No Doubt Gwen Stefani

No Doubt

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No Doubt built their reputation the old-fashioned way: gigging relentlessly in and around LA where they frequently turned in high-octane sets at venues such as The Whisky A-Go-Go, Fender's Grand Ballroom and The Roxy, where they could often be found propping up bills for luminaries such as Fishbone and fellow SoCal ska-popsters The Untouchables. Thanks to Gwen Stefani's increasingly alluring stage presence and the band's energetic set of hooky, ska-flavored punk-pop songs, record companies began to take note and, in 1990, No Doubt landed a multi-album deal with the newly created Interscope imprint.

Though they'd pulled off a coup signing with the upwardly mobile and highly respected label, mainstream success initially eluded No Doubt. Their self-titled debut LP was released in 1992, but while it sold a decent number of copies, it appeared at a time when grunge was still in vogue and the industry was reeling from the shockwaves emanating from Seattle. No Doubt's bright, horn-laden ska-pop was anathema at a time when bands such as Nirvana and Pearl Jam were shifting serious units; they doggedly toured the US in support of their self-titled debut, No Doubt struggled to attract a sizeable audience outside of their Southern Californian stomping ground.

Ostensibly their first official single, "Trapped In A Box" was admittedly too out there for the radio of the time. It wasn't aggressively promoted and largely fell upon deaf ears in a world enthralled with an "alternative revolution" mainly centered on male aggression. That changed soon enough though. The horn section and quasi-ska rhythms remain inspired by early Madness/Fishbone influences, while the emerging sense of flow and pop bounce makes the track a benchmark for the time and a notable milestone today.

  1. BND
  2. Let's Get Back
  3. Ache
  4. Get On The Ball
  5. Move On
  6. Sad For Me
  7. Doormat
  8. Big City Train
  9. Trapped In A Box
  10. Sometimes
  11. Sinking
  12. A Little Something Refreshing
  13. Paulina
  14. Brand New Day

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