Throughout my life, I’ve had the pleasure of encountering a number of people who have loved Tim Armstrong and Rancid immensely, and those folks were most often the coolest, most sincere and loving folks I’ve ever met. And as I’ve gotten older, I see what those folks have loved so immensely about Rancid – much like their fans, Rancid’s material is earnest and comes from a very real, lived-in place.
It’s been five years since there’s been any new Rancid new material, so their forthcoming eighth full-length effort, Honor Is All We Know will be much-anticipated by their fans. (I had told a dear friend, who has loved Tim Armstrong since his early days in Operation Ivy that I had come across some new Rancid, and her response was “How dare you hold back on me with this?” So I can imagine several other Rancid fans being the same way.)
Produced by Epitaph Records CEO and Bad Religion guitarist Brett Gurewitz, Honor Is All We Know reportedly is comprised of some of the band’s most insightful and introspective material to date, which should be expected from a group of men who have been in music for quite some time and have struggled and scrapped to get where they are today. To build up buzz for the new album, the band released a video comprised of three songs from the album – “Collision Course,” album title track, “Honor Is All We Know” and “Evil’s My Friend” – and from those three tracks, the material is a forceful return to form, displaying their love of gritty, thrashing power chord punk and riddim-based ska. I couldn’t help but think of their self-titled album and of … And Out Come the Wolves. In some way, the band is proudly and defiantly saying “we will not good into that good night, softly;” in fact, they seem to be the sorts that will roar, stomp, fight and love until the day they die.