Here’s a reprint of my review of the new Paranoid Visions record that ran in Hot Press a few issues ago.
Escape From The Austerity Complex (Overground Records)
Three and a half stars
Key Track: ‘Poles Apart’
DUBLIN PUNKS STILL KICKING AGAINST THE PRICKS
Despite what some critics and self-appointed social commentators may try and tell you-punk rock isn’t, and never has been, a sub culture solely for those of a youthful (usually teenage) disposition. It’s a movement dominated by people with probing minds, a penchant for pissing off the moral majority and a mutual passion for barbed riffs and ballsy choruses. Don’t believe me? Just look at Bad Religion and Siouxsie Sioux for proof that there are plenty of artists who still “mean it, maaaannnn,” well into their middle age. And the names don’t stop there of course. Infamous, iconic Dublin band Paranoid Visions are another act who have loyally stuck by their principles over the years and their latest effort Escape From The Austerity Complex is as fiery and frenetic as anything they’ve released in their career to date, which began back in the early 80s for those keeping score.
Opening with the jarring, stomping, string-infused ‘Austerity Crusade,’ lines like “What have they done to our language?/The tongue of the devil we speak” are particularly relevant in an era of TXT SPK and wide-spread American-isms and it sets us up nicely for the mayhem to come. Highlights include the blood-thirsty ‘Outsider Artist’ (featuring TV Smith from the Adverts) and the riotous ‘Split Personality’ (with has vocals from Crass legend Steve Ignorant) but it’s the moody, bass-y rumble of ‘Poles Apart’ which really impresses thanks to a menacing, Banshees-esque arrangement and gothic vocals from Deka Coppa, Famine RelAoife and K SarahSarah. Fans of the first, second and indeed third wave of punk rock should check this out.