EXPLOITED, THE: Horror Epics: CD

This album marks the point when Wattie and I parted ways, he going on to be exploited by New York metal labels, and I to my next band of choice. There’s still quite a bit of the old fire to be found on this album, with the anti-authoritarian/anti-war slant to the lyrics and hardcore overdrive still intact, and the vast majority of the songs are mighty swell, but something felt like they were on the cusp of change, and listening to this nearly twenty years after my first listen, I still get that feeling. It’s there, buried somewhere in the electronic-sounding drums. They were losing focus and, after listening recently to their most recent effort, it seems that Wattie has, in the ensuing years, chosen to tilt at vague windmills rather than resort to pointed attacks at those in power as he did in days of yore. Damn shame, ‘cause when they were at the top of their game, as evidenced here on thrashers like “Maggie” and “Don’t Forget the Chaos,” and on the title tack, an interesting foray into the world of post-punk, few could touch ‘em. With so much of the current generation of parrot punks mired in style, a misguided glorification of poverty and bland, safe and pointless sloganeering, one of their heroes illustrating how to use their moment on stage to lob bombs at the power structure instead of wasting it on singing odes to beer and screaming “fuck you” would be essential. Sadly, it looks like it ain’t gonna come from the current incarnation of this band.

 –jimmy (Captain Oi)