Formed by New York punk child prodigy Harley Flanagan and guitarist Parris Mayhew, the Cro-Mags helped define the East Coast hardcore movement with their now legendary debut, Age of Quarrel. Originally released on Profile Records, the 15-track collection was later combined with the band's 1989 follow-up, Best Wishes, as a single 22-song package. Joining Flanagan (bass) and Mayhew (guitars) on Age of Quarrel are vocalist John "Bloodclot" Joseph, drummer Mackie Jayson, and co-guitarist Doug Holland. Together, these musicians are considered the quintessential Cro-Mags lineup and this is their only recording together. Near record-setting member changes plagued the band and the considerable momentum created by this debut was never capitalized on. Age of Quarrel is loaded with hardcore classics like "World Peace," "We Gotta Know," and "Street Justice." On these cuts and throughout the record, Mayhew presents what were at the time cutting-edge post-Motörhead punk/metal riffs, and the entire group execute their roles with passion, dexterity, and extreme focus. It's practically impossible to understand or appreciate New York hardcore without first spending time listening to Age of Quarrel.
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AllMusic Review by Vincent Jeffries