24 of 24 people found the following review helpful
why is this so underated?,
This review is from: Combat Rock (Audio CD)
The final official Clash album was their most commercially successful, yet in terms of praise it has little. I think that to understand `Combat Rock' you have to first have been able to appreciate `Sandinista!' While less ambitious than the former album, `Combat Rock' covers styles and ideas pursued through all the bands albums.
`Combat Rock' features those two big hits, `Should I Stay Or Should I Go' and 'Rock The Casbah', while the remainder is often dismissed as disappointing. This disparity is very rewarding through further listening. `Sean Flynn', `Ghetto Defendant', `Red Angel Dragnet' are odd the first time round, and but more idiosyncratic and engaging with each further listen. The album musically embodies the bands strains and problems. The stripped sound production is obviously a result of its recording on the road. Another distancing feature of the album is the generally negative and down-tempo feel. This is in strong contrast to their earlier rebellious and up-tempo aggression on the debut and `Give `em Enough Rope' albums. Apart from the two energising hit singles the material sinks in differently. This makes for a totally new kind of Clash album. `Combat Rock' is the next step from `Sandinista!' yet it has a stronger set of pop tunes and hooks closer to `London Calling'.
All in all the greatest virtue of the set is 'Straight To Hell'. It is possibly the most beautiful and sorrowful song they ever wrote. It's inclusion half way through the running order can upset the mix, especially so since the listener is propelled into 'Overpowered by Funk'. `Combat Rock' is definitely an album for an open mind and is a great last hurrah for Mick and Topper. While it may be the groups most overlooked album, it is still as much a complement since the bands standard was so high.
(As a side note it is worth noting that it's so unjust that 'Know Your Rights' is always left off of other Clash compilations. I love it)
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Initial post: 12 Oct 2016, 16:27:59 BST
and the scream do a great cover of KYR too. good review. vastly underrated album and thoroughly enjoyable and diverse throughout. can't deal with the fact it has some 'hits'? stop stroking your chin, following muso lists and shut the yap. my first LP (on tape with a Walkman) aged 9. probably made me the c*nt I am. much thanks
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