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Crass - Christ: The Album (Cover Artwork)

Crass

Crass: Christ: The AlbumChrist: The Album (1982)
Crass

Reviewer Rating: 3
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Contributed by: tittytwisterbudytittytwisterbudy
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Usually when a reputable band takes over a year to record, produce and mix an album, the outcome is expected to be spectacular (i.e. for a more modern example, Streetlight Manifesto's Everything Went Numb). However, with Crass' fourth studio release, Christ: The Album, the ticket fell far from short.
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Usually when a reputable band takes over a year to record, produce and mix an album, the outcome is expected to be spectacular (i.e. for a more modern example, Streetlight Manifesto's Everything Went Numb). However, with Crass' fourth studio release, Christ: The Album, the ticket fell far from short.

During the year they took to make the album, the Falklands War had come and gone, causing the band members to stop and take a look at themselves and what they were doing. A band whose purpose for existence was to annotate and criticize political issues and politicians and promote peace and anarchy, had completely neglected a war being fought by their country on their, at the time, current recording. By their own standards, they had not done well.

As for the album itself, it also lacked the Crass sound and ability that fans had grown accustomed to and expected from the band. Even with this let-down however, there are still plenty of high points showcasing Crass' ability to shine in dark situations. "Have a Nice Day" and "It's the Greatest Working Class Rip-Off" instantly became fan favorites and are worthy of anyone's 'Crass Playlist.' "Who Can Be Who?," "Buy Now Pay as You Go" and "Rival Tribal Revel Rebel, Pt. 2" are all songs that truly draw on their roots of The Feeding of the 5000 and Stations of the Crass with fast raunchy vocals from Steve Ignorant (who returns after his absence from their previous release Penis Envy) and Pete Wright (appearing here as Sybil Right), as well as the wonderfully ironic military percussion stylings of Penny Rimbaud (appearing as Elvis Rimbaud). Speaking of Penny, the original vinyl release includes a book, A Series of Shock Slogans and Mindless Token Tantrums, in which an essay by Rimbaud was featured: "The Last of the Hippies," which told the eerie story of Wally Hope's suspicious death.

The album came out as a double-disc release, the first obviously being Christ: The Album and the second, a live recording from a June 1981 gig at the 100 Club in London along with snippets and fragments provided by the ever-present Gee Vaucher (appearing on the album as G. Sus), who also included in the original release a poster portraying her depiction and critique of society and sexism that you truly have to see to understand.

Despite mixed reviews from fans, the album still reached #1 on the UK Indie charts in 1982, and remained there for quite some time. Funny innit? A band who reaches #1 on the charts is disappointed and feels that they had failed -- just another example of why Crass is one of the greatest, if not the greatest, punk group to ever grace this planet they worked so hard to save and educate.

 

 
People who liked this also liked:
Crass - Yes Sir, I WillCrass - Stations of the CrassCrass - The Feeding of the 5000Jawbreaker - 24 Hour Revenge TherapyJawbreaker - Dear YouLeatherface - MushDillinger Four - Versus GodWu-Tang Clan - Enter the Wu-Tang (36 Chambers)Tragedy - TragedyPig Destroyer - Terrifyer

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Fine Print: The following comments are owned by whoever posted them. We are not respon sible for them in any way. Seriously.
Anonymous (April 8, 2007)

Crass were a bunch of old hippies, their music is absolute crap and their pretentious i-know-it-better lyrics are even worse. Fuck this band, fuck anarcho-punk.

Holy_Balls (April 3, 2007)

I only heard of this band because of Geoff Rickly. I heard he has the same beliefs.

Anonymous (April 2, 2007)

This isn't supposed to be a catchy rock album. Get the double LP with the fantastic insert (the CD has a miniature version as well, which you fail to mention) and it's quite obvious that this is a mixed-media sort of art piece. Score's for the reviewer's understanding of the material.

Anonymous (April 2, 2007)

"As for the album itself, it also lacked the Crass sound and ability that fans had grown accustomed to and expected from the band"
i thought the who reason for punk was to create something original and fresh, not stale and reproduced

Anonymous (April 1, 2007)

god is dead

Anonymous (April 1, 2007)

Here's a picture of Geoff Rickley wearing a Crass shirt, somebody who doesn't "get" Crass.....

http://www.initforthemoney.net/zine/interviews/imag es/thurs.jpg

Anonymous (April 1, 2007)

Mentioning unimportant overblown bullshit like Streelight Manifesto in the same review as Crass? Hmmm not sure about that one.

GlassPipeMurder (March 31, 2007)

This was my first Crass album and I found it quite enjoyable once I figured out the concept and paid attention to the lyrics. I think this has some really good songs like "Major General Despair", "I Know There is Love" and "Deadhead" among others. Also, the live half, "Well Forked", has a lot of good songs too.

FuckYouOiOiOi (March 31, 2007)

people actually own this album? I own the two best crass records on vinyl (stations (original pressing!) and feeding) and have others downloaded.

Anonymous (March 30, 2007)

video_cognito- yep youre pretty ignorant

video_cognito (March 30, 2007)

I may just be ignorant, but I didn't know you could promote peace AND anarchy.

theyounginfluential (March 30, 2007)

as of now,this is my favorite Crass record.
but yeah, don't start off with it
i did, and i hated it.

tittytwisterbudy (March 30, 2007)

to anyone who's interested in anarcho punk of the late 70's and early 80's a great book for you to get is 'The Day The Country Died' by Ian Glasper. Everything you need to know about the beginnings of the genre is in there and any fan of this music will definitely love this book.

Anonymous (March 30, 2007)

What a poorly-written review. "The ticket fell far from short"??? What the fuck?

Personally, least favorite Crass album (excepting "Ten Notes"). And, now, least favorite Crass review.

Anonymous (March 30, 2007)

Can anyone point me to some good HC/punk/crust record stores in Boston? I'll be in the area, and want to waste some $. I did a quick search and came up w/ ReGeneration records... Thanks
-feeeding5000

Anonymous (March 30, 2007)

This is really not the best Crass album to start with, unless you have an open mind. Personally, I think that their earlier work is easier to swallow, and is a little less dogmatic and a lot less jaded than this album. Oh, the CD reissue is 2 discs, but it was a double LP. I think that if someone is new to Crass, they should get the albums in order of their release - it makes it easier to take the stylistic leap from record to record. People who get "Yes Sir" or "Penis Envy" first might be kinda weirded out, and not check out a great band w/an important message. For the less musically adventurous, Conflict's "Increase the Pressure" is my personal favorite. If you like Crass, you'll also probably like any of the old ANOK bands(RP, Flux, etc.). As for the modern Anarcho bands that sound like Discharge, etc....Discharge didn't really roll w/ Crass, even if they shared similar beliefs. However, all of Discharge's pre-metal/pre-reunion albums ("Why", "Hear Nothing...", "Never Again") are a more hardcore, less eloquent version of the same stuff. For a happy medium between the 2 sounds, try Antisect. Oh, and 2nd post was me.
-feeeding5000

Anonymous (March 30, 2007)

but this is not a crass song!

Anonymous (March 30, 2007)

greatest working class rip off is one of my favorite crass songs

Anonymous (March 30, 2007)

Wow, really? 3 stars? I really thought that this was the album that opened my mind towards Crass and really pushed me into loving them as a band, not just as "great lyricists." "Beg Your Pardon" from disc 1 is evidence enough. I can listen to this one from front to back, both discs easily. The earlier ones were more direct, sure, but this one has a pleasurable quality to it like Rudimentary Peni's "Cacophony," or something like that. Like Crass's "Feeding" or "Stations", Peni's "Ep's of RP' is immediately accessible, but their later work is much more interesting and challenging musically.

But, everyone has his own opinion. The guy who reviewed "Yes Sir, I Will" and whoever reviews "10 Notes on a Summer's Day" might have a gripe in my eyes about how weird and truly challenging Crass could be.

Good review, though. I guess I am thinking that a band like Crass--a truly amazing and somehow underappreciated foundational anarchist punk band-- should be immortalized on a site like this. But alas, I know they are not the easiest group to swallow.

strangenotes (March 30, 2007)

Double disc? You mean 2xLP? Because compact discs were much too expensive at the time for this to be released on that format....

Anyways, I have this, but I don't remember most of the song. The lyrics are still great, though, and I should give it another chance. Also, the band failed to pay attention to the Falkland Wars? It was a major discussion point for a huge amount of UK anarcho bands at the time....

MikeStupid (March 30, 2007)

Fucking great lyrics, but I just can't get into the music.

Anonymous (March 30, 2007)

Not a great album - most of the songs are long and repetitive, and lack the energy of their older stuff. Most of the really good songs were released in better single versions. While I think that every Crass album has its place, this one is less essential. The samples that begin each song are cool, but far too quiet. "Well-Forked but not Dead", the live disc, is better than the live disc in "Stations", but Crass live is not nearly cool as Crass on record.

GlassPipeMurder (March 30, 2007)

this album is soo good and gives you the most fucked up dreams imagineable if you let it play while you're sleeping.

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