Saturday, 22 August 2009

Nomeansno - Wrong (1989)

Jazz-inspired, post-hardcore group (sometimes given a little subgenre of it's own called jazzcore) from that finest of musical cities Vancouver, with arguably their finest LP. Very much like a heavier Minutemen. Hell, Rob Wright is a dead ringer for Ed Boon at times.
For those who's lives aren't bogged down in musical genre designations, by post-hardcore I mean groups that came in the wake of the early 80's American hardcore (see: faster/louder) punk movement. These were typically alumni of the hardcore scene who took what they learned and diversified their music - fusing with other genres they admired or just broadening the remit of punk with unusual tempos, more chords and an indefinable maturation that necessitates the use of portentous phrases like 'post-whatever'. 'Post-hardcore' often overlaps with the old 'post-punk' category, but is more true to it's noisy punk roots, often with a heavy metal edge.

So what could anybody have possibly learned from hardcore punk? Plenty: how to set up independent labels and become your own media machine, how an increasingly homogenous scene dominated by narrow-minded wannabe radicals is as good as a bullet in the head for music and progress, how to make a purposeful racket, and even some musical chops.

Nomeansno might share something in common with the free jazz-like meanderings of Minutemen but at this point I think we could safely agree with wikipedia that 'Wrong' falls into the category of so-called math rock, that calculated chaos. It's music rooted in the geometric discipline of Wire and Devo and the like. Musical intricacy, polyrhythms and time changes galore - all delivered with the fire of punk and lacking the plodding track-lengths of progressive rock. The lyrics are always interesting too, not being preoccupied with the abstractions of many a contemporary experimental band.

If you have the money and this becomes a fixture, buy it! This is NOT a major label group; greed is killing thousands and holding back the psychic evolution of the human race, don't add to it

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