I'M LIKE STONE COLD STEVE AUSTIN; I PUT HOMOPHOBES IN COFFINS!
Joy as an Act of Resistance is the second album by the British rock band IDLES and was released on August 31st, 2018. The band started recording their new material in 2017, following the success of their debut album, Brutalism. Lead singer Joe Talbot said, "This album is an attempt to be vulnerable to our audience and encourage vulnerability, a brave naked smile in this shitty new world." Many of the lyrics tackle toxic masculinity, love, self-love, immigration, Brexit, and class. The song June even deals with the death of Joe Talbot's daughter, Agatha. NPR's Bob Boilen stated, "The stories on Joy as an Act to Resistance are taken from real life: a humane look at immigration through the singer's friend Danny Nedelko; the "importance of grieving parents right to call themselves mothers and fathers." Finally, he stated, "Joy as an Act to Resistance is a thoughtful attempt at loving one's self while also understanding the importance of community and trust."
I am known not to be the biggest fan of punk records, especially early ones; however, this is a relatively new punk record. Many punk records I have listened to have a low score, especially those on the 1001 albums before you die. This record follows the same exception. However, it still is one of the better punk records I have listened to. The singer sounds like Nick Cave quit making art rock and started making punk rock. The vocals are one of the more enjoyable punk vocals I have heard, unlike something like Sid Vicious' annoying ass vocals. This album also hits extremely hard, with some booming and gritty instrumentation on almost every single track. The album is also consistent and is never ending in its brutal nature, and I respect that to an extent. This gets stale after a while because of that exact fact; it all sounds the same in my eyes, which isn't necessarily a bad thing. Still, I like having a lot of diversity in an album. Lyrically, this album is pretty goofy (TEN POINTS TO GRYFFINDOR, TEN POINTS TO GRYFFINDOR!), but also wrapped in heavy-hitting themes that were previously mentioned above. The band tries to make the listener know their views on it, which is also cool.
Just like their debut album, Joy as an Act of Resistance was a critical success, appearing on many critics' lists for the best albums released in 2018 and even one of the best albums released in the 2010s. The album also went Silver in the United Kingdom. It charted exceptionally well in the United Kingdom and the United States Independent Albums chart. This record is just another one of those punk records that does its thing and makes the substances packed inside of it evident to the listener through some brutal vocals and instrumentation. It is just a solid record.
~ Never Fight a Man with a Perm
~ Danny Nedelko