Off! | Off!

Vice (2012)
By REYAN ALI  |  May 1, 2012
2.5 2.5 Stars

The single coolest thing about OFF! being a supergroup of sorts is how they're nothing like a supergroup. The members of Circle Jerks, Burning Brides, Redd Kross, and Hot Snakes have no apparent ego clashes and zero desire to make music that sounds conventionally supergroup-like (i.e., epic or highfalutin'). On the contrary, OFF! function like a no-time-for-bullshit '80s hardcore punk band, careening between songs with a pinball's attention span (the longest of the 16 tracks here lasts a whopping minute and 36 seconds) and never coming up for air. Solos sizzle and snap like things built for speed, not endurance or showmanship, and the nostalgic appreciation for the genre is palpable and effective. As the only voice here, Keith Morris is just as impassioned as he was in Black Flag circa 1978, ranting with manic clarity about social anxiety and rebellion and destruction and being destroyed and all that good stuff. The only (and major) downside to the record is how it contains no standout tracks or surprising twists if you're already into Reagan-era hardcore. Urgency overwhelms inspiration, which makes for an unsatisfying meal. Experience OFF! like you're eating a snack, not dinner.
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