Discipline (Netherlands) Downfall of the Working Man CD

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Discipline (Netherlands) Downfall of the Working Man CD. Dutch street punk bands seem to exist in some kind of time warp, where the Angelic Upstarts and Sham 69 are the be-all and end-all of punk rock, and the ideals of hoarse, yobbish vocals and riff-driven, rhythmic songs have not yet curdled into the tuneless bark and mindless unison riffing of late-era hardcore. Melody still means something to bands like Discipline, up there with thoughtful, socially-oriented lyrics and singalong choruses. All of the above are present and accounted for on Downfall of the Working Man, Discipline's ninth full-length album in the last 13 years. Tough but properly sensitive and realistic when necessary, and filled with a bit more humor than one tends to expect from street punk acts -- the album even contains a readymade football anthem for their favorite Dutch League team, "Red and White Army" -- Joost DeGraaf's lyrics are a good match for his amiable but lived-in voice, which is hardly a thing of beauty but somehow just right for the '70s punk mid-tempo attack of the band. Highlights include the title track and a terrific and unexpected cover of Slade's wideboy anti-violence classic "When I'm Dancin' I Ain't Fightin'." ~ Stewart Mason


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