“THE TIMES HAVE NEVER CHANGED”
DISCOS MACHETE / REBEL TIME RECORDS
“The Fallout’s new album could not be any more of a soundtrack to this moment. It’s packed full of fist-pumping punk rock anthems railing against injustice, inequality, and the systemic oppression of the people. It’s music in the grand tradition of late ’70s/early ’80s political punk rock and the protest folk that inspired it. This Toronto-based band has been active since 2004 and strives to write “songs of unity, inclusion, solidarity and struggle”. It’s inspiring now to see so many people finally waking up to injustice in the world and getting angry about it. The Fallout have been angry from the start, and they’re ready as always to take up the fight.
Out on Rebel Time Records and Discos Machete, The Times Have Never Changed opens with the premise that the protest music of the past promised change that has yet to be delivered. That’s not a cynical statement so much as it is a message that the struggle has yet to be won. Over the course of 15 tracks, it’s clear that The Fallout reserves all of its cynicism for institutions of power, which must be resisted and confronted if real change is to ever occur. So don’t let the album title fool you. These guys are true believers in the idea that songs can change the world – or at least that songs have the power to inspire the people who will change the world. If you can watch authority clash with dissent at this moment and honestly side with authority, this is clearly not the band or album for you. The Times Have Never Changed rages against everything from endless wars to partisan politics to institutionalized homophobia to organized religion to police brutality to the marginalization of sex workers. It’s full of urgency, passion, and absolute conviction. Sometimes the whole idea of “political punk” can turn people off because the music tends to be generic at best or an afterthought at worst. But The Fallout is a throwback to a time when protest punk was just as much about the tunes as it was about the message. These guys write catchy songs that are tailor made for you to shout along with. The music is powerful and aggressive but also fun to listen to. And that’s the way it ought to be. If a song is going to inspire people, it has to be inspiring. Songs like “Red Light Union” and “Raise Your Flag” will have you fired up to run through a brick wall for the cause! This is “street” punk in the truest sense of the term – music for the people that is relevant to what’s actually happening on our streets.
Certainly when this album was being prepared for release, the band and labels had no idea it would arrive on the eve of a mass protest movement of historic proportions. But the injustices and inequality that ignited this movement have persisted for geneerations. I used to assume that most people had the sense to know that racism is wrong and fascism is bad. But in this modern-day Bizarro World where anti-fascists are suddenly “terrorists” and not wanting cops to murder people of color is a “divisive” position, it’s clear that nothing is obvious. We can’t take for granted that sanity will prevail or that progress is inevitable. We must resist and keep resisting. And we will listen to awesome music while we do it.”
(Faster and Louder)
“With a mission statement that has them writing ‘songs of unity, inclusion, solidarity and struggle,’ Toronto’s The Fallout has been fighting the good fight since 2004. Come 2020, they still have a lot to get off their chest and they do it in the form of slick punk rock songs that will have you pumping your fists in the air while your brain is working overtime as they make you think about everything from partisan politics to institutionalized homophobia.
Their latest manifesto is called ‘The Times Have Never Changed’ and it is divided into 15 chapters worth of catchy, highly energetic punk rock bangers that harken back to the days of Stiff Little Fingers and the likes. Every revolution needs a soundtrack. Might as well make ‘The Times Have Never Changed’ yours.” (Punk Rock Theory)
“The Fallout are angry, passionate and committed to the numerous causes they support, like many a punk band. However, what sets them apart from the pack? TUNES my friends, that’s what. These political savvy punks have been railing against the tide since 2004 with a handful of releases which thankfully have been made available on their Bandcamp page remastered, remixed and not to be missed. Also, pay what you want, or free? Nah, scrap free, because we know what work goes into getting underground music out there don’t we?
Anyways, what do you get from The Fallout, 14 tracks of pacey, tuneful, fist pumping anthems, with their interpretations of this fucked up world chronicled into the biting lyrics with Lord Byron’s distinctive vocals to the fore. Patty O’Lantern (bass) he of Brutal Youth and Class War Kids infamy handles the vocals on “Can’t Take It,” “Invincible,” “Red Light Union,” & “Turn It Down,” with him adding a new dimension as well with his backing vocals throughout this great album. The Class War Kids classic “One Last Struggle” is covered within the album.
Comparisons … don’t we love ’em. Think of early SLF, Newtown Neurotics and fellow Canadians The Subhumans and you’re getting there and like the afore-mentioned, TUNES my friends. File under absolutely essential.”
(Just Some Punk Songs)
“The Fallout have released their latest full length “The Times Have Never Changed“ via Discos Machete Records and Rebel Time Records, the album follows up on their 2018 EP “Raise Your Flag And Other Anthems” and contains 15 tracks of partisan and unapologetically political punk rock. The Fallout have been delivering their own brand of intense political punk rock and delivering defiant anthems of unity, inclusion, solidarity and struggle since 2004, I’m ashamed to admit that The Fallout had flown under my radar until “The Times Have Never Changed“ landed in my inbox, if you aren’t familiar with The Fallout then there’s no reason not to put this right as the album is available as a pay-what-you-like release.
“The Times Have Never Changed“ hits you with the album’s title track, a song that echoes a common sentiment that the protest songs of the past continue to remain relevant. The same anger at injustice and inequality that fuels DOA, Adolescents and Anti-Flag is running through The Fallout‘s veins, this is an album that delivers intense political punk rock done just as it oughta be. Every single one of the fifteen tracks on “The Times Have Never Changed“ is delivered with a political conviction that few bands can match, and every single target of their fury is hit with a precision attack that is born of vintage punk rock and hardcore. The end result is that “The Times Have Never Changed“ is the perfect soundtrack for the dumpster fire that is 2020.
This year, more than other in my lifetime, has emphasised that things need to drastically change, until they do bands like The Fallout will continue to voice the frustration and anger at the state of the political landscape, all the while maintaining the belief that that times can change for the better. Outside of their native Canada I suspect The Fallout‘s message hasn’t been widely heard, something that they are putting right with their latest album as “The Times Have Never Changed“ is now available at the Discos Machete Records, Rebel Time Records and The Fallout‘s Bandcamp page as a pay-what-you-like release, as are all of The Fallout‘s releases including 2004’s “(Still) Turning Money Into Revolution“, 2005’s “What Is Past Is (Still) Prologue” and 2007’s “Dismantlement (Still)” that have been remixed, remastered and slightly renamed.”
(The Punk Site)
The Fallout (Toronto, ON) dropped their latest politically fuelled punk rock full length The Times Have Never Changed (released May 16th 2020) and fuck me, it’s an angry one. My fellow Bucketlist writer and good friend Syd Ghan (I can say we’re good friends, right Syd?) recently wrote a piece entitled Do Not Keep Politics Out Of Punk Rock (Or Any Music) and it makes for an excellent companion read to this review. Punk rock is inherently political; sometimes it’s more obvious than others, but it is a music of the repressed, the overlooked, the underdog and The Fallout are getting all up in our faces about it.
The Times Have Never Changed is vintage 90’s punk rock. Three chord riffs, a premium on catchy chorus’, break neck speed, straight forward drumming and bouncing groovy bass lines; early Green Day anyone? The Fallout take that “the world is garbage”and “we all fucking suck” energy and sprinkle in a little political commentary, but never so much that I’d call them an outright political band. The lead/title track is a straight to the point, anti war rager and under two minutes long (the entire album is fifteen songs in thirty minutes). It vibes like a Social Distortion tune in keeping with The Fallout’s tie to the 90’s.
The Fallout tick all the boxes for what a punk album typically is – paint by numbers “I’ve heard this somewhere before” tunes, but they do it extremely well. “Can’t Take It” and “Meat of the Matter” open with similar bass lines at different tempos, but that’s the “fuck you” punk rock attitude that you just have to appreciate; can you pogo to it? Slam? Mosh? Absolutely and that’s the essence that a true punk rock die hard is looking for.
Blink your eyes and you’re halfway through the album. “Raise Your Flag” sticks out hard on the second half and shows that The Fallout can also hit with the uplifting brand of protest punk rock. Vocalist/guitarist Byron has just enough edge in his voice to teeter on that line between pop punk and aggro punk and it serves the easy to digest style of The Fallout well. Speaking of vocals, The Fallout make sure to roll out those staple “woah” punk rock backup vocals, particularly poignant on the track “Set Us Up” and “Red Light Union.” Predictable? Yes. Satisfying to the ear? Also yes. It all just comes with the territory, if you’re looking for that familiar 90’s tinged style of punk you’ll have a fucking fantastic time with The Times Have Never Changed… apparently neither have the riffs.
(Bucketlist Music Reviews)
With a mission statement that has them writing ‘songs of unity, inclusion, solidarity and struggle,’ Toronto’s The Fallout has been fighting the good fight since 2004. Come 2020, they still have a lot to get off their chest and they do it in the form of slick punk rock songs that will have you pumping your fists in the air while your brain is working overtime as they make you think about everything from partisan politics to institutionalized homophobia.
Their latest manifesto is called ‘The Times Have Never Changed’ and it is divided into 15 chapters worth of catchy, highly energetic punk rock bangers that harken back to the days of Stiff Little Fingers and the likes. Every revolution needs a soundtrack. Might as well make ‘The Times Have Never Changed’ yours.”
(Punk Rock Theory)
The Fallout from Toronto, Canada are back with „The Times Have Never Changed” it is the new LP since their EP in 2018 „Raise Your Flag and Other Anthems”. There are 15 new tracks with a mix of Anti Flag meet Dead Kennedys, Angelic Upstarts or DOA. The band lyrics are about politics, injustice and day by day issues of the world. Rebel Time Records from Canada and Discos Machete from Mexico made the album possible. Real protest punk rock, melodic and furious in the same time. Passionate and really committed to a lot of their causes, this is a band that keeps in mind RATM quote „doing is the best way of saying”. So for all the crisis that is around the globe, all the protests and racism, this will be the perfect album. The album can be found on Discos Machete, Rebel Time Records and as well on their bandcamp page as pay-what-you-like. They have a first video for the The Time Have Never Changed and you can check Rebel Time Records you tube page for more. My personal favorites: Raise Your Flag (a strong message and a sing along chorus) and One Last Struggle. Resistance, solidarity and unity!!!
The Fallout are something of an institution locally. They describe their music as “straight-up, stripped down political punk” which is pretty apt. I’ve had the pleasure of playing with them a few times over the past couple years and it’s always a treat to see them live. Their lyrics have a way of taking complicated subjects and making them easy to understand, without being preachy, and without sacrificing either the political content of what they’re saying or sacrificing the punk aesthetic/sound. Not an easy task. Coming on the heels of the ‘Raise Your Flag’ EP in 2018, I was excited for this album and wasn’t disappointed in the slightest. Song topics range from women’s rights, the security state, war, sex-workers’ rights, and more. The music is catchy and hits hard; Byron and Pat’s distinct vocal styles work fantastically together, and keep each new track sounding fresh while also helping to form the cohesive ‘The Fallout’ sound. I wish they had put this album out on vinyl, as I’d love a physical copy. Favourite track: ‘Can’t Take It’.
I love The Fallout, and as someone who loves The Fallout I can safely say The Times Have Never Changed might be their best record so far.
In 2018 the band released a 7” EP Raise Your Flag And Other Anthems, their first release since Patty O’Lantern (Class War Kids, Brutal Youth, Dragged In) joined the band. While that EP was absolutely solid, it was only a quick preview of what the band would do on this album.
Patty’s inclusion on this record sees the band adding a welcome pop-punk sensibility to the band’s working class, Clash-influenced sound, and I mean that in the best possible way. As much as I adore The Fallout’s three earlier albums, Patty’s “woah’oh” backing vocals add a completely new, yet familiar dimension to the songs. Almost like if Screeching Weasel went on a massive Clash binge and decided to write some non-reactionary/contrarian political punk anthems.
One of the stand-outs for me is the new version of the Class War Kids song “One Last Struggle”, an almost naively optimistic political punk anthem whose reputation was unfortunately tarnished by the actions and behaviour of Davey “Brat” Zegarek (Fuck That Guy). This new version is every bit as heartfelt and optimistic, but it feels somewhat more poignant than the original.
Other stand-out tracks are “The Times Have Never Changed”, “Meat Of The Matter”, “Wage Slave”, “Red Light Union”, “Raise Your Flag”, “Failure Of Character”, and “Invincible”, a deeply personal tribute to Todd Serious, the late singer for the amazing Vancouver punk band The Rebel Spell. I’ve been a massive fan of The Rebel Spell ever since my first time seeing them at a house show in Kitchener, Ontario in 2007, and I’d be hard-pressed to write an equal or better song about my feelings about Todd and his influence on my life and Canadian punk in general.
(No Productivity zine)