The Side Effects of Thinking
I’ve always respected Moral Crux for their political opinions as much as their music. They have a way of singing songs like “Assassination Politics” the same way other bands sing songs about their new girlfriends. It’s a weird juxtaposition, but it’s always worked for me. The Side Effects of Thinking was recorded in 1988 and early 1989. I’m not sure if it’s a re-issue of their first album or a first-time release of their early songs; either way, it’s rife with ’80s earmarks. The lyrics are every bit as good as later Moral Crux albums, but they hadn’t really nailed down their sound at this point. They fluctuate between a Youth Brigade/Adolescents influence and tinges of ’80s Brit-pop. Sometimes, it works well. Other times, I’m cringing, but as a fan of this band, I like this album. It has a way of reminding me of a time and a place long gone, even though I didn’t have this in that long gone time and place, so it’s like a cool old album in that way. If I’d found this on vinyl at a thrift store, I’d bore my friends with the story for years. As a new release, though, it’s just not quite as cool. I don’t understand it. Maybe I’m a music snob.
Panic Button, P.O. Box 148010, Chicago, IL 60614-8010; http://www.panicbuttonrecords.com