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Agnostic Front | Dead Yuppies | review | hardcore | punk | Lollipop

Agnostic Front

Dead Yuppies (Epitaph)
by Morgan Coe

As the press release helpfully points out: "Jail terms have been served. Divorces have been filed. Close friends have died of natural causes. Some have been murdered." Most importantly, "backs are still being stabbed." Through it all, Agnostic Front have survived to take another round of potshots at the usual straw men: "Critic" kicks my record-reviewing ass with the power of a burlier Minor Threat; "Uncle Sam" takes on The Man with a baffling chorus of "What do I get for my taxes? Social security! You'll never control me!"; "Politician" pummels Him with another round of clunky breakdowns; "Pedophile" takes a brave stand against child molesters* that makes me long for the subtlety of the Dwarves' "Thank Heaven for Little Girls"; and finally "Dead Yuppies" updates Suicidal Tendencies' classic "I Saw Your Mommy" for the new millennium.

But who listens to Agnostic Front for the lyrics? The music hasn't really changed that much: Fast, pissed off hardcore by tough guys who aren't interested in trying anything fancy. The guitars are smoother and "bigger" sounding than they used to be, and Roger Miret's vocals are a little less intense, but the problem isn't that AF have changed... it's that they haven't changed. Victim In Pain was very terrifying in 1984, but in 2002, Dead Yuppies lacks the energy of Demon System 13, the insanity of Guyana Punchline, the heaviness of His Hero Is Gone, the evil of From Ashes Rise, or the power of Tragedy - to name just a few ripping hardcore bands that have come up since NYHC's heyday. If you're interested in music to rage and riot by, you'd be better off checking out any of them. If you want to hear the roots of aggressive hardcore, start with United Blood and Victim In Pain. If, on the other hand, you're an AF completist with three live bootlegs of "The Eliminator," you know what to do...
(2798 Sunset Blvd. Lost Angeles, CA 90026)

*hint: They're against 'em.

 


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