Review: Alarm E.P.***1/2

This is the kind of record that could only come from a young band. Determined, committed and naive, the five songs on this EP have all the hallmarks of idealistic youth: simple, forceful music, rambling strings of earnestly poetic images and the conviction that speaking out just might change a few things. And like Bob Dylan, U2 or the Clash, these four young Welshmen pull it off. The Alarm don’t take any well-defined political stands here, despite plenty of early-Clash trappings. As their name implies, they simply ring the warning bell as loudly as they can while the world around them begins to collapse. It’s an apocalypse, though, as likely to be Biblical as it is nuclear; “The Alarm” is equal parts “Sandinista!” and the Book of Revelation. Though some lines are so self-consciously poetic you want to wince, the Alarm wisely stick to basic, rousing singalong lines in the choruses, where it counts: “Come on down and make the stand,” or “Our hearts must have the courage to keep on marching on.” Even more important is th Alarm’s bracing acoustic-guitar-based sound and their anthemic melodies. The choruses of such tunes as “The Stand” and “For Freedom” are stirring, uplifting and charged with all the infectious fervor youth can muster. Listen to the Alarm now, before they grow up.

Publication::Publication:Rolling Sto
Author::Steve Pond