Cro-Mags - The Age of Quarrel [vinyl reissue] (Cover Artwork)


Cro-Mags: The Age of Quarrel [vinyl reissue]The Age of Quarrel [vinyl reissue] (2011)
Mightier Than Sword

Reviewer Rating: 4.5
User Rating:

Contributed by: JohnGentileJohnGentile
(others by this writer | submit your own)

Although it's inarguably one of the most influential hardcore albums of all time, Cro-Mags' debut masterpiece The Age of Quarrel has suffered from unauthorized re-releases, sketchy reissues, and lack of distribution from its very inception. In order to make the album more widely available and to era.
iTunes StoreAmazon

Although it's inarguably one of the most influential hardcore albums of all time, Cro-Mags' debut masterpiece The Age of Quarrel has suffered from unauthorized re-releases, sketchy reissues, and lack of distribution from its very inception. In order to make the album more widely available and to erase the errors made by unscrupulous procures that have plagued the album, Mightier Than Sword Records has released a version authorized by vocalist John Joseph that avoids the pitfalls of previous releases.

Previous versions of The Age of Quarrel seemed to be mastered from either a secondary source or were simply ported to CD in budget fashion, sapping some of the power from the album's iconic low-end rumble. This new vinyl version removes the layer of plastic that seemed to be melted on top of the sound of the previous CD versions, and features a crisper, punchier sound. Although the sound has been sharpened, Mightier Than Sword was smart enough to leave a classic alone, and there doesn't seem to be any after-the-fact post-production, leaving in place the grime that seeps between the album's monstrous licks, which helps it retain the brute mass for which made it so singular. Furthermore, because The Age of Quarrel wouldn't be The Age of Quarrel without John Joseph's unique rasp-growl, his vocals seem to be increased slightly, but as with the music, the execution is left raw, much to the album's benefit.

Additionally, the album tacks on three demo tracks from 1984, two of which are previously unreleased. While the demo tracks don't quite have the unique snap of the released versions, any new "old" Cro-Mags material is a blessing, and these tunes feature the band during their ascent in songwriting skill. It's a minor quibble, but the label should have featured the bonus tracks on a 7" instead of tacking them onto the back end of side B. The Age of Quarrel is very much an album-type album, with a definite beginning and end, as well as movements throughout the slab, so after the album proper finishes with "Signs of the Times", the sudden appearance of the bonus tracks somewhat rob the album of its iconic handbrake stop.

The record itself is pressed on heavy, 180-gram vinyl, giving the album the volume it deserves, and the jacket is thick stock, giving the album the proper gravitas. Interestingly, the inside sleeve features a previously unreleased photo of the band in presumably its earliest 1982 incarnation, which between the youth of the band members and their classic NYC hardcore pose, can really only be unfortunately described as...adorable.

This re-release doesn't redefine the album so much as spruce it up in its most presentable fashion. For those that don't already have this classic crushing slab, this is the version to get.


People who liked this also liked:
Minor Threat - Complete DiscographyAgainst Me! - is Reinventing Axl RoseThe Gaslight Anthem - The '59 SoundBad Brains - Bad BrainsCeremony - CoversArticles of Faith - New Normal Catastrophe [12-inch]Fucked Up - David Comes to LifeCeremony - Rohnert ParkOFF! - First Four EPs [box set]Dead to Me - African Elephants

Please login or register to post comments.What are the benefits of having a Punknews.org account?
  • Share your opinion by posting comments on the stories that interest you
  • Rate music and bands and help shape the weekly top ten
  • Let Punknews.org use your ratings to help you find bands and albums you might like
  • Customize features on the site to get the news the way you want.
Fine Print: The following comments are owned by whoever posted them. We are not respon sible for them in any way. Seriously.
fox82 (January 15, 2014)

Totally agree about how terrible it is to add bonus tracks at the end of the record, especially when the label has already gone through all the trouble and expenses.

slowstupidhungry (September 26, 2011)

Meh, I like it cos it sounds like Antidote mixed with Exciter's second album. To me, "Life of Dreams" has always held more appeal. More melody and songwriting skill.

hairysteve (September 26, 2011)

I wish I could give albums zero stars.

FLHC (September 26, 2011)

Half Heart is for pussies, but yes Ceremony is a wonderful band. Faster shit, check out Product of Waste or Iron Boots. Heavier shit, check out EXPIRE.

Turnstyles (September 24, 2011)


Ceremony is one of the best modern hardcore acts around. Violence, Violence and Rhonert Park are both absolutely amazing. Cruel Hand and Have Heart are both definantly worth checking out too.

theautumnpeople (September 23, 2011)

Nice Zach... I'll check it out when I get home. Any other suggestions from anyone else?

ZachLeg (September 23, 2011)

@ TheAutumnPeople

if you like fast, 80's inspired hardcore, download everything by my band for free - restlessnation.bandcamp.com

TheAutumnPeople (September 23, 2011)

I've been out of the loop for a while & I'm looking for some new, good hardcore bands to check out - stuff I can buy on iTunes. I love CBK, Envy, Verse, a little Terror & Death Before Dishonor; that type of stuff.

Any recommendations for some GREAT new HC?

ZachLeg (September 23, 2011)

hahahahaha that cover. i've never heard a pop-version of a cro-mags cover.

radtothemax (September 23, 2011)

How about a cover of Malfunction instead?


ZachLeg (September 23, 2011)

what half idiot said.

i hope i never hear another "hardtimes" cover but that probably wont happen.

half_Idiot (September 23, 2011)

Most overrated band in the history of hardcore.

Exclusive Streams


Newest Reviews

Punknews.org Team

Managing Editor

Adam White

Contributing Editors

Kira Wisniewski Brittany Strummer Armando Olivas John Flynn Chris Moran John Gentile Mark Little

Copy Editor

Adam Eisenberg Britt Reiser

Podcast Producer

Greg Simpson


Aubin Paul

ISSN 1710-5366

© Copyright 1999-2013 Punknews.org

Terms of Use Privacy Policy Contact Us About Punknews.org

Other Places to Go