The Damned: Grave Disorder

The Damned: Grave Disorder

The Damned: Grave Disorder
Label: Nitro
Release Date: 2001
Recording Date: 1968-1974
Review Date: 2004

The Offspring may have a history of uninspired cover versions of great songs like the Didjits “Killboy Powerhead” and the Damned’s “Smash it Up'” but at least Dexter Holland had the good sense to sign up the Damned to his own Nitro Records. Dexter, if you’re reading this, it’s too late to make it up to the Didjits, but there’s still time for their “offspring’ in the form of the ass-kicking Gaza Strippers. Where were we? Oh yes, The Damned! In case you’ve been sequestered in an office cube farm for the past 10 years, you already know that pretty much every punk band from the 70’s and early 80’s that has at least one original member or roadie still alive has reformed for a reunion show or tour. A few of those brave souls have even attempted to recapture their fire by going into he studio. Most of these releases have been embarrassing or boring with the exception of a few (hello, Buzzcocks!) Enter the Damned. Vanian and Sensible teamed up with long time associate and member Patricia Morrison (Sisters of Mercy, the Gun Club, and Vanian’s wife!) plus a couple of other guys to put out one of the best damn Damned records in their entire catalog. You read that correctly, it is that good. Grave Disorder spans the multiple personalities of the Damned from high speed and thrashable tracks like Democracy and Lookin for Action to the highly sculpted dark and drawling Thrill Kill and Absinthe, and even danceable tracks for the new wave-disco set like “W”. The irreverent humor, commentary, camp, energy and wit that the made Damned famous is all present and accounted for. It’s always fun to hear someone slag off John lennon as they do on “Would You Be so Hot if You Weren’t Dead?” (Live: Apparently, they have yet to burry the hatchet with the Clash, to which I say Vanian, don’t make me point out how much you might look like a Manners and Physique era Adam Ant….) Grave Disorder is a lush and vibrant triumph. Nothing in this recording sounds tired or half-hearted. The Damned are still putting on great live shows, after which you can still find the Captain in the merch booth talking with the fans or pogoing to other bands that they should be headlining for the Damned. Grave Disorder makes it an exciting time to be fan of punk rock and especially the Damned. Oh yeah, $15 post paid from Nitro records.

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