Rated | Alphabetical
| Highest Rated 2006
A Winning Argument
Fugazi: The Argument
Ah, Fugazi. Politically charged to the point of near
self-parody, as passionate about its causes (which are legion) as its music.
Champions of the $10 CD (I actually picked up The Argument for
$8.99) and $5 live shows. In all things, as serious as a Dick Cheney heart
It would be easy to take shots at this seminal DIY outfit, to find chinks in its
overly anti-capitalistic armor. But such potshots would be missing the point,
since one listen to Fugazi's latest work, The Argument, transcends
the band's overtly left-wing political leanings, even when the lyrics refuse to
let you forget where these guys are coming from. In its incredible musicianship
and careful craftsmanship, The Argument also makes evident the
immense care with which this quartet goes about the business of record making.
The album begins with the stellar backbone of drummer Brendan Canty and bassist
Joe Lally providing a peerless rhythm section for guitarists Ian MacKaye and Guy
Picciotto to play off of. Tracks like "Full Disclosure" and "Life
and Limb" expertly showcase the interplay between the four musicians, the
backbeat providing a rock-solid foundation from which the twin guitars take
Yet it's the sixth track, "The Kill," that takes this work to places
earlier Fugazi efforts have rarely gone. Rising out of a delicate, almost gauzy
beat, the song feels as if it's exploring every corner of its considerable
acoustical range. Following on the heels of this is the album's centerpiece, the
brilliant "Strangelight," showcasing a patient, more focused Fugazi,
willing to take greater chances with its sound, each member trusting their
fellow bandmates' talents implicitly. Amy Domingues' work on cello blends seamlessly
with that of the four principals. The result is one of the great tracks in a
career filled with notable cuts.
Ultimately, The Argument succeeds on two distinct levels: First, it
reaffirms Fugazi's standing as one of the top rock outfits working today. And
second, whether you agree with the band's politics or not, it spells out the
members' litany of concerns in a creative and, thankfully, not overly preachy
Solid work, gentlemen.
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