In the grand tradition of their noble Canadian forefathers D.O.A., on their third album the Von Zippers reveal themselves to be a political punk band that doesn't sound like a political punk band. The Crime Is Now! overflows with chunky guitar riffs, stomped-out beats, and beer-soaked, good-time attitude (especially now that they've been stripped down to a keyboard-less power trio), but a listen to the lyrics reveals that these guys have plenty on their minds -- genetic experimentation ("SGWTF"), global warming ("Insect Idol"), corporate greed ("Blue Suit Blues"), the need for economic and political equality ("Common Sense Party Theme"), and all manner of other stuff that's stuck in their craw ("Put on the Brakes"). But at the same time, these guys proclaim their concerns with a gutsy urgency that never sounds precious or pretentious, and "Friday Is the Spice of Life" (in which they offer their recipe for a perfect evening -- "kung fu movies, Estrus records, and beer!") shows they haven't gone Fugazi on us. A good slab of blue-collar punk rock that's book smart and street smart at the same time, The Crime Is Now! proves that enlightening the masses can be a whole lot of fun if you do it right.
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AllMusic Review by Mark Deming