Los Angeles Punk band Bad Religion are set to release their 17th studio album on May 3rd on renowned label Epitaph Records. Known for their fast paced and melodic style the band has always been an advocate for humanism and individualism. It’s to no surprise then that the band has come together to produce another album to voice their opinion on the current state of affairs in the US and beyond. “The band has always stood for enlightenment values,” co-songwriter and guitarist Brett Gurewitz explains. “Today, these values of truth, freedom, equality, tolerance, and science are in real danger. This record is our response.”
At a point in a band’s career when legacy has been cemented and the world traveled you’d think the foot would come off the gas and they would cruise the rest of the journey. “Age Of Unreason” is no such effort, it’s a middle finger to the people who continue to run this world into the ground with corruption and negligence. Their retort is an intellectual and interpestive well written record that has some top tracks.
“My Sanity” looks a the importance of holding onto your sanity in times of uncertainty and chaos. With the world consumed with conspiracy theories and alternative facts it is hard to tell what is true and honest, our minds are in a constant state of unnerving paranoia. This is where “Do The Paranoid” carries the album on with its almost dissonance sounding breakdowns, which definitely leaves you with a sense of mind shaking anxiety .
“End Of History” brings up the discussion of our responsibility to make sure we leave this world better off when we leave. All the climatic disasters that we as humans have caused will be what we are judged upon by later generations so we should prioritise taking steps to reduce and improve these.
Another track that really wraps up the story of this record is “candidate”. It expresses the bands feeling towards the political scene in America. How the presidential position is basically the ultimate celebrity win, and has come to be an empty position held by a elected mascot. That is the sense I get from this record as a whole, it rips open the fraudulent and feckless fabric that has been draped over the real problems in our current society.
Musically it is a typical Bad Religion record, melodic and hard hitting punk-rock. One that can be enjoyed on the surface as a great sounding album or to delve deeper and express your frustration with life as it is.
You can pre-order the record here.