Born from the race riots that occurred in London in the summer of 1976, there is a famous story about the Clash being caught in the middle of it, nearly ending up beaten in an alley. But this is no racist attack -- though it was sometimes misunderstood as such. Instead, it was a broader call to arms -- a wake-up call to a privileged white majority to be mindful of complacency and blind participation in a socioeconomic system which was rapidly failing them due to lack of interest. Ultimately, the Clash were to come to understand that they would have to pick and choose their causes a little more specifically, since "White Riot" was essentially a lyrical failure. But the musical essence of it is pure punk rock in a bottle: it's easy to drink in the three chords charged with anger, urgency, and agit-prop. It may also be one of the speediest punk songs out there -- rivaled only by the speediest of speed metal and later, California punk. There are even those who claim that the recorded pace is only a fraction of how fast the band was capable of playing it live. Whoosh.