Liverpool Sound and Vision Rating * * * *
Aggressive and punchy, it seems at times the young musicians and artists coming through today have forgotten just how important it is to pick a fight with authority and put their faces square up to flabby, sometimes spineless persona of those who would dictate their future to them. It doesn’t need to be physical, just edgy, exhilarating and showing just enough strength to show that you are not scared, everything is too safe across the board, we have all misplaced the anger because we are too comfortable to take on the Roach that is discrimination and injustice.
It is heartening to find a band willing to do it with all the composure and swagger of the another generation’s own fight against conformity and self-denial. In Aerial Salad’s debut album Roach, the anger of a generation is captured, it manifests itself like the Ghost of Christmas yet to come, haunting the present as if it the embodiment of all that is wrong, evil and that it needs to be punished, for now with a spoken outrage firmly delivered, the verbal warning in which notice is served. It begs the question just how long can the generations before go on taking them for granted, one hopes that the reckoning is close and enough to change the scrooge like atmosphere that has descended on this once forgivable land.
The Punk ethic, the Habits and Problems, the fury and the freedom to explore beyond a certain criteria, this is the beauty that was once exploding on the streets and for too long has either been left in the sepia tinged nostalgia, or hi-jacked by the impressive but hit making machine; it is a beauty found again, the remains of Pandora’s Box allowing Hope to come out from behind the soft shell of indifference and roar again.
In songs such as Habits And Problems, Conservative Thinking, 97, Worst Case Ontario and Alone Forever, the anger is ignited, the thought process calm, reassuring, passionate, volatile and one that dares look obedience in the eye and sees it blink first.
A remarkable debut, a memory regained on how Punk used to be, on how the genre was not afraid to believe that the way to destroy a near fascist state of mind was to fight it and prove how insane thinking it was.
Ian D. Hall