Record of the Day - 01/20/2022

Bad Brains - I Against I

Bad Brains made a name for themselves in the early 80’s hardcore scene by playing at breakneck speed but also by incorporating influences from other genres such as reggae into their sound. Standing out from the crowd from the very beginning it shouldn’t have come as a surprise that they wouldn’t stand still and keep evolving artistically. Yet few had expected a left turn quite like “I Against I” - our Record of the Day - when it was released in 1986. They slowed the tempo down considerably but didn’t sacrifice their fierceness. The basslines were funky, the guitar riffs closer to metal than punk and H.R.’s vocal lines ranged from sweet to brash, recorded reportedly in just two hours right before leaving to serve a prison sentence. It only added to the emotional intensity of his performance. A highly influential album that foreshadowed the dismantlement of genre boundaries within heavy music in subsequent years.

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