Review: Moral Crux

Moral Crux
“Pop Culture Assassins”
(Panic Button)

There aren’t many bands that can boast both a two-decade career and relative anonymity.  Such is the case of, Moral Crux, for better or for worse.  Combining the politically charged messages of Propaghandi with the pop-punk stylings of The Vandals and the Queers, “Pop Culture Assassins” serves up thirteen tracks of passably catchy tunes.  While the sentiments found on “American Nightmare”, “This American nightmare isn’t a dream / I can’t believe a single thing I see / You’re 401 KO’d, the HMO said no / Forgotten and alone semi suburban ghetto” aren’t exactly going to incite a middle class riot, they’re not entirely forgettable.  After they get recycled about eight times within the track however, they get a little tedious.  Such is the case with virtually every song on the album, as whatever life there is inside of each track is eventually sucked into the bog of repetitiveness.  Bassist Jeff Jenkins can really play and his ability to alter a seemingly basic rhythm section into a tactile web of sound gives each track a slightly longer shelf-life than it would have otherwise had.  Still, there’s not a lot of originality on “Pop Culture”, which is rather shocking considering how long they’re been around.  Maybe it’s a case of Youth Brigades’ mantra, “Old punks don’t die, they just cash in.”  Or something like that.