Monday, March 01, 2010

Quarter Century Review: All Rise

Naked Raygun
All Rise
Produced by Iain Burgess

This album's release date is unknown other than the year. This is was kind of the beginning of the end of the unquestioned excellence of Naked Raygun. Their apex reached with their 1984 sophomore effort, Throb Throb, Jeff Pezzati and company saw their power being to wane with this album.

That being said, it just means that they were a mortal band after all. Few punk bands could match the fury of, and undying loyalty to, Naked Raygun in the mid-eighties. Every show was a sing-along. It speaks to their songcrafting and overall appeal. They didn't have the most fans but they inspired the best of the ones they had. The classic lineup combination of Pezzati's powerful vocals and John Haggerty's guitars are on great display here. There was no true classic lineup of Naked Raygun but their heyday is clearly the combination of Pezzati and Haggerty. The recently deceased Burgess was a huge influence on the Chicago post punk scene of the mid-eighties, helping create the buzzsaw guitar sound used by Raygun and Big Black. While not their greatest overall collection of songs, there are still at least three real punk anthems ("Home Of The Brave", "Knock Me Down", "I Remember") as highlights. And there are far more great tracks than mediocre ones. And you can find few better ways to end an album than the Santiago Durango-penned "New Dreams,".

Overall Grade=8.31

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