Propagandhi – Failed States (For Fans of SNFU, Good Riddance, Bigwig)

When it comes to Propagandhi, people are split into three distinct groups.  You have those who are fucking obsessed, those who only dig their early stuff (Less Talk More Rock, How To Clean Everything), and those who don’t like Propagandhi at all and their opinion is irrelevant.  I am in the obsessed category, and completely fucking loved their 2009 release of Supporting Caste and wasn’t sure if Failed States would hold up.  With 15 new songs (12 if you get the regular version, but the deluxe version is totally worth it with 2 extra thrash tracks and one out-take) Propagandhi returns with their thrashiest and hardest fucking hitting album yet.

Fans if earlier works hoping for a return to the old skate punk ways or just even a flirtation with the melodies (which they gave us with The Bangers Embrace on Supporting Caste) will be disappointed.  Personally, I fucking love the face-melting thrash songs that Propagandhi writes, and if you dig songs like Fuck The Border or This Is Your Life, then you’ll love at least 3/4th of this album.  Songs like “Ratten Cane”, “Status Update”, and “Failed States” just straight up shred.

In between the thrash, Propagandhi experiments a bit with the darker, brooding sound of Potemkin City Limits.  I wasn’t a huge fan of Potemkin (or as Jaded Punk Hulk would say, “Pokemon City Limits”), but I’m finding even these slower songs to be a bit of a grower for me.  The album slows down a bit with “Unscripted Moments” and “Lotus Gait”,  before closer “Duplicate Keys” (which is incredibly reminiscent of A Speculative Fiction, and easily one of my favorite songs on Failed States).  Closer that is, unless you have the Deluxe version…  which in that case, you are treated to “The Fucking Rich Fuck The Poor” which is THE HEAVIEST song Propagandhi has ever performed (which thanks to Seth in the comments pointed out was actually a Global Genocide cover… fuck yeah).

Easily one of my favorite albums of the year so far, it’s good to know that these Canadians still put out music that will rip off your testicles/ovaries and shove them down your throat.

Propagandhi – Failed States

We Interviewed Todd The Rod of Propagandhi
Propagandhi – Where Quantity is Job #1
Propagandhi – Supporting Caste
Propagandhi – Less Talk More Rock
How To Clean Everything


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  1. “The Fucking Rich Fuck The Poor” is actually a cover of a band called Global Genocide.

    I will say that I have seen tons of people who went apeshit over Supporting Caste but weren’t huge fans of Potemkin City Limits. This makes no sense to me because SC owes so much to PCL. The sprawling, epic songs on PCL paved the way for what they would do on SC and Failed States. While Todays Empires was a speed metal/powerviolence influenced melodic hardcore album, PCL was the first to have real epic progressive thrash tunes, and also when Chris started to get into writing “speculative fiction” style lyrics. While Supporting Caste is the more accessible record, fans would be foolish to gloss over PCL and not give it time to sink in, because it is extremely rewarding and they nailed it in every aspect. I think Failed States is essentially flawless too, as are all their recent four, but I don’t think it’s the best place to start for newcomers because to me it can only be fully enjoyed within the context of previous three’s influence. I’m a nerd.

    1. Hey Seth,

      Thanks for the info duuude. I fixed it in the post about it being a cover.

      Don’t get me wrong, I respect Potemkin City Limits. I listened to it a lot when it came out and see it as the stepping stone to Supporting Caste (they mix the aggression and melodies of Today’s Empire with the epicness of PCL). However, as a whole I just don’t find the songs (minus a few… Speculative Fiction, Die Jugand, Sustainable Capitalism, and Superbowl Patriot) very memorable. I don’t think it’s a terrible album, but compared to the others, I just don’t dig it. I find myself saying “hey, I should just put on Less Talk More Rock” or something when I play it.

      Anyways, Propagandhi nerds unite, all good homie.

      1. Once PCL grew on me it became one of my favorite. “Bringer of Greater Things” is awesome, and “Name and Address Withheld” has the bonus of having a Star Wars reference right in the middle of it.

        Also “Iteration” is probably the best lyrical condemnation of the Bush Administration and the Iraq War out there.

        Just my two cents of course.

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