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CHRON GEN – ‘This is the Age’ Review

CHRON GEN – This is the Age

chron-genHot on the heels of the first Anti-Pasti release in decades comes the first studio album in 32 years from fellow Apocalypse Now band, Chron Gen. Back in those days, Chron Gen were a little bit different than other UK82 bands such as Discharge and The Exploited as they were more melodic and accessible. The new album continues that early legacy of melody and pop/rock infused tunes and it’s a cracking listen. Opening with the superb Jump with it’s Leonard Cohen style vocals over a super riff with lyrics suggesting people can bugger off if they don’t like ‘it’ – The track experiments with bass driven verses, super guitar solos and even includes a reference to the Clash’s Tommy Gun…it would not be out of place in the pop/punk files with Green Day.

Next up is Love This City and the dynamic changes. It was listening to this track that I had an immediate and visceral reaction – the Chron Gen 2016 version remind me of Generation X and their eponymous debut album. The vocals sound like an early Billy Idol and the tunes cross over into rock, punk, pop and rockabilly…it’s a great combination.

Chron Gen recently completed a sell-out tour of the Western USA and these songs will stand up well in a live environment. Maybe Baby continues the theme of powerful, approachable rock and roll with an edge. I’m not sure where Chron Gen would have evolved through the 1990’s but they have certainly evolved into a new 2016 model displaying some excellent songwriting.

There are a number of standout tracks on the album aside from those already mentioned. I Wanna be the Guy is propelled by a fast drumbeat and deep bass and launches into a strong chorus before throttling back the guitar for the verses. My Pumpkin completely changes the pace with a reggae infused approach whilst You Took Your Time enters with an acoustic guitar before a superb guitar solo takes the song forward in a Bruce Springsteen style anthem.

Kiss The Girls returns to the acoustic guitar and the reggae beat and it’s an effective track that stands out for me as one of the best on the album. The second to last track, Who’s Gonna Love Me channels Primal Scream at their rock n’ roll best – it’s a dive bar, pool hall classic. The band ends the album with I Don’t Care – a song that begins with some vocal harmonies and evolves into a great chorus interspersed with softer verses.

I have to admit that I would not have expected this album from Chron Gen (who I last saw on the aforementioned Apocalypse Now tour) – it’s well written, superbly produced and played. They’ve released a great album!

Get it here: http://www.plastichead.com/catalogue.asp


Track Listing

  1. Jump
  2. Love This City
  3. Maybe Baby
  4. Ready to Overreact
  5. Imagination
  6. I Wanna be the Guy
  7. My Pumpkin
  8. Dangerous Game
  9. You Took Your Time
  10. Kiss the Girls
  11. Who’s Gonna love Me
  12. I Don’t Care


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