RAW POWER: You Are the Victim: CD

This is Raw Power’s debut, originally released in 1983 and pretty hard to come by. I think it’s the first time on CD. Personally, it’s my favorite period of Raw Power. Couple it with Screams from the Gutter, and you’ve got yourself some grade-A hardcore listening. These Italians were and are (they’re still active and touring) part of the international hardcore scene, very much in line with, but not copying, MDC, Minor Threat, DOA, and Black Flag. This early on, their metal influences were slight-to-occasional soloing and what you have is archetypal, pissed-off, full-force, raw and perfect hardcore that bands, twenty years after, have still yet to top. Raw Power emerged at a time when hardcore was so far off the radar screen and its fans were so rabid and dedicated, that their influence was truly worldwide and soaked up in the States with relish. They had tracks on the influential BCT tapes, MRR’s Welcome to 1984 comp, and the Rat Music for Rat People comp. As a bonus, there’s live video footage, a slew of demos, interviews, poster art, and photos. If you didn’t want to spend the clink on getting the original vinyl, fear scratching it if you already own it, or want a well-packaged glimpse at some important punk roots, this is a great way to do it.

 –todd (Soulforce)