Not many bands are able to say that they played nearly 500 shows in nine years all over Europe but Christmas can. So, It all makes sense that right here right now ‘Live & Lewd’ just about sums up exactly where these hardcore punk rock and rollers are at.

Leaving nothing to chance and certainly leaving nothing on the stage (or the pit) Christmas are a full-force experience and this recording recorded last year proves that. It’s a 100% bullshit free zone with loud guitars and lots of full-throttle noise.

Classics like “Moonshine Love”, “Appetite For Self-destruction” or “Cracksong” as well as the new song “Go Hard Or Go Home” kick the shit out of anyone’s speakers. These German road dogs love touring that much is obvious and whilst the studio albums are treats its live where they rule and this is as good a representation as any.  Its real hardcore in your face no overdubs no bullshit and feedback howling fast as fuck punk rock.

 

At times these guys will give the likes of Poison Idea a run for their money and some.  the immense ‘Suicide Girls’ is right out of that old school Hardcore pocket and is brutal as fuck as is the pounding ‘Army Of Losers’.

Sixteen songs in half an hour I’d expect nothing less and to maintain the power, pace and intensity is testament to just how good a band Christmas is.  After songs like ‘I Hate’ played without any overdubs and just pounding the listener from the off I feel the need to go find someone just to hug them and for them to tell me everything will be alright. ‘You Bore Me’ is awesome a bit like pretty much all of this.  More punk than punk more hardcore than hardcore live and Lewd is exactly that exactly what it says on the tin.  Champion stuff indeed I suggest you get on this if you love noisy fuckers kicking seven shades out of their instruments with all the finesse and style of a prime time prizefighter Christmas deliver a live album just like you’d hope they would.  ‘Go Hard Or Go Home’ couldn’t have put it better myself – Ave it!

LIVE & LEWD will be released September 6th, on Digipack CD in a limited edition of 100 copies.

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Author: Dom Daley

In a career that’s lasted nearly forty years and a whopping seventeen albums, this isn’t a band who’ve sat back and looked away from flexing their socio-political views whenever possible, and for a band with tracks like American Jesus and 21st Century (Digital Boy) that rank among their biggest, there’s been a clear response to it. And as the world continues to burn more and more each day, what better time for Bad Religion to resurface and take society’s ills to task once more?

 

Essentially its Bad Religion doing Bad Religion; For a band as right on as Bad Religion these are times that just keep giving and in return, Bad Religion keeps giving back.

As Brett Gurewitz said, “The band has always stood for enlightenment values. Today, these values of truth, freedom, equality, tolerance, and science, are in real danger. This record is our response.”

I guess it was time to don the shit kickers and kick some shit then.  From the opening frantic burst of ‘Chaos From Within’ it’s slick it’s fast it driven and the guitar solo is a ball of fire lasting the blink of an eye there’s no time for bloated introductions, it’s on with the punk rock show. ‘My Sanity’ is fast but has a heartfelt melody with lush harmonies mixing sweet tunes with fast sharp punk exactly what Bad Religion is best at.  The pace is constant for the first four songs and its not until ‘Lose Your Head’ does the pace relent.  Another excellent song By the time you get to the album highpoint that is the acoustic driven ‘Candidate’ the band demonstrates right there how vital they are and how their sound is timeless and ageless.  Graffin and Gurewitz have plenty of anger and are articulate enough to relay it through their music in a constructive and authoritative way. They go from the melodic ‘Candidate’ to the pounding ‘Faces Of Grief’ that thrashes and gasps for oxygen before ending sharply.

The ebb and flow through fourteen tracks is the sound of old pros knowing exactly how to deliver what they do to perfection its not easy staying ahead of the curve and remaining relevant in todays music scene but with such a plentiful pool of inspiration how can you not love the groove on songs like ‘Big Black Dog’ and if I’m honest the second half of this record is even stronger and the band also take a chance on breaking the pace and frantic style and their canon of songs is expanded further.

Bad Religion are one of those bands I never realise how many of their records I have until a new one comes out and I always like what I hear and am slightly taken aback at their body of work.   Yet their standards are always really high even if you probably know what you’re going to get before the needle drop. That’s not a criticism by the way if the music is consistently strong as their is which is exactly why they’ve released so many and have maintained their popularity after all these years.  Long may it continue because the world needs BAd Religion right here right now.

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Author: Dom Daley

I like it when a band takes its time to get the album they want but we all giggled when Axl took however long to knock out a guns n Roses album well Johnny Seven don’t like to rush a record release either but these punk rockers took forty years! Yup, I did say Forty Four Zero.  Don’t giggle at the back it’s true. Anyway its here now the format might be different to what was originally envisaged but times change and so do lineups.

 

you might well ask yourself what this Teeside foursome are all about well, let me tell you they clearly have a collective ear for a decent tune and I’m pretty sure judging by the songs they wrote we’d share a lot of similarities in our record collections.  One thing they got spot on is when they declared you can’t escape Rock and Roll and that spot on as is this tune.  It’s sloppy – it’s rough and ready – its got a great guitar sound and I love a good gang sing-a-long chorus and ‘Can’t Escape’ has certainly got that. ‘LSD’ is a rolling riff borrowed (or Stolen) and the lyrics show the band has a sense of humour and a rollicking interlude between the more serious elements of Rock and Roll. Don’t do drugs kids they’re bad for you.

‘In Detroit’ they give the Wah Wah a good work out and rattle through Motor City Nice n sleazy does it boys nice n sleazy. They turn the clock back for a sid style romp through ‘Burning Love’ I wouldn’t say its rubbish because its not but if you want to pop the kettle on nows your chance.  I’m not sure this record needed a cover smack bang in the middle to be honest because they were going so well with their own material. ‘Pumping The Pop’ is more like it.  snot ‘n’ sweat flying everywhere as the band get trashy not a million miles from The DeRellas here or the Babysitters when they weren’t singing about trembly noses. and the guitar and handclaps remind me of Hanoi when they were doing the duck and the guitar lick isn’t a million miles away from ‘Shakes’ so I was always going to like this one.

There’s a reckless edge to ‘Car Crash Girls’ and I like it it sounds spontaneous and at any point could fall or stumble over and Rock and Roll needs that sometimes it keeps proceedings exciting which is where we head as the album moves towards its conclusion.  ‘Skinheads’ is a wonderful stomping slice of glam pop in the same snotty vein as The Boys, great melody and a great look back. Finally, we reach the end of what has been a really good record and one I have enjoyed and ‘Hang Loose’ takes this bad boy home with another sleazy rocker that kinda pulls all the previous influences together for one last hurrah as the band goes over the top and into battle once more.

I spose like busses the follow up will be right behind this one dyou think someone should tell the band that Blakey won’t be collecting the fares on it though? Forty years for fucks sake but like a good wine it’s finally reached maturity and its ready to be enjoyed and I certainly did that.

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Author: Dom Daley