Worthless United

A Nation Under

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Anyone who listened to alternative rock stations in the '90s or early 2000s was bound to hear an abundance of artists who had some type of punk influence. From post-grunge to emo to rap-metal, punk was an ingredient of just about everything that alt-rock stations were playing during the Bill Clinton and George W. Bush years. What those formats didn't play was a lot of punk revival bands -- that is, '90s and 2000s bands with an old-school approach to punk (old-school as in late '70s/early '80s). The punk revival movement has, for the most part, been an underground (as opposed to mass appeal) phenomenon -- and Worthless United, like other punk revival outfits who emerged in the '90s, has catered to a small cult following. The New Jersey band had been together for ten years when, in 2003, Now or Never Records released A Nation Under. This CD is a generally decent, if imperfect, example of the sort of old-school punk that Worthless United specializes in. Despite having a New Jersey address, Worthless United have a very British-influenced sound -- the influence of the Clash and other British bands is impossible to miss on stomping yet melodic tracks like "I Am Nothing" and "Neverwork" (a humorous ode to slackerdom). But as indebted as Worthless United are to British punk, they aren't quite an Oi! band. While the Templars are American punk revival outfit with an straight-up Oi! approach, Worthless United combine British and U.S. influences and tend to come out more on the British side. A Nation Under is slightly uneven, but all things considered, it is a decent representation of the band's old-school-style punk.

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