UNDERCLASS UK: Rip Your Face Off: CD

This ended up being a much more emotionally exhausting listen than I had anticipated. I expected a straightforward oi album, with all the usual working class rah-rah-rah junk. The first track sets the stage with some of the typical talk of facing your fears. But then, track-by-track, it digs a little deeper. “How’s Your Father?” is about working class kids growing up without parents, left to raise themselves on their own after they are abandoned. Then, it gets harrowing to the point where it’s difficult to listen to the track “Groomed,” about how these same kids become targets for predators. If you are into oi, this is probably worth checking out, but brace yourself because this is not really music for drinking a pint at the pub. –MP Johnson (Punk Lives Live, underclassuk.bandcamp.com)