Tuesday, March 2, 2010

What one hardcore/punk album has stood the test of time for you?


Billy with Haywire at Gilman Street, 1990, Photo: Drew Traulsen


Billy Rubin - Half Off / Haywire

The hardcore/punk record that has stood the test of time is “London Calling” by the CLASH. This record is so relevant today that I sometimes wonder if it is fair to classify it as punk. The production quality is terrific, the blending of different musical styles is harmonic, and the layout/design/cover photo still gets me worked up. There are many great hardcore records but the truth is that for every single one of the greats there are 3-4 knock offs that came in the late 80’s or 90’s. No one has been able to do what the Clash managed to do and for that reason London Calling gets my vote.


Freddy Alva - New Breed compilation


KRAUT's "An Adjustment to Society" would be my pick. Besides being a sentimental favorite (1st. HC record I ever bought) & after 25-plus years, the LP's driving mid to fast tempos, soaring choruses & amazing guitar work still resonate with me. Quite a pedigree as well: 1st. HC video on MTV, backups by Steve Jones from the Pistols, future Cro-Magnon Doug Holland, Orchestral arrangements on Side 2 etc.. Them being from my neck of the woods (Queens), struck a chord w/me, too bad the CD reissue is so low on the mix. I know this song wasn't on the LP, but bonus points for best Teenage-HC libido: "I'm fucking my girl at the matinee!!"


Chris Lohman with Blackspot at The Chain Reaction, 3/2/09, Photo courtesy of: Blackspot


Chris Lohman - Blackspot / Collateral Damage

Cro-Mags, Age of Quarrel. The backbone of the music is simple, which gives all the songs clarity and rhythm. This means that it's easier for people to connect with, and that's what gives it its staying power. The vocals, guitar leads, and the drumming give the album the complexity and the depth it needs to stand the test of time...if those three elements weren't there, it would be just another punk album. The vocals are hard to replicate, which gives it originality, so it's nothing like anything you have heard before. It also was one of the first to combine punk/hardcore and metal. I personaly have been listening to this album since 1986 or so, and still when I hear the stick clicks at the beginning of We Gotta Know I still get that feeling of excitement. If you're into punk/hardcore or metal today you wouldn't be disappointed, it has metal leads and hardcore breakdowns that people still steal from now. This is an album that has to be in everyone's collection. Just look on Ebay, this record is getting close to being to 30 years old, and it's still being bought and sold. If it wasn't for this record, I think things in my life could be different. I'm not saying that things would turn out bad for me, I just would be into different music, and wouldn't be who I am today.

9 comments:

kaprookie said...

Nice work repping Queens, Freddy! I loved the All Twisted singalongs every time.

D. Sine said...

Can't go wrong with those three records. Good people picking good records.

ken said...

As I said on FB, there is so many great ones out there. I love Negative FX, Agnostic, the Raw deal demo, Can't close my eyes and I'd even put the Outburst 7" up there. But when it comes down to it there can be only one and for me that is definitely Age of Quarrel. Every single song on that album is ridiculous. When John, Harley and the gang made this album they broke the mold and it can never be replicated. Not even by them. By far the best hardcore album of all time.

Jake said...

Lohman. Fuck yeah!

Justin M. said...

Lohman is right on about AOQ. There are tons of records that stand the test of time for me, but for HARDCORE AOQ and the first few Bad Brains records are usually at the top of my list. Gotta give credit to the Inside Out EP as well.

all twisted said...

the age of quarrel demo is ten millions better. and thanks god there's a lot of better albums than the cromags one. anyway the cromags were great, and harley is a living legend.

Anonymous said...

yea, harley is some living legend. LOLZ

all twisted said...

yea, anonymous is some stupid asshole. LOLZ

Anonymous said...

wow, all twisted really bringing the heat. douche!