With punk's demise declared in 1977, a new wave of bands rose to the fore: all hail the New Romantics. However, simultaneously scurrying from the wreckage were groups of working class yobs who refused to allow punk to play dead. Cock Sparrer, Angelic Upstarts, Exploited, et. al, by furiously stomping on the dying movement, resuscitated it, albeit in a far different form: Street Punk, soon to be rechristened hardcore. The Explicits have no memory of that fateful era, the members weren't even born yet, regardless though, they effortlessly re-create the intensity of the time on their eponymous, debut album. Back then, fury was order of the day, an anger born of poverty, alienation, and despair, for unlike the mostly middle-class punk originators, their offspring hailed from Britain's grimiest streets. Their rage spilled across their music, their instruments weapons in which to thrash their oppressors, their words ammo to fire at their enemies. Amongst the canon they spit out were unforgettable anthems, but the Explicits' "Indestructible" is the best they never had, an outraged cry for power from the powerless. Even so, the quartet doesn't take all its cues from hardcore's earliest days; speedmetal and '90s American hardcore also seep into their sound. "Suffocate" even makes use of a classic rock styled riff, while "Idiopath" interjects a gloomy almost goth rock atmosphere. The irrepressible "Static" is a collage that conjures up everyone from the Buzzcocks to Screeching Weasel, Stiff Little Fingers to Dropkick Murphys. That latter is the catchiest number on the set, "Lies" the most ferocious, "No Remorse" the most relentless, "Hollywood" the heaviest hitting, and "Hallelujah" the most dizzying. Snarling, snapping, shouting, and occasionally even singing, frontwoman/rhythm guitarist Renee Phoenix is an unstoppable force who steamrolls across the set. Lead guitarist Kevin Vu's vicious leads slice and dice everything in his path, while the rhythm section batters all into submission. New school/old-school, rock and metal, the Explicits expose all their graves, disinter the bones, and beat their way into the future with them.
AllMusic Review by Jo-Ann Greene