EP review: RANDOM CONFLICT – Black List

After nearly three decades of an on and off existence the band Random Conflict are finally starting to get some recognition and respect. Sole original member Bill Reeves has watched as his band has gone through countless line-up changes, an extensive hiatus, but since 2012, with the addition of drummer Edwin Coombs (bassist Brian Murphee has been in RC since 96) Random Conflict have released a handful of albums, singles & EP’s and made some guest appearances and have finally solidified into a very tight and exceptional punk rock outfit. Despite the lengthy career the band is either legendary or unknown depending on who you ask (I’m going with legendary, but if you’ve never heard of them I wouldn’t be shocked.) I’ve only been a fan a very brief time, but in that short period have gained a love and respect for them as deeply as some bands I have loved for decades. Coming off the huge response to their 2013 release Tradition Is the Enemy, Random Conflict are back with a brilliant EP called Black List.

Before you push away the punk rock aspect of their music (if you’re not a punk fan,) one of the beauties of Random Conflict is that they have a very punk sound and approach, but it’s tempered with large helpings of metal. Truly one of the best contemporary crossover bands still slogging it out, Black List picks up where Tradition Is the Enemy left off: exposing hypocrisy in society, instilling pride in individuality, uplifting their fans to be proud of who they are and not letting anyone push them around. Despite the music being angry, the songs and the attitudes of the members has always been about unity and inspiring, about standing up and sticking together against adversity whether that adversity is a corrupt government or simply being bullied. With songs like “Not This Time (And Never Again),” “As the World Burns,” and “Hypocrisy (Is Not A Moral Victory)” Bill, Brian and Edwin deliver sonic intensity blending heavy metal intensity with punk rock sensibility, delivering a short but very powerful EP.

One of the best parts of Random Conflict (other than their amazing music) is their love and passion for not only the music they make, but for their fans. They are certainly one of the best bands on social media in regards to interacting with the fans. Plus the handful of shows I have been lucky enough to make they’ve always been so generous and gracious with their time. In world where so many performers just want to jump off the stage and onto their van/bus and head to the next town it is refreshing to have a class act like Random Conflict. Black List is a top notch album and should appeal to fans of punk, thrash, and crossover, or really anyone that has great taste in heavy music. **** 1/2

Review by Chris Martin

In his show broadcast on Get Ready to ROCK! Radio on 24 May David Randall played a further selection of artists and albums included in the new Features series, “2020 Vision”.

Listen in to Get Ready to ROCK! Radio…
Click the appropriate icons at the top of the page.

Featured Albums w/c 25 May (Mon-Fri)

09:00-12:00 FM Synchronized (Frontiers)
12:00-13:00 THE ROCKET DOLLS The Art Of Disconnect (indie)
14:00-16:00 BEN KUNDER Searching For The Stranger (indie)

Power Plays w/c 11 May (Mon-Fri)

THE MERCY KILLS Alone (Golden Robot Records)
DEAD REYNOLDS By Your Side (indie)
THE JAILBIRDS Watery Grave (Golden Robot Records)
ALI MASS & MICKY MOODY These Times (Last Man Music)
MASSIVE WAGONS Bangin In Your Stereo (Earache)
UDO We Are One (AFM Records)

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