This album would never have made it anywhere near this list a year ago. After growing up on rock, indie, and punk, I basically stopped listening to rock for three or four years while I explored hip hop, funk, jazz, and other genres that I hadn’t been exposed to much. Compared to the new, exciting sounds that I was discovering, rock just didn’t do it for me. This year I have plunged headfirst back into rock, helped in no small part by my explorations of the SST catalog (that this blog is named after a Minutemen song is a pretty decent indication of where my head has been at lately). I heard Black Flag’s debut, the Nervous Breakdown EP, for the first time this year, and I proceeded to follow original BF singer Keith Morris through his main band, the Circle Jerks, and on to his current project OFF! This debut album by the band packs sixteen songs into just under sixteen minutes and proves that hardcore punk is not exclusively a young man’s game. Keith Morris is 57 and easily sounds half that age as he spits his righteous fury on album standouts like “Borrow and Bomb” and “Toxic Box.”
OFF! - "Wiped Out"
Note: From the look of things, they're even better live. Here's a video of a live performance they did on the Sound Opinions radio show.
OFF! - "King Kong Brigade" (Live on Sound Opinions)