May 30, 2014

This, along with Quintessentials, marked something like twenty years of the UK Subs and original guitarist Nicky Garratt coming back temporarily to mark the occasion. I remember liking this quite a bit when it was first released around 1996/97. It’s nowhere near as good as the early stuff, but held up against a lot of what was coming out in the 1990s, this isn’t too bad. They had one foot in the past and one in the present of that time. The punkier edges were softened to some degree with the poppy tendencies of what was passing as punk in the dreadful ‘90s. “Paradise Burning” has a main riff that recalls the Subs in their glory years, though the reggae influence derails the song. There are some moments, with songs like “Human Rights,” “Preacher,” and the title track, but none of them are exactly scorchers. Nowhere near on par with “C.I.D.” or “Stranglehold.” On the whole, this record did not age well—okay songs surrounded by a lot of filler and not something I would go back to when I can listen to the earlier, stronger, and better material. 

 –M.Avrg (Papagajuv Hlasatel,