Monday, May 07, 2012

OFF!: "OFF!" (album review)

I can't remember the last time a punk rock group came around with the pedigree of OFF!  The members collectively have ties to Circles Jerks, Black Flag, Redd Kross, and Rocket From the Crypt, among other acts.

It's obvious that they've taken their experiences to heart.  Their self-titled debut full length takes the best elements of hardcore punk (the energy and raw emotion), and tempers them.

The album opener, and lead single, "Wiped Out" is instantly catchy.  Tracks like "I Got News for You" and "Vaporized" allow a power pop sensibility to creep in.

The guitars throughout are blistering.  They give songs like "Man from Nowhere" and "Cracked" their full-throttle drive, not to mention adding the killer the "Sonic Reducer"-like intro to "King Kong Brigade".  However, the rhythm section don't let themselves be left behind.  Unlike many punk rock acts, the drums and bass keep up, filling in the bottom end for a very full sound.

With 16 tracks the record clocks in at an efficient 16 minutes.  The songs from from 0:42 to an absolutely epic 1:37, so there's little wasted effort, and more importantly little time for the songs to get on your nerves.  If you don't like one, do a lap around your house and the next one will be on.

OFF! play the Sound Academy in Toronto on July 22 & 23 with Refused.

Best tracks: "Wiped Out", "King Kong Brigade"

Track listing for OFF!:
  • Wiped Out
  • I Got News For You
  • Elimination
  • Cracked
  • Wrong
  • Borrow And Bomb
  • Toxic Box
  • Man from Nowhere
  • Jet Black Girls
  • King Kong Brigade
  • Harbor Freeway Blues
  • Feelings Are Meant To Be Hurt
  • Vaporized
  • 503
  • Zero for Conduct
  • I Need One (I Want One)

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