Bad Religion For President
You donâ€šÃ„Ã´t need to be a political scientist to notice that the Bush administration has been the muse for a lot of angry music lately, nor a rock journalist to predict that soon enough Bad Religion would step up for their turn at the US political piâˆšÂ±ata. Approaching their twentieth year together, Bad Religion has waged a war of its own with The Empire Strikes First, the bandâ€šÃ„Ã´s twelfth full-length and fiercest record in years. From the liner notes to the last chord it seems no one is safe from the fury of frontmen Greg Graffin and Brett Gurewitz. At the top of their list are those who they deem responsible for the war in Iraq, the dishonesty of the mass media, and the lack of concern for Americaâ€šÃ„Ã´s citizens. In the bandâ€šÃ„Ã´s traditional L.A. punk sound and soaring vocals, they take on the deception of blinding patriotism on â€šÃ„ÃºLet Them Eat Warâ€šÃ„Ã¹ with a charged chorus of â€šÃ„ÃºLet them eat war / Thatâ€šÃ„Ã´s how to ration the poor/ Thereâ€šÃ„Ã´s an urgent need to feed declining pride.â€šÃ„Ã¹ The mediaâ€šÃ„Ã´s creation of a fear culture becomes the target on â€šÃ„ÃºLos Angeles is Burningâ€šÃ„Ã¹ with â€šÃ„ÃºI cannot believe the media Mecca / Theyâ€šÃ„Ã´re only trying to battle reality / Catch it on prime time, story at nine.â€šÃ„Ã¹
The Empire Strikes First is a poetic but viciously critical attack on the political environment of the United States, an excellent combination of informed opinions over enraged power chords and breakneck drums that few bands are capable of producing.