A nascent Henry Rollins waxing hoarse about cops, fights, drug abuse, and girls while a gruff rudimentary thud slams by in the background is about as simple as it gets. But this simple slab of D.C. vinyl -- along with the first Teen Idles 7" -- greatly altered American punk up and down the East Coast as well as throughout the Midwest. The sonic emphasis for young bands shifted from Ramones/Sex Pistols imitation to a new kind of louder and faster music: hardcore. Additionally and maybe even more importantly, the fledgling Dischord Records that released No Policy inspired a proliferation of D.I.Y. labels that has since continued unabated. S.O.A. didn't invent hardcore -- Black Flag or Bad Brains might stake that claim -- but the band's stripped-down sound at the right time, together with the youthful scene from which S.O.A. emerged, help make No Policy a lasting document of influence.
Share this page
AllMusic Review by Matt Kantor