Join The Army review by Suicidal Tendencies

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  • Released: Jan 1, 1987
  • Sound: 8
  • Lyrics: 9
  • Overall Impression: 8
  • Reviewer's score: 8.3 Superb
  • Users' score: 9.6 (9 votes)
Suicidal Tendencies: Join The Army

Sound — 8
After their classic debut album made in 1983 was released, ST took a hiatus lasting until 1987, out of which this album was created. Only singer mike muir and bassist RJ Herrera were left. This album is much more thrash than the debut, "Suicidal Tendencies" was, but still mixed their original hardcore sound with thrash, and the album became what is some of what is known as crossover. The production of the album is very underground-sounding, the guitar is very sludgy and fuzzy, while the drums and bass sometimes meld together, with the vocals flying over the mix. For songs of this caliber at this time, the production does not matter. The songs sometimes have transitions between crunchy metal riffs and hardcore flurry, making for a perfect mix.

Lyrics — 9
Mike Muir switches to doing more singing than the usual yelling or ranting on the first album, which is good since the songs would not fit with yelling on them. Rather, his voice is still gruff and sometimes reminiscent of Lemmy from Motorhead. There is a little it of psuedo-rap on "Join The Army". The lyrics themselves are actually quite genious, as on "A Little Each Day". They are usually about frustration ("War Inside My Head", "I Feel Your Pain", standing together ("Join The Army"), skating ("Possessed to Skate"), and other topics usual for Suicidal.

Overall Impression — 8
I will now rate each song individually. 01.Suicidal Maniac: starts out with a crunchy thrash riff to incite a mosh pit and breaks into the first verse with the classic crossover sound and the lyrics talk about a maniac, possibly caused by their music. A fitting opener to the album. //8 02.Join The Army: a slower song, opening with a military snare drum in the intro. About how good it is to be in the "suicidal army". Good solo, and was re-released as "Join The New Army" on the greatest hits album. The fill solos and chugging guitar make it an instant headbanging song. //8 03.You Got, I Want: starts out with a fast drum fill and bass and the chorus. It describes a girlfriend that feels she is being used by her boyfriend in the song. The bass is very bouncy and strong, maybe the only song with a great bass use. The chorus and pre-chorus are instantly catchy upon listening and the solo is almost reminiscent of Iron Maiden melody. One of the strong moments of the album. //9 04.A Little Each Day: a slower song with a build up intro. The song itself is very melodic and the lyrical content is very inspiring with the main line "I died a little today/I die a little each day". It was re-recorded for Still Cyco After All These Years with better production. //10 05.The Prisoner: a heavier song off the album, with great breakdown riffs all throughout the song is a great transition from "A Little Each Day". It is about rejecting politics that other people try to project onto you. Not as eventful as the other songs, but good to hold the album up, and is worth it for the lyrics ("You say you're political/I say 'Screw that, you're just a fool'"). //7 06.War Inside My Head: now we're talking. Possibly the best song off the album, it starts out with a great metal riff, and goes into a build up that almost explodes upon the first verse. The song is almost exclusively a thrash song with the spider-riff running throughout it. The lyrics are very catchy with smart hooks and rhymes that are easily shouted. //10 07.I Feel Your Pain: another bass-heavy song, that shows off the band's true crossover sound. One of the more pure songs off the album that is less varied than the others which makes for a good listen. //8 08.Human Guinea Pig: starts out with crazy soloing and tapping on the guitar and then explodes into fast palm mutes and drum fills. It has the distinction of being almost purely a hardcore song and reminds me a lot of the debut album songs, but more technical. Just overall a fast, punky song. //9 09.Possessed To Skate: the skater anthem that gave the band many new fans with boards. One of the most up-beat songs on the album all about skating. The chorus and solo are genius and the music video is almost twisted sister-like. //9 10.No Name, No Words: at this point, the album starts to slightly go downhill. The song itself is good, just not as solid as the others. The music in the song is very upbeat with happy power chords, but with angsty lyrics. It reminds me of "I saw Your Mommy...". //7 11.Born To Be Cyco: about living free and having a fun life. The lyrics and band shouts are very good, but the song just seems to be going nowhere in the better part of it, and is hard to get your attention. //7 12.Two Wrongs Don't Make a Right (But They Make Me Feel a Whole Lot better): with lyrics that make you go "that's so true," about revenge and a catchy chorus, it makes a listenable song, but that's about it. Listenable, but not crucial to the album's structure. //8 13.Looking In Your Eyes: the album ender and a somewhat upbeat song. It is a fitting end to the album, with somber lyrics. The song slows down at the end with a great solo and then the song ends. the album is over after those last few chords //8 The album was a fitting transition to their thrash years and a great album for crossover thrash, and overall a good album. If it was stolen, I wouldn't buy it again but just download it.

7 comments sorted by best / new / date

    Awesome review. I love ST and Join the Army is a classic and one of my all-time favorite albums.
    doesn't matter, i'll probably get hit by a car anyways
    great album, but i prefer the original personally, the whole rant-yelling thing worked really well for the early songs.