Wednesday, October 14, 2009


Last summer, I saw Rancid at Irving Plaza in NYC and was blown away, as I have been every single time I've seen them... starting with a gig when they totally blew away The Offspring at Roseland in the summer of '94 (when Offspring were just becomming the biggest band in the land). But I was curious how much I'd like their next album; I don't love their last two albums, 2000's Rancid and 2003's Indestructable. I like, but don't love, Lars Frederiksen's solo records, and Tim Armstrong's other band The Transplants. (However, I love Tim's 2007 solo album A Poet's Life).

Let The Dominoes Fall, which sees them returning to Epitaph, and Bad Religion guitarist/Epitaph boss Brett Gurewitz returning as their producer, is a classic. It's just fun, but deep and moving. I know that lots of indie bands like Pavement will invoke punk rock, but to me this is punk rock with heart, soul and blood. Every word means something, every note is supposed to be there. Tons of great songs that I can't wait to hear live. The expanded version features a bonus disc with acoustic (or demo) versions of the songs. Few of the songs exceed three minutes, but one of the more suprising ones, "Civilian Ways," breaks four. It's an acoustic ballad about a soldier who comes back from the Middle East, and nothing is the same. It brings a lump to my throat. Totally non-partisan and really moving. I wish more people would hear this song - and this album. But the blogs and the media are looking elsewhere. Luckily for you, you're reading this. Now go and check this album out.

Other Best of '09 albums: Bob Dylan's Together Through Life , The Cocktail Slippers' Saint Valentine's Day Massacre ,

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