According to the liner notes, Big Mistake is an EP that was recorded eight years ago during a time when No Brain was trying to start in the United States. Issues between the U.S. label lead to the EP getting shelved and the band went back to focus on South Korea again. So this EP is from 2013, though most of No Brain’s music is timeless.
While I think No Brain’s music jumps back between punk and rock music, Big Mistake leans further into punk rock. Songs like “Uh-Huh” are simple and direct while highlighting each member’s experience. And since the EP was meant to be a U.S. release, all the vocals are in English. It’s kind of sad that this didn’t get released when it was originally planned because it could have found an audience easily.
No Brain doesn’t have a lot of embellishments on Big Mistake, just listen to “Take A Long Line.” It moves from verse to verse quickly, not just from the tempo, but the arrangement. It’s also one of my favorite songs because it takes the normal four-beat verse and pounds that into your ears.
Also impressively, No Brain is able to show off different sides of its sound. “I Will Fight” is a little slower, but also highlights its ability to create songs that offer a lot of audience participation. It’s a fun, groove-heavy song that is addictive.
It’s interesting to hear 2013 songs in 2022 because No Brain has been around for over 25 years. That’s more than a lot of music, it’s a lot of growing and experiences that help craft each song. Big Mistake would have come after their 2011 album High Tension and would have been the perfect follow-up.
Ultimately, it’s great that No Brain was able to release the EP because it only adds to their comprehensive discography and continues to show why they are influential in the Korean music industry.