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NOFX “Never Trust A Hippie” EP Review

Published in Blog, Culture Bully. Tags: , .

The latest EP from NOFX, Never Trust A Hippie, serves as a precursor and introduction to the band’s album Wolves In Wolves’ Clothing. Through the band’s 23 years together it has provided a unique take on classic liberalism ranging from 1991’s blast on vegetarianism (Liberal Animation) or 2003’s response to Bush’s presidency (War on Errorism). One of the unique, and often criticized, characteristics of the band is that they honestly seem to be trying to evolve. Whether or not you like, dislike or have no opinion of the band, it’s fairly apparent that something’s changing when a band’s lyrical base shifts away from “Oi!” and tongue-in-cheek pseudo-punk to topics of religion and politics. But, such is the story of NOFX these days.

The Never Trust a Hippie EP starts out with the killer ode to Minneapolis, “Seeing Double at the Triple Rock,” which is as loud and powerful NOFX song as any. The only unfortunate consequence of starting any album off with the most complete and solid track is that the rest of the album seems weak in comparison. While this isn’t entirely the case, as the politics and religious cynicism that follows remain a strong focal point, the tempo is lost and the EP suffers for it.

Back to the subject of lyrical growth for a moment, however. I once had a philosophy professor whose first comment on the first day of classes was that he’s tired of arguing his points when, after twenty-some years of teaching, he knows that he’s right in his own mind. NOFX comes off in much the same way with the track “You’re Wrong.” Blasting homophobic nature, right wing Christianity, the NRA and capital punishment comes off as a blunt look at where the band is currently at ideologically; and I think that’s important. Sometimes even the liberal media (NOFX?) help explain why there’s a lot of anger stemming from (what some might consider) big-headed movements driven by egos, complacent laws and apathy. Maybe, just maybe…NOFX isn’t “right” about “everything”, but from time to time, it doesn’t hurt to hear multiple sides to any number of arguments.

And if that doesn’t cut it, there’s still the one (five) liners, “I might be an adult but I’m still a minor at heart, OK my liver is my senior part, but that’s a part you can trade in, When your band has been a band longer than the Ramones and critics coin you ‘the punk Rolling Stones,’ then you’ll know this is for life.” …Because after all these years, I know I’m right in my own mind.

[This post was first published by Culture Bully.]