Discharge - Why (Cover Artwork)
Staff Pick


Why (1981)


Rarely in history has a band had more of an impact on two different music scenes than Discharge had. Discharge, easily the most talented and aggressive hardcore band to come out of the UK, created what they self-described as "noise not music." In a sense, they were right, but this noise IS music. By blending vicious hardcore with some heavier playing they managed to greatly influence both punk and metal bands for years to come. Many huge names in metal have named Discharge as an influence (Metallica, Slayer), as have some well-known punk bands (Nausea, DRI, Varukers).

Discharge had a long and varied career, which has seen its fair share of highs and lows, but in my opinion, Why is their true masterpiece. Hear Nothing, See Nothing, Say Nothing may have been more popular and amazing in its own right, but nothing can match the pure raw visceral punch of this record. The guitar sound defines the description "buzzsaw" or fuzz and the vocals are some of the most unrestrained and angry in hardcore. The raw power this album delivers will definitely appeal to fans of Black Flag's Damaged or DRI's Dirty Rotten LP.

Many of Discharge's undisputed classics appear on this album: "Decontrol," "It's No TV Sketch," "Ain't No Feeble Bastard," "A Look At Tomorrow," "Tomorrow Belongs To Us" and, of course, "Why," among others. This is an essential purchase for fans of hardcore; it is on par with Minor Threat's Complete Discography and Bad Brains' S/T and, in all honesty, it makes today's hardcore bands weep.