Against Me!

Total Clarity

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After a major release, Against Me! often regroup by putting out a previous album’s demos. Like The Original Cowboy, which compiled rough drafts from 2001’s As the Eternal Cowboy, Total Clarity is a compilation of early takes from 2005’s Searching for a Former Clarity. Most of the songs from the finished album are revealed in stripped-down form, and they sound just a little dirtier. Even without the extraneous overdubs, like the horn section in “Miami,” the Florida punks’ music still sounds powerful and well recorded. Since the differences are subtle, these are tracks that will probably only be of interest to die-hard fans. However, the real treats are the songs that originally didn’t make the final cut, like live favorite "Exhaustion & Disgust," which finally sees a formal release, and a heavy duty punk cover of Cyndi Lauper’s “Money Changes Everything."

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