The late 1980s was an interesting time for hardcore and punk. It went from being loud, fast, and short to something a bit more tuneful, melodic, and poppy. At the time I didn’t really give it much thought. Maybe it was a gradual change, or maybe I was just stoked to hear new music. Hearing and seeing how punk was growing and changing was pretty damn amazing at the time. Granted, when Frogs Of War first came on the scene, the U.K. had bands like Ripcord, Heresy, Napalm Death, and more. But these guys seemed more influenced by Snuff, and maybe Thatcher On Acid (whom they remind me of, especially on the song “U.S.A.”), and bands like Soul Side, and Naked Raygun. The music is driving and catchy without being sappy or saccharine. You can hear the bass pushing everything through and the guitars riding over the top. The vocals are sung and not screamed, while the backup vocals emphasize the melodic elements. Political and social commentary without being heavy handed or blatantly obvious. This CD collects their LP (which is the title of this collection), a four song session from 1991, and The Gunpowder Plot Noodle demo from 1990. It definitely sounds dated by today’s interests, but that doesn’t mean this is not worth listening to. As much as I love the early hardcore sound, I’m also hoping today’s participants look around for different inspiration. If you’re looking at what punk of the past did, you might want to look here for something a bit different from today. Glad I got this!
–M.Avrg (Boss Tuneage, bosstuneage.com)