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The Clash had a world to win...,
This review is from: London Calling (Audio CD)
...and with LONDON CALLING, the British "punk" (here of all places, the term seems absurdly restrictive) group stretched out and absorbed musical styles as diverse as the listeners this crowning album would come to captivate (which audience came to include the countless parents - and grandparents - of college-aged Clash fans who found their elders at odd moments singing and/or dancing to key tracks). Legendary producer Guy Stevens (since deceased) rode herd over the band during production, night after night, as tempers frayed - and helped squeeze from them one of the signature albums of the rock era. From the blood-and-thunder howl of Joe Strummer on the title-track opener, to the infectious melody and winning vocals of Mick Jones on the final, originally unlisted "Train in Vain," the songs here assembled range musically across ska, reggae, punk, roots rock and rockabilly, and lyrically embody the band's trademark obsessions: the Jamaican - and American Western - outlaw tradition, Hollywood and its larger-than-life mythmaking, the oppressions of class and exhilarating risks of defiance, corporate commercialism and the co-opting of authenticity, the transmutation of anger into art. The whole work, when all is said, just plain *rocks*, with a density of propulsive energy that will have even the most jaded among us throwing away their crutches, on their feet and sweating happily to their favorite tracks. As those who wore out their original cassette copies over a decade ago will agree.