Way back in high school someone gave me a cassette tape of Bad Religion’s album All Ages. As cliche as it might sound, that tape changed my life more than any other music ever had then or ever would again.
The ferociously fast guitar melodies, the smart lyrics, the barbershop quartet backup vocals. It was so unlike anything else I had heard and I loved it. Obsessively.
Their golden run of Suffer (1988), No Control (1989), Against The Grain (1990) and Generator (1992) is peerless, in my opinion.
Then, after a string of pretty boring major-label albums in the late 90’s, they reinvented themselves in 2002 with The Process Of Belief. One big part of that reinvention was the addition of drummer Brooks Wackerman (what a perfect name for a drummer!) arguably the first time the band had ever had a good drummer. Another big part was the return of founding co-songwriter Brett Gurewitz, who had left to focus on his record label Epitaph Records while Bad Religion flirted with Sony. The Process Of Belief was fresh and really exciting - was Bad Religion back on top form?
Unfortunately, after Process, came another string of mediocre albums. Despite Gurewitz and Graffin being back writing songs together again and Wackerman’s continued presence in the band, Bad Religion fired out three albums that were fine. Not bad. Not Great. Just.. you know… fine. Nothing anyone got excited about. Nothing as bad as their Sony streak, but certainly nothing coming close to their golden streak, either.
Enter 2013’s True North, one of the best Bad Religion albums, period. I’m not sure why it’s come here and now, but I’m damn thankful it’s here. A lot of the songs on True North would have been right at home on Suffer or No Control. They’re short, stripped back and fast as hell. I really can’t stress how taken aback I am by how awesome this record is.
These guys are all over 50 now! I hope I have that much energy in 20 years!
If this isn’t my album of 2013 then holy crap, it’s going to be a good year for music. Play this record to anyone who tries to tell you that punk rock isn’t relevant in 2013!
Boy, this has been a loooong time in the making, but I’m so proud of the finished product!
Inspired by the fine art of Julie Mehretu this music video was a collaboration with Wellington motion-graphics artist Lucas Brooking. Lucas is an amazing designer and we were absolutely over-the-moon to work with him. Check out more of his work here lucasbrooking.co.nz
Directed by Alastair Tye Samson & Lucas Brooking
Produced by Alastair Tye Samson & Alex Bird
Motion Graphics by Lucas Brooking
Photography by Alastair Tye Samson
Edited by Doug Dillaman
Additional Motion Graphics by Carlos Purcell & Richard Borg
Associate Producer Ellie Callahan
Pretty Much is from the older Gatherer album This City Sunrise available now at iTunes & various digital retailers itunes.apple.com/nz/album/this-city-sunrise/id377162458
Check out Gatherer online…
This. On repeat. Can’t wait for my pre-order to arrive!
Protestors march against the shutdown of New Zealand’s public service television station TVNZ7 after a petition to save the station with more than 36,000 signatures was ignored.
Adam Baines shooting skateboarders at Britomart, Central Auckland while waiting for the Save TVNZ7 protest march to begin.