Local Wire

NoMeansNo

American fans may have left this early-'80s Canadian postpunk originator for dead, but the band's cult in Europe hasn't waned, and it remains hallowed up north. NoMeansNo still tours annually in Europe, but it's been nearly six years since the band released a record. So maybe it's the nonexistent expectations, but the group's 14th album, All Roads Lead to Ausfahrt, is largely a triumph. There's more of that stuttering, stomping artcore, slowly twirling on a dime, with acrobatic drumming that never gets too mathy and songs that are oddly majestic ("In Her Eyes"), dopey funny ("I See a Mansion in the Sky") and seriously ticked off ("Ashes," "Wake Up"). All Roads is a timely reminder that NoMeansNo was equal in intensity and creation to its recently reexamined peers in the Minutemen or Mission of Burma.
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Eric Davidson