Closet Monster - Killed The Radio Star (Cover Artwork)
Staff Review

Closet Monster

Killed The Radio Star (2002)

Underground Operations

Closet Monster is a fun, passionate young band out of Ajax Ontario that should turn a few heads with their new full length "Killed The Radio Star." To me, the band somewhat represents the generation where the influence of contemporary acts like Dillinger Four and Anti-Flag is really starting to show. Furthermore this whole album, right down to the artwork and liner notes, simply screams effort. The band put a lot into this release.

Closet Monster employs dual vocalists, one in the pop-punk range and one far more in the post-hardcore vein. They play busy, frantic punk with plenty of pop structure but just enough grit to keep it grounded. It's a style that's similar to Dillinger Four in a lot of ways.

The band rips through a dozen tracks of highly politicized punk that lyrically wouldn't seem out of place on a Propagandhi or Anti-Flag record. To their credit, and the ultimate benefit of the album, they inject a good amount of sarcasm and wit into all the rhetoric on here. "Rhetoric" may be a good choice of words too: even though I agree with a lot of the band's politics, they lack anything close to subtly. That's where Closet Monster parts ways with ideologically similar bands like the Clash or Dillinger Four, both were/are politically active in their lyrics but didn't have to hit you over the head with it.

The best tracks on the album feature frenzied interchanges between the two vocalists and playful-yet-political lyricism. "Sexism Is Real: Wrestling Is Not" and "Corporate Media Death Squad" are both catchy tracks that show off these qualities. The single "Mr. Holland Vs. Acceptable Behaviour" is a riotous blast of 80s-style skate punk. Not everything the band tries is as effective as it should be, but when they reach the right balance between all their influences it works very well.