New Criticals

Whereas on earlier albums they sounded like an ESL Sick of it All, on The Shape of Punk to Come, they sounded like virtuosos coping with the banality of genre convention through inspired re-invention. With nuanced production, it sounded as good as a punk album could sound. Equal praise is due to the duo Eskil Lovstrom and Pelle Henricsson, the production auteurs who provided the atmosphere for the group to go as far as they did musically and the sonic palette to make the songs sound as sharp as possible.

From the relentless explosive guitars of “The Deadly Rhythm” to the drum n' bass breakdown of "Faculties of the Skull/Worms of the Senses" to the somber post rock meets hardcore of “Tannhäuser/Derivè”, it was an album that was fearless in its execution.

Even in spite of its goofily arrogant conceit/presumption of the direction punk should take, The Shape of Punk to Come raised the stakes and arguably has yet to be topped in its genre - both sonically and ideologically. With lyrical content like “I got a bone to pick with capitalism, and a few to break” (“Worms of the Senses”), “I breathe in, I create, awoke the spirit of ‘68” (“Protest Song ’68”), and “We need new noise, real art for the real people” (“New Noise”), they had enough Situationist-inspired politics to back up the confrontational nature of the music.