Random Pull: No Doubt — Tragic Kingdom

Random Pull / Special Features / October 4, 2016

Pressing: Second (1996, Translucent Orange)

Purchased: Port of Sound

I didn’t turn three until the tail end of 1995, which is around the time Tragic Kingdom came out. Despite not really listening to a lot of music other than what my parents listened to until some time in middle school, I quickly started to love No Doubt. I’ve recently come to notice that I’m also one of the few people I know who still looks forward to No Doubt (or Gwen Stefani) albums.

I grew up and currently live in Garden Grove. It’s not a California city many people have heard of so I typically tell them I live by Disneyland, which doesn’t always help. This is true, but Disneyland is in Anaheim, which is where No Doubt formed. Gwen Stefani went to school roughly 5-10 minutes from where I grew up. I think diving into some of the local Orange County bands is initially what led me to focus on the band so much. Radio hit after radio hit, I ended up with a greatest hits CD that I was allowed to play in my parents’ cars constantly. This is what led me to scope out the individual albums; Tragic Kingdom being one of them.

Surprisingly, this was a somewhat recent buy for me. I bought it a few months ago, and when I pulled it out of my collection, I wasn’t even sure if I had listened to it just yet. Writing this piece was the perfect reason to do so. The record is a translucent orange and I’ve always enjoyed the album cover. It’s one that easily stands out. Other than the record inside, there’s a lyric sheet with some photos of the band spread around on it. It’s nothing crazy, but it feels exactly how I imagine No Doubt wanted it to feel. No frills, just like their music.

This album is full of hits. “Spiderwebs” rips as an opener and you’re instantly engulfed in Gwen’s voice. You also get “Just A Girl,” “Sunday Morning,” and “Don’t Speak” on this album. All are singles from the album, but the title track isn’t one that can be forgotten. It closes it out and wraps up what is an all-around stellar album. I wish I would have started with this and not a collection of hits. There’s so much more to this album than just the hits and it reminds you of just how prominent No Doubt was in the mid-’90s. I enjoyed giving this a listen and if you ever want to dig into Southern California bands, No Doubt is one of those bands you just need to listen to.


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Deanna Chapman

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