CONFLICT: There Is No Power Without Control: CD

While I’ll be the first to admit (before my homies call me on it) I’ve never been much of a Conflict fan (based more on musical, rather than political, differences of opinion), I gotta say it’s mighty fine hearing these guys making a racket again. One of England’s premier anarcho punk bands that has been perplexingly lumped into the “street punk” ghetto for some reason in recent years, Conflict took the template laid out by contemporaries like Crass (with whom they shared a lead singer, although not at the same time), ratcheted up the intensity levels and tempos, and belched forth angry sheets of noisy punk that railed against the government, animal abusers, war, and corporations poised to take over the world. Given the fact that many of the very things they were attacking twenty years ago have, in some cases, become the norm, it will come as no surprise that their latest album is chock full of musical assaults on that very same power structure. Musically, they are just as harsh as they ever were, but after more than a decade of sugar-coated boy-pop preening and posturing as if it was somehow punk, their brand of sonic bludgeoning actually comes off as fresh and invigorating. Good stuff.

 –jimmy (SOS)