The Living End - The Living End (Cover Artwork)

The Living End

The Living End (1998)

EMI / Modular

The Living End are easily one of Australia's greatest punk bands ever. However, they aren't too big in the U.S.A. Sure, they have a few songs hit the radio every once in a while and maybe a commerical or two (that's where I first heard of them), but overall, they are fairly unkown. I feel sorry for those who haven't experienced them yet.

They have a new album hitting early 2006, but if you haven't heard them yet, you definitely need to check out their first, self-titled full-length, which is easily one of the best albums ever.

The Living End are a three-piece with Chris being simply amazing on the guitar, Scotty playing (and doing cool tricks) on his standup bass, and Trav hitting the drums. While they have the standup bass, they shouldn't be classified as psychobilly, but they do have plenty of influnce from that genre as well as touches of ska mixed in with a bit of old Ramones-ish pop-punk.

The album starts out with their classic single "Prisoner of Society," which can pretty much be a theme song for anyone. It's a great start to such a classic album, and then they never let down with the remaining thirteen tracks.

The thing I like most about the Living End is their upbeat, happy aproach to their music. They sound happy even when singing about serious subjects, like "Monday," which is about a school shooting and is probably the best song on the album.

But the Living End do take their music really seriously. As I mentioned, Chris is just amazing on his guitar and it really shows during his various ripping solos. The opening to "All Torn Down" may be one of music's greatest moments.

I've heard people compare these guys to Green Day, Rancid, U2, and the Clash. I really don't like any of those bands, but the Living End is my favorite band, so go figure. I know taste in music is very selective, but trust me on this: The Living End are one of the best groups out there. Go pick up this CD. It's their best, but their others are great too. And if you like them, go to their site and tell them how much you do. They kick major ass live, so hopefully, we can get them to come over here again.