Wolves In Wolves´ Clothing

Written by: PP on 30/04/2006 04:47:54

"I'm not here to entertain you." states the opening line of the new NOFX album "Wolves In Wolves' Clothes", an ironic statement directed towards their fans and critics alike. Like the rest of the song "60%" sarcastically implies, the band attacks people who don't like their albums as well as todays trendy emo and metalcore movements. Or how else would you interpret "Would you rather be fed bullshit

from some 20-something, makeup wearing, popstar", a line from the very same song.

It's great to hear that NOFX has stepped down their political attacks a notch in favour of singing about getting drunk, rolling in poo and all the usual debauchery what we're used to from classic albums like "Punk In Drublic" and "Pump Up The Valuum". The songwriting is as great as it has always been with NOFX, with songs like "Seeing Double At The Triple Rock" and "USA-Holes" featuring fast-paced, memorable riffage and the ever-so witty and finger-pointing lyrics making fun of American society, and as a new aspect, Christians. Yes, "Leaving Jesusland", "The Man I Killed" and "You Will Lose Faith" are brutal attacks on Christian conservatism, where the latter is describing worst-case scenarios and consequently asking "where is your God now?" in a demeaning manner.

Stylistically, NOFX is still recycling the same riffs they've been doing for the last 15 years or so. But who the fuck cares, when the outcome is 18 (+1 hidden) tracks worth of the best skatepunk on the planet. "Benny Got Blowed Up" is one of the highlights of the album, resembling my favorite from the last album "We Got Too Jealous Agains", while "Cantando En Español" represents the mandatory weird-ass song every NOFX album must have. "Instant Crassic" is one of the silly songs where Fat Mike sings about swimming in poo and equates that to being at a hip-hop festival. However, it's not all about being silly on the album. NOFX has in several occasions proven that they can also be intelligent and do it again in the title-track and "Door Nails", where on the prior the band is referring to 'Animal Farm', the famous novel by George Orwell, among other literary references, and on the latter the band contemplates the suicide of Derrick Plourde of Lagwagon last year. "The Marxist Brothers" gives credit to the classic Propagandhi, Chumbawamba and Rage Against The Machine records as well as debates about recent world events like the G8 protests, while at the same time recognizing recent cultural advancements by referring to podcasts and eBay bidding. Unfortunately (or maybe it is on purpose?), way too many people won't be able to understand these subtle hints at todays society, and specially the literary and political references are too intelligent for most of the general public to understand.

If there's one universal truth in life, it is that NOFX very, VERY rarely writes a bad song, which is evident on this effort as well. All the songs are great, and despite their shortness (average lenght ~2minutes), the 18 tracks are catchy, melodic and the lyrics are easy to understand, yet they are incredibly well written and convey both simple and complex ideas with perfect wit. It's almost like South Park's social awareness, only in a resonating context. Like the band itself states on the closing track "60% (Reprise)": "We're the band with our own label, that's money under the table, that's answering to no one" and "Which means we make more money, we've got better prescriptions, we own most of our own music, no one's got their hands in our pockets, We don't have management, we get to play loaded, and only 3 months a year". The NOFX guys have always been great at making fun of themselves. But one thing is for sure: NOFX are back (were they ever gone?), and their songs are still extremely fun to listen to. 18 tracks (+ a hidden track containing 7" club demos) of punk rock at its best, this is the quintessential punk rock album to get this year.


Download: Leaving Jesusland, Seeing Double At The Triple Rock, Benny Got Blowed Up
For the fans of: Bad Religion, Pennywise, Lagwagon
Listen: Myspace, Purevolume, Fat Wreck

Release date 18.04.2006
Fat Wreck Chords

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