Fugazi, In on the Kill Taker

Joe Gross

By Joe Gross

on 04.22.11 in Reviews
A return to rage as powerful as it was heartfelt.

Underground leaders at the time but all but unknown compared to, say, Pearl Jam, Fugazi released this album as the rise of alternative rock no longer seemed like a fluke but a historical inevitability. After 1991's bone-dry Steady Diet of Nothing,1993's Kill Taker was a return to rage as powerful as it was heartfelt. The furious opener "Facet Squared" finds Ian MacKaye writing perfect punk maxims ("We draw lines, stand behind them/ That's why flags are SUCH UGLY THINGS”) while Picciotto shouted out Native America ("Smallpox Champion") and his favorite filmmaker ("Cassavetes"). "Great Cop" yells at journalists, "Sweet and Low" is an instrumental lullaby and "Instrument" tries to get the balance right. For all emo took from the album, that style never did catch up to Kill Taker's refined, hellacious power.