Bad Religion had always warned against the excesses of the future and the assimilation of individuality. But the gospel cut deeper with Against the Grain. Songs began in an instant, with the single crack of a snare drum signaling the beginning of another screed. The guitars came in, twining between fiery leads and urgent, sometimes hyper chording -- the album seemed like a signal fire to the lost tribes of hardcore.
Asked to describe his style when he first dropped by the Memphis Recording Service to cut an acetate, Elvis Presley replied, "I don't sound like nobody." He wasn't kidding. This box set which collects all of Presley's pre-RCA recordings captures him in his period of greatest discovery and exploration, as his breathless fusion of R&B, country, pop, gospel, and lots more cohered into a sound that would entirely reshape popular music. He had fun doing it, too.