RIOT/CLONE: Success: CD

If I hadn’t plowed through the fat lyric booklet that came with this thing, I’d swear I was listening to something that could’ve come out on Bluurg, Crass, or Spiderleg twenty-five years ago. And that’s not a bad thing at all. Think anthemic, snotty British punk that could’ve wound up on any a Punk and Disorderly comp with nary a furrowed brow. After listening to this thing quite a few times and reading what they have to say, I found myself liking this band more and more. The lyrics are smart and topical and do a great job of toeing the line between sincerity, sarcasm, and self-effacement. All the songs include explanations, and the band comes across as just being humble, genuine guys. And if some of the songs have a tendency to extend themselves a bit too long, it’s fine; they’re keeping it punk and shit, and refusing to grapple with gross-ass metal-fusion wankery that many long-time bands have a tendency to start meddling with. They’ve been together since 1980 and Success is their swan song—the band’s calling it a day. It’s a pretty goddamn rad epitaph—music that wholeheartedly embraces their roots, their foundation, while lyrically keeping things current without skimping on any of the anger or content. Nice job all around.

 –keith (Dr. Strange)