Monday, November 01, 2010

CD Review: The Dissent of Man

I have been listening to Bad Religion for quite a few years. I think I first started listening to them around the early 90s when the No Control album came out. Great album by the way.

I have come to expect quite a bit from this band as they have released some really really great albums. Suffer, No Control, Generator, and Stranger Than Fiction to name a few.

So the fact that I expect so much of this band does not make it easy for me to review one of their albums and to write a review on it.

So I'm not going to lie. When I first listened to The Dissent of Man, I have to say that I was not impressed. In fact, I was a little angry about the quality of the songs on the album. I began to wonder whether or not Bad Religion's music had gone downhill and wonder whether or not they had reached their peak several years ago.

It also made me a little upset because I remember that their previous album, New Maps of Hell, was really less than impressive and after multiple listenings, I still only like two songs from it: "New Dark Ages" and "Dearly Beloved." Kind of sad. So here I am thinking. Great. Two stinkers in a row. Maybe it is time to just quit relying on the boys to make quality albums anymore.

However, then I remembered back around 2002 when I first heard the album The Process of Belief. I really actually hated that album at first. But after subsequent listenings it began to grow on me.

So with that in mind, I started listening to it a few more times and I think it is safe to say that this album too will grow on me.

I think it is also safe to say (with the exception of New Maps of Hell) that Bad Religion just does not put out bad albums (oh yeah, I was not a big fan of The Empire Strikes First either come to think of it).

Aside from those, Bad Religion has consistently been putting out the same great music for 30 years. The only difference being that their songwriting chops have gotten progressively better, as has their production quality.

The Dissent of Man was released on September 24, 2010 by Epitaph, the record label that the band themselves started so many years ago. It was recorded between May and June 2010 and produced by Joe Barresi, who has also produced such bands as Melvins, Fu Manchu, and Pennywise. He also produced Bad Religion's previous album New Maps of Hell. The band lineup, which consists of Greg Graffin on vocals, Brett Gurewitz on guitar, Brian Baker on guitar, Greg Hetson on guitar, Jay Bentley on bass and Brooks Wackerman on drums, has remained consistent now for 4 albums.

Highlights of this album for me are "Only Rain" "Pride and the Pallor" "Wont Somebody" and "Ad Hominem."

Definitely worth at least checking out but if have never listened to their music before now, start with something like Stranger Than Fiction or Recipe for Hate first.


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