English anarcho-punk band Subhumans return this year with Crisis Point, their first full-length album in over a decade. Based solely on the political climate in England, the U.S. and many other parts of the world, the timing couldn’t be better for songs like “Terrorist in Waiting,” “Strange Land” and “Thought is Free.”
The album sticks to that chugging classic punk sound that Subhumans helped popularize in 1980, with choruses made for a shout-a-long at the pub and anti-establishment and anti-capitalist lyrics championing working-class struggles and environmentalism.
“Coffee romance in the adverts love drug revival / Far-away the migrants sweat for their survival / Here’s the latest cola burger infatuation / Fed on chemistry and death — deforestation,” Subhumans’ singer Dick Lucas snarls on the track “Information Gap.”
When Lucas first heard punk music as a teenager, what he liked most was that it felt like music anyone could make. “Punk shook up the cozy complacency of the music industry and united a generation of alienated teenagers by making music and lyrics that felt realistic, angry and free,” Lucas tells me via email from the UK.
Is an old punk rocker like Lucas optimistic about the future?
“I’d like to be optimistic,” he responds. “Let’s give it a try. More people than ever are aware of and protesting against environmental destruction, racist immigration laws, sexual discrimination, the erosion of workers’ rights, land rights, animal rights — and the more people, the better.”
“It brings these problems to life for the numbed-out masses semi-blissfully unaware, slumped in front of the mainstreamed mindwash, trying to reduce that nagging feeling that everything’s a bit fucked,” he says.
Subhumans play with Neighbor Hood Brats and Bad Breeding 6 pm Friday, Nov. 1, at Whirled Pies; $15 advance, $18 door, all-ages.