to happen. Obviously it is a very touching gesture and a testament to how many lives Lynn affected. However, Lynn's death was also the death of one of the best metal bands of the era and while the lyrics are in many cases a heartfelt send-off for a good friend, the music is a scrapbook providing a glimpse into what Snot could have become.

First, lyrically, there are some very touching lyrics. What is interesting is how many different reactions Lynn's death incited - from Serj's poetic celebration of Lynn's virtues to Jonathan Davis's anger and feelings of betrayal and Corey Taylor's shock. Among the more disappointing deliveries is Fred Durst's inane ranting on "Forever"... on one hand, it can be seen as a reaction to the self-rightous a-hole DJ's and music critics who dismissed Lynn as just another worthless drug casualty, which is an honest enough reaction. But at the same time, why sully Lynn's memory by calling out his enemies on this tribute? Also, "Reaching Out" has mostly nonsense lyrics, even though the tune is one of the best on the album musically.

Seen as a glimpse into Snot's aborted second album, Strait Up is both fascinating and massively frustrating. What is immediatly clear is that Snot's music was becoming significantly more dark and serious. These tunes don't even need the somber lyrics to be heavy-hearted, as the music is just a lot more brutal and angry than most of the punk/jazz-core found on Get Some.

It should be pointed out that there are actually 15 tracks on this album. However, the band only wrote 9 new songs as of when Lynn passed away. So which songs constitute Snot's hypothetical second album? Well the 15th "hidden" track is a remixed soup of Snot songs and a few recordings of Lynn's spoken voice. Interesting, but not that listenable, and clearly not something that was written in the regular sense.

The only performance by the full band Snot on this album is "Absent", probably the band's single most emotionally powerful song. However, while this version is remixed and cleaned up for Strait Up, it was originally released on the Strangeland soundtrack, and was not one of the 9 new songs. It may have landed on Snot's LP2 though, and it is a perfect example of how much more powerful and dark Snot's music was becoming at this time. The music to "Sad Air" was written by ex Snot guitarist Sonny Mayo in response to Lynn's passing. While it is a very emotional track, with what I assume is one of Lynn's last interviews, it wouldn't have existed without his death.

"Ozzy Speaks" is a spoken word tribute from Ozzy Osbourne at the center of the album. "Angel's Son", on the other hand, is an absolutely beautiful ballad featuring singer Lajon Witherspoon from Sevendust. Actually, it features several other members of Sevendust, and was written by Sevendust guitarist Clint Lowerly. It is a great song but it is a Sevendust song and an alternate version can be found at the end of Sevendust's third album, Animosity.

All the rest of the songs are Snot songs, but one of them had to be written explicitely for this tribute album, since there are 10 tracks left. Well "Starlit Eyes" is for certain one the songs, since a version of it exists with Lynn's vocals, under the name "Choose What?" This song is a frenzied, intense metal track that is passionate in either version (but especially in the version with Lynn.)

Using "Absent" as an archetype for the overall vibe of new Snot songs (and using Get Some as a pallette of musical devices characteristic to this band,) several equally dynamic tracks can be assumed to be would-be LP2 songs. "I Know Where You're At" is a song that develops quite gradually and is musically a trip in a way old Snot wasn't. Granted, the hip-hop beat in the intro was probably added when M.C.U.D. was the confirmed as the guest vocalist, but the rest of the track is clearly Snot in origin. "Requiem" is even creepier than "Absent" and would probably have been one of my favorite Snot songs. I can only imagine what Lynn would have done with it. "Reaching Out" is of a slower pace than any previous Snot songs but has the same dark edge as the rest of the music on here, and the last minute and a half or so is ethereal. "Take It Back" is musically one of the lesser of these songs, being a bit heavy in a more 'cliche' nu metal way than the other songs, but maintains a similar style and was probably set for release on the next album.

Snot also had a penchant for fun and fast punk songs, a description which can easily be applied to "Until Next Time" (which was written by Lynn himself) and "Funeral Flights." However, three tracks have almost no resemblance to anything else by Snot and one of these was probably written to accomodate the guest singer - "Forever,""Divided," and "Catch a Spirit." The first song actually does have some telltale Snot lead towards the end, so my money is either on the bubblegum-sweet "Divided" or the tribal "Catch a Spirit." They're just too tailored to their respective guest singers. Both are good songs, especially "Divided", although not standouts on the album.

It is clear that Snot's second album was going to be amazing, and it is more than a little frustrating that we will never get it or any other future output from this band. Having not known Lynn personally, I'm not going to pretend I feel the pain these people felt from his passing, but it did make me pretty sad - this effort affected me strongly when it came out and I think I have more appreciation for their personal loss through it.

It is a bit depressing to sit through this record once you know the lyrics, especially if you make it all the way to "Sad Air," but I recommend it strongly - musically it is an accomplishment and even if you don't care for one or more of the guest artists, there's a high likelihood you'll find at least a few songs on it that you like. It is a MUST for fans of the band, who where left wanting more after Get Some."
Lamenting the loss of a metal hero
Andrew Lueken | Louisville, KY United States | 11/10/2000
(4 out of 5 stars)

"This is truely a tear jerker of an album for fans of Lynn Strait. I found myself brushing away tears or smiling at certain moments of songs that recount the exploits of the metal outfit Snot. Snots lead singer and his beloved dog Dobbs were killed in a multiple car pileup on a California interstate. The album is almost entirely a roaring metal masterwork but there are moments such as "Angels Son", a haunting ballad-esque song performed by the remaining members of Snot and several members of Sevendust. Lajons(Sevendusts lead singer) vocal and lyrical talents are a force to be reckoned with. The video is even more touching with his mother, his girlfriend, and members of bands who once toured with Lynn Strait coming together. Bradon Boyd of Incubus puts in his two bits as well with "Divided(an arguement for the soul)" a more aggressive song that mourns Lynns passing. The most compelling tracks come from Serj Tankian(System of a Down) "Starlit Eyes" and John Davis(Korn) "Take it Back" who seemed to have befriended Lynn on a personal level, and sang of his exploits and his lust for life. One of the most haunting and powerfull tracks however is performed by Snot as a whole, before Lynns passing. The song is titled "Absent" first appearing on the Strangeland soundtrack(the best version of the song, it starts with a gut wrenching scream from Lynn before diving into the song.) The Strangeland soundtrack has most of the artists on this tribute cd as well. It is a must have for fans of the metal genre as a whole. Take a look at it on Amazons search engine. Other artists who contribute to the tribute album include Mark Mcgrath of SugarRay, Dez of Coal Chamber, Corey of Slipknot, M.C.U.D of Hed(PE), Max Cavalera of Soul Fly and Fred Durst of LimpBizkit fame. If You enjoyed Snot or even just one of the bands who took part of this project then it is worth at least a listen, and likely your money, as it will be given to a charity in his memory. Long live the Spirit of James Lynn Strait and Dobbs."