The Exploited Re-Releases – The Massacre: Beat the Bastards: Fuck the System

albums by:
The Exploited
Version:
Audio CD
Price:
£10.99

Reviewed by:
Rating:
4
On 8 March 2014
Last modified:23 August 2016

Summary:

If I was ranking them I'd put them in this order 1) Beat The Bastards 2) The Massacre 3) Fuck The System with the first two getting four stars and the last one three. Overall three great albums, well thought out, some interesting lyrics and good production.

Formed in Edinburgh in 1978 by Terry Buchan (vocals) and Stevie Ross (guitar) the original line up also included Andy McNiven (drums) and Alan Paget (bass). Terry left to be replaced by his older ex-soldier brother Walter Buchan known as Wattie, who has been the stalwart and driving force ever since. With too many personnel changes to list, a lot has happened over the intervening years from causing riots, to an appearance on Top of the Pops, and most recently a live heart attack when Wattie was taken ill and suffered a heart attack whilst performing on stage in Lisbon, Portugal. This has meant that forthcoming shows have been postponed whilst Wattie awaits, then recovers from, a triple heart bypass and we at PlanetMosh wish Wattie a speedy recovery.

I’ve seen a few Punk bands over the years but never The Exploited although I still remember seeing Dead Cities on Top of the Pops way back in 1981 and I still have a copy of it on blue vinyl somewhere! With three albums to be reissued on Nuclear Blast records, on 14th March in Europe and 17th March in the UK, there’s a total of 46 tracks but Dead Cities isn’t one of them. I’m not going to cover each and every track. I’ll start with a few general comments then pull out a few highlights/observations from each album.

Each album opens with the title track and there has been quite a lot of thought and research put into the many and varied introductions, not just for the title tracks but in general, and I’ll comment on a few of those as I go along. The majority of the songs are written by frontman Wattie. The sound is Punk/Thrash Crossover with the instruments being played at 100mph, best played loud but due to the overuse of the ‘F’ word not in the presence of children, grandparents (erm… I’m old enough to be a Granny so scrap that!) or those of a nervous disposition and certainly not for the easily offended. If The Exploited had a swear box at every gig they would be multi-millionaires by now! I can’t say that Wattie has a particularly great voice, the way he sings is aggressive and brash with a harder edge, however the singing style suits the songs. You wouldn’t expect to hear an angelic voice singing songs titled Sick Bastard, Fucking Liar or System Fucked Up – well I woudn’t. Would you? Comparable bands GBH, Discharge, Bones and of course the rock band which crosses over to Punk – Motorhead!

The Massacre

Recorded at Slaughterhouse Studios and originally released in April 1990 via Rough Justice. The title track The Massacre opens with a clip from a news item ‘Helpless people were murdered like animals in a slaughterhouse ….’ fast beat, fast guitars, fast drums. Chorus The Massacre. Why? With the Massacres and whys getting louder and more pained as the song goes on ending with an abrupt, anguished why? Sick Bastard reminded me of a October 31 (a band who have also recently re-released a couple of their albums) and their song The Warlock. Porno Slut must be a love song with the lyrics ‘I love you Porno Slut’ and towards the end a seductive female voice saying ‘I want to swallow your cock’ accompanied by screaming riffs! Don’t Pay the Poll Tax, a protest song dating back to the Thatcher years. Starting with a newsreader intro ‘A millionaire living in a mansion pays less in Poll Tax than a low income family in a small house…..’ and includes another news clip part way through. Fuck Religion puts me in mind of how The Sweet’s Ballroom Blitz would sound if it were Punked up and played at speed whilst Power Struggle is like a slowed down version of Babylon’s Burning by The Ruts. Ending with the super fast Scaling the Derry Wall with a few bark/yelps thrown in! Highlight track for me – Sick Bastards.

 

The Massacre Album Artwork
The Massacre Album Artwork

Track List:

1: The Massacre
2: Sick Bastard
3: Porno Slut
4: Now I’m Dead
5: Boys In Blue
6: Dog Soldier
7: Don’t Pay the Poll Tax
8: Fuck Religion
9: About To Die
10: Blown Out Of The Sky
11: Police Shit
12: Stop The Slaughter
13: Barry Prossit
14: Don’t Really Care
15: Power Struggle
15: Scaling The Derry Wall

Beat The Bastards

Beat the Bastards was originally released in April 1996 via Rough Justice. Beat the Bastards, the opening track starts with a horror film type intro which leads into a song with a similar speed and ferocity to G.B.H. say City Baby Attacked by Rats. Don’t Blame Me is a bit Megadeth meet Motorhead, the bass line of Peace Sells blending with the screaming riffs of Ace of Spades. Law for the Rich starts with a spoken ‘I know that law you bastards’ then straight into fast drums and guitars and the chorus ‘There’s a law for the rich, a law for the people like you and me’ accompanied with some great riffs and sirens then ending with the spoken word, this time a sniggering ‘They forced me to do it. I’m innocent’ They Lie starts off with a Jimmy Crankie type voice saying ‘I swear on my wee sisters life leading into superfast drums and screaming riffage before ending with wee Jimmy again ‘Cross my heart and hope to die, stick a needle in my eye. I never done it, honest to God’

Fightback begins with to the voices of two men squaring up for a fight which leads into a brutal assault on the ears! A good track and whilst I’ve never seen The Exploited I have seen the band Fight Back, fronted by Tony Warren who used to play drums for The Exploited and was drumming on the album The Massacre, they may well have played this track. I can’t remember, but I do remember them covering Dead Cities.  Massacre of Innocents starts of with operatic type female singing before launching into Black Sabbath Symptom of the Universe riffs. Police TV starts with a horror movie intro including screams and police sirens. The last track Serial Killer at nearly seven minutes is the longest track on, not only this but, all three albums. Packing in some great riffs. The highlight track, however, for me is the title track Beat the Bastards.

Beat The Bastards Album Artwork
Beat The Bastards Album Artwork

Track List:

1: Beat the Bastards
2: Affected By Them
3: Don’t Blame Me
4: Law for the Rich
5: System Fucked Up
6: They Lie
7: If You’re Sad
8: Fightback
9: Massacre of Innocents
10: Police TV
11: Sea of Blood
12: Fifteen Years
13: Serial Killer

Fuck The System

Originally released in January 2003 via Dream Catcher Records. Fuck The System was recorded at Chapel Studios. Slaughterhouse may have been a more aptly named studio as I felt this was the most aggressive album out of the three. A long drawn out cry of anguish like a Tarzan call of Punk opens the album and title track, a call which as over forty seconds is quite disturbing. If you can get past the opening cries you get a great track with Motorhead style riffs and beat. You’re just a Fucking Liar is another fast paced track followed by more of the same in I don’t want a Holiday in the Sun then You’re a Fucking Bastard. An angry shout of ‘Minnion, turn that flipping music down’ (I think that’s what he says anyway) is the intro to Noize Annoys a cacophony of annoying noise. Chaos is My Life starts of with ‘Disorder, chaos, anarchy, now that’s fun’ and chaotic drums and riffs to go with the chorus ‘Chaos is my life’ and this track leads nicely in to the next track Violent Society with the chorus ‘Violence is my life’ Death Before Dishonour begins with a military drum beat, a barked left, right. The next two songs also contain a bark or a yelp (as do quite a few of the tracks) with the last track Pulling Us Down having the same fast beat as Violent Society. Highlight track Death Before Dishonour.

Track List:

Fuck The System Album Artwork
Fuck The System Album Artwork

1: Fuck the System
2: Fucking Liar
3: Holiday in the Sun
4: You’re a Fucking Bastard
5: Lie to Me
6: There Is No Point
7: Never Sell Out
8: Noize Annoys
9: I Never Changed
10: Why Are You Doing This to Me
11: Chaos Is My Life
12: Violent Society
13: Was It Me
14: Adding to their fears
15: Death Before Dishonour
16: Driving Me Insane
17: Pulling Us Down

If I was ranking them I’d put them in this order 1) Beat The Bastards 2) The Massacre  3) Fuck The System with the first two getting four stars and the last one three. Overall three great albums, well thought out, some interesting lyrics and good production.

The Exploited current line up:

Wattie Buchan – Vocals /  Matt Justice – Guitar / Wullie Buchan – Drums / Irish Rob – Bass

Links:

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/The-Exploited-the-real-exploited-page/343212152376762

Website: http://www.the-exploited.net/

Nuclear Blast on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/nuclearblasteurope

If I was ranking them I'd put them in this order 1) Beat The Bastards 2) The Massacre 3) Fuck The System with the first two getting four stars and the last one three. Overall three great albums, well thought out, some interesting lyrics and good production.

About Louise Swift

I first went to a gig in 1981, Gillan at Leeds University. I've been a regular gig goer ever since. I haven't kept count of how many gigs I've been to over the intervening years, but it's a lot! My favourite bands are AC/DC then, in no particular order, Anti-Nowhere League, Slaughter and the Dogs, Towers of London and Dirt Box Disco. I tend to like Glam/Punk and rude offensive lyrics, not sure what that says about me but as Animal would say 'So What!' The question was recently put to me - did I write for any online publications? My reply - No, but I'd like to! Planetmosh was suggested and I found myself offering to review Aces High Festival. Easy peasy I thought! Well not quite, if a jobs worth doing it's worth doing well! I had sixteen bands to research. I found I actually enjoyed that and it kept me too busy to be making lunatic comments on Facebook! ;) Then I felt a bit inadequately qualified. I mean, who am I to comment on others, when my musical expertise extends to being able to play a mean Greensleeves on the recorder and a passable Annie's song on the flute! Haven't picked up either instrument for years! What I do have, however, is over 30 years of experience as a gig goer, so I can comment on what I like and what I don't! It's only my opinion and, if I don't like a band it doesn't mean they are bad, just not to my own liking. I admire anyone who has the guts to get up on that stage and have a go!
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