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SUBHUMANS- No Wishes, no Prayers LP (SST Records, USA, 1983)

Will take my own snapshots of the cover later. This comes from the band’s official website.
How come this LP by Canaduh’s SUBHUMANS, ‘though released on one of the world’s biggest indie labels, never saw a (official) 2nd pressing? Was it SST’s swing to a more college orientated catalogue from 84 on? Or was it Gerry Hannah’s (the groups original bassist) incriminated political activities, that led to the blow-up of a factory that produced parts for the Cruise Missile (and in which several workers were injured – one would cynically call this “friendly fire” today, I guess)? Hannah claimed, not to be responsible for the actual bombing, but he supported the action and in the end got a 10 years sentence for this and other activities. He spent 5 years of ’em.
As I said, I don’t know the reasons for the small and limited press run of “No Wishes, No Prayers”, on a label who up to this day keeps its releases in print. Maybe some of you know better and care to enlighten us.

However – this is SUBHUMANS best release, in my books. Sure – the “Death to the Sickoids” 7″ was a tuff rocker, the cover art of the untitled 12″ is phantastic, the 2nd 7″ was a bitter-sweet masterpiece and “Incorrect Thoughts” is an atmospheric and jolly good rocking LP.
But “No Wishes, no Prayers” just tops the other ones. Very much comparable to TOXIC REASONS’ “Kill by Remote Control” (recently featured on Good Bad Music), this second full length too captured a very siginificant – call it vibe – and preserves it to this day. And it only works as a whole. It’s practically impossible to pick single songs, saying this is the best or that one. All songs function in one frame. Of course, with the years, you will find your fave songs on “No Wishes, no Prayers”, once you got the feel ffor it. But if this is new to you and if your attention span has become rudimentary from downloading music all day long or having grown up in an MTVied society, then my advice would be to keep hands off of this.
I’ve gotten to know the band after this was released, and “No Wishes, no Prayers” had been very hard to come by in the 80s, when you lived in a fucking dumb in the swiss Voralps, but I remember very well how this LP was particularly enclouded with the aura of radicalism. Bombs, Punk, SST – and this LP, that was a very magic brewery. When I finally found it, I was at first a bit disapointed. I probably expected HARDCORE, you know. Speed, ferocity, anger, brutality. But this was very different, kinda laid back. Calm and tense, melancholic and very introspective. No “bomb this and bomb that” sloganeering, no manuals to become an activist yourself. Although the speed is being kept up to a nice up-beat, whenever I think back of the LP before spinning it, I seem to remember it in an almost MOB (UK)-like slow motion prayer-punk. Now, that I just played it in order to manufacture the rip you’re probably downloading now, I’m surprised on how speedy it is.
That’s the key to the SUBHUMAN’s farewell (in the first round). It’s fast but works like played at slow pace. It’s Punk (or HC, if you prefer), but it’s the swansong. It seems political (cause it comes from a political band), but it’s not so much, it’s maybe more like a warning of getting “too political” (Really Red).

Visit the Subhumans and buy their albums!

Canada’s favourite Sport.mp3
Moron Majority.mp3
For the common Good.mp3
Helicopter.mp3
Slap in the Face.mp3
Screwed up.mp3
America commits Suicide.mp3
Hiroshima.mp3
No Wishes, No Prayers.mp3
Mobile eletric Chair.mp3
Breaking Point.mp3
Googolplex.mp3

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