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The Ungovernable Force

Conflict

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Album Review

Perhaps Conflict's best and most inspiring record, The Ungovernable Force is epic punk rock from a group in its prime. They take on familiar subjects, from environmental degradation to police brutality, only the music on The Ungovernable Force is more tuneful than usual, while still brutal sounding when it needs to be, while the lyrics are insightful on a variety of topics. Just the title itself, The Ungovernable Force, shows that Conflict and the anarchist movement of which they were a part at the time thought they could really take on the state, this in the heart of Thatcher's England. The album is not as cynical as some of their later records. It was created at a time when a lot was happening, when thousands showed up at demonstrations and Conflict's gigs. The songs on The Ungovernable Force all flow together, and the album is majestic in parts, but more often ferocious sounding. The beginning of the record is stunning, with a gong, a woman's soaring voice, and feedback giving way to a thrashing bass and crunchy guitar. But the end of the album is a bit of a down note, with a piano and a woman singing a song that is pretty wimpy-sounding for Conflict. Though not as consistently rocking as It's Time to See Who's Who, The Ungovernable Force is more in the tradition of the sweeping epic of an album that Conflict tried to pull off, and never as successfully as on this record. [The 2006 edition includes seven bonus tracks and remixes.]

Biography

Formed: 1981 in England

Genre: Alternative

Years Active: '80s, '90s, '00s

Anarchy in the U.K., indeed — such was the ultimate goal for the fiercely political British punk band Conflict, a group fueled by its hatred of Thatcher's England, the media, the military, and the general status quo of late 20th century life. Conflict played its first gig in 1981 led by vocalist Colin Jerwood, who would remain one of the group's few constants throughout its fluid existence. Much more permanent was the group's political agenda, which was already firmly ensconced by the release...
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The Ungovernable Force, Conflict
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