Closet Monster - We Rebuilt This City (Cover Artwork)

Closet Monster

We Rebuilt This City (2004)

Underground Operations

Closet Monster is a politically-charged punk rock band out of the Toronto area. Their lyrics can be compared to the likes of Anti-Flag, Propagandhi, and Strike Anywhere, although their latest release gives you something a little different. The lyrics are much more blunt than any I have heard from a political punk band, and it makes for an enjoyable and somewhat empowering listen.

We Rebuilt This City is 7 songs of pure punk rock agression. It can be best described as straightforward punk rock with a lot of gang vocals, thick dual guitars, and some truly amazing bass lines. The vocals are incredibly passionate and manage to hammer home the lyrics with authority. Even on the lone acoustic song on the album, "The Empire Strikes Iraq: A Sad Day For Sovereignty," you can't help but be inspired by the passion the band puts forward. Lines like "I wish all the dead children could be delivered and buried on the White House lawn" describe how relentlessly blunt the lyrics are.

One of the things most interesting about the band is that they give you feelings of rebellion, dissent, and anger while managing to maintain a sense of optimism and unity. In the song "Summer Of '97," the feeling of unity is evident; "All we were searching for was someone or something to believe in. That's why we got each other. 'Cause when they knock one of us down we'll come together underground, and try to conquer the world." Each one of those words sounds like it is being ripped from the lead singer's throat, making for a sense of desperation.

If you like political music of any kind, you will like this release. If you like punk rock that has an uncanny ability to write lyrics that coincide perfectly with the music, you will like this album. I rated it a 7 because there are only 7 songs that clock in at just under 20 minutes. Watch out for this band in the not-so-distant future and be sure to check out their label Underground Operations for some more excellent bands.

I believe if there is any hope for our future, it lies in our struggle."