Bad Religion – Into the Unknown

ARTIST: Bad Religion   220px-Brintotheunknown

TITLE:  Into the Unknown




OTHER SONGS YOU MAY KNOW: Probably none, since they repudiated it almost after release.

LINEUP: Greg Graffin, Brett Gurewitz, Paul Dedona, Davy Goldman

WHAT’S IT ALL ABOUT: What happens when a hardfastrules punk rock band tries to become ELP? This album.

SOME WORDS, PHRASES AND CLAUSES ABOUT THIS RECORD: Legendary and conspicuous only by its absence, this nugget from the history of Bad Religion stands out like a bad cliché.

It’s noble, and wise, and just to try to keep one’s sound moving forward. But to go from 0 to a Yes album in 6 months? That’s…that’s a bit abrupt. OK, it’s not a full blown prog album, but to their punk rock fans, it may as well have been. Just the thought of a keyboard on a Bad Religion song made them do the worst thing possible – not go to the shows.

As for the album – I think it’s undercooked. The synth parts overwhelm some of the songs, and while the ambition is there, the songs are not. Neither is the real commitment to this idea and vision. It’s a curio and should be heard as just that.

NOTES & MINUTIAE: As you may know, this never was released on CD and was basically impossible to find after 1984 or so. It was released as part of a huge Bad Religion set, but not as a standalone, and it’s not streaming, either. I found it on YouTube, as a scratchy recording from vinyl. That’s probably the right sound for this.


GRADE: C: It’s not horrible, just misguided.


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