Jul 20, 2022

The best thing that’s come across my turntable all year, no shit. Straw Man Army’s second long-player is an urgent plea for change, a flag of warning and hope flying with the same intensity (and well-written inserts) of Ebullition screamo of any of your favorite anarcho bands, the latter of which this duo draw obvious influences. Yet SOS is aware of audience in a way that Crass or even Zounds weren’t. Those groups (and early Discharge, of course) made the brutality of their aural experience an extension of the message, a take-it-or-leave-it proposition which found tons of listeners choosing option B with fingers in ears. Straw Man Army’s paeans against capitalism and its world-destroying implications are performed and arranged to be heard. I don’t blame you if that last sentence makes you wary. There’s no saccharine on SOS. The album relies instead on the same sort of brainy, trebly arrangements as Landowner, or a less satiric Uranium Club. Vital and utterly fantastic. –Michael T. Fournier (D4MT Labs Inc.)