Bad Religion
No Control



by Dwayne_Pearce USER (3 Reviews)
November 20th, 2005 | 44 replies

Release Date: 1989 | Tracklist

No Control is one of the best punk albums ever released. I know that's a huge call to make when the genre of music covers such a broad spectrum, but put simply that's the only way No Control can be described. The year before this album was released, Bad Religion released what was described by Fat Mike of NOFX as "the album that changed it all" Suffer. This album gave birth to countless imitators, but none as good as Bad Religion. To follow Suffer, Bad Religion would have release their greatest work to date, as well as their fastest and most furious. No Control includes it all, the speed of the drums, the vocal melodies, and the trade mark buzz saw guitars, and everything else that made Suffer so great.

Bad Religion (at the time of this album):
Vocals- Greg Graffin
Lead Guitar- Mr Brett
Rhythm Guitar- Greg Hetson
Bass- Jay Bentley
Drums- Pete Finestone

Change Of Ideas (0:55): The banging of the drums, begins this album, and the listener is thrown straight into the furious sound of Change Of Ideas. Clocking in at under a minute, many would wonder how this time frame could contain a song. This is answered, as the song contains all the makings of a good song, killer melodies, a good beat, and a great chorus. This song is an average Bad Religion song, but is still a great song. The vocals during the song are great, and the guitars and bass work together well. (4/5)

Big Bang (1:42): Straight of the gate, Big Bang begins with a crunching guitar riff, as well the traditional punk drums. This song contains awesome vocals, as well some drum rolls that differ form the standard style, although they only occur occasionally. During the song, the key changes, and this shows listeners Bad Religion aren't just your run of the mill punk band. This song is one of Bad Religions best known songs and it's easy to see why. Recommended listening for any punk fan. (5/5)

No Control (1:47): This song starts with the similar drum beat that all punk fans are used to, but changes during the verses. The chorus to this song contains some great vocal melodies that mix in well the guitars. Towards the end of the song, the song slows down to a drum roll, then straight after this bursts straight back into a chorus, and some great vocal melodies present themselves to the listener. (4/5)

Sometimes I Feel Like (1:34): Again, this song starts straight away, no time to slow down seems to be the mentality so far. The guitar effects that are used during this song work well to disorientate the listener, and leave your head spinning. The furious tempo of the guitars and drums are great, as they lead toward a great guitar solo, that although it's simple, it heightens the song. The song ends after the return of the guitar effects, and marks the beginning of the next song. (4/5)

Automatic Man (1:40): This song has been different to the others, as a small guitar intro is used; then again the song starts with the drums, the bass, and vocals. A killer high riff is used before the chorus, and during the choruses, vocal harmonies are used to great effect. The ending of this song contains some great vocal work, as the singer sounds urgent, and trying to stress a point. The song ends with a solitary guitar note that is sustained, then the band jump in f or one last chorus. (4/5)

I Want To Conquer The World (2:17): The lead riff that opens this song is one of the greatest ever written by Bad Religion, and some may argue in punk music in general. This song begins ferociously and all instruments work together to keep up the energy. The vocals are again a stand out, and allow the song to feel passionate and not just empty and run of the mill like so many other punk songs. The lyrics in this song are my personal favourite of the album, as well as the rest of the song itself. A classic punk rock song. (5/5)

Sanity (2:45): the longest track on the album opens with a classic punk rock count in. This song is a lot slower than the others, and is a welcome change, to slow down things, although just for a second. The mid tempo song contains a great building riff, with an obscure lead riff that is present during parts of the song. The vocal harmonies present in the pre-chorus are once again flawless, and add a new dimension to the song. The ending of the song contains vocal harmonies once again, and a high lead riff is again apparent. A great song to show some diversity. (5/5)

Henchman (1:07): Vocals start this song of with a bang, and the guitars chug along with the bass, and although the drums are fast a different drum opens the song up. At 0:36 seconds, the classic punk drum beat returns to great effect, and really brings out the best in the song, as well as this vocal harmonies return to end the song. The song ends on a fast riff like many of the other songs, but is still fresh in its delivery. (4/5)

It Must Look Pretty Appealing (1:22): This song opens up with some sustained notes on the guitar while the bass and drums hold down the rhythm. To begin the verse a slide on the guitar is used to great effect and begins the frantic pace that the band is used to showing on the other tracks. The lyrics in this song are great, and are once again complemented by a great vocal delivery. Great ending to the song. (4/5)

You (2:05): The bass riff in this song has a different rhythm to the guitar that is backing it, and is a cool new direction for the otherwise subdued bass sound. This song contains great lyrics and vocals, as well as some great harmonies that really bring out the power of this track. Another of Bad Religion's more known songs, and is still a live favourite. The ending of this song deceives the listener, and sets the tone for the next track. Another highlight from this great album. (5/5)

Progress (2:14): The slow riff backed by the steady drums mark the beginning of this track, and after some notes are held, the instruments re-enter at a fast pace, and burst into the verse of the song. This song has awesome lyrics, and seems to fly along at a fast pace, but is also still very controlled. The end of the song once again marks the use of vocal harmonising, and brings the listener full circle to end the song. A personal favourite. (5/5)

I Want Something More ():47): Another fast count in starts this song. The bass stands out well in this song and present a different look at the skills of the bassist. Although the song is the shortest on the album, two verses and a chorus are present, as well as a big ending. However this is not a highlight as it passes to quickly to sink in. (3/5)

Anxiety (2:08): To start things off, another chugging bass riff is used, and the guitar hits some high notes. The chorus is a change from the rest of the song, and slows down towards the end, and then begins the next verse. A key change is used after the second chorus, and then some of the best vocal harmonies of the album soar over one of the most heartfelt solos I have ever heard in punk music, after this another chorus is played and the song fades to nothing after saying what it has to say. A great song, and one of my favourites. (5/5)

Billy (1:54): This song is very similar to others that are on the album, but the introduction separate from some of the others. I feel that nothing much can be said about this song, as it is pretty similar to most of the other songs on this album. However during some of the verse, vocal harmonies are awesome, and the use of the high guitar riff towards the end of the song. (3.5/5)

The World Won't Stop (1:57): The bass that opens this song is great, and the drums support it very well, the guitar for once is subdued, as the listener tries to place their head around the bass riff that is presented to them, although not as great some other punk bass riffs that are around, the riff is a fresh change for the use of the bass. The vocals are very urgent and forced upon the listener in this track, but are very reminiscent of the other tracks. The fading of the instruments at the end of the song is a nice touch, as it ends the song strongly, and closes the album with listeners wanting more. (4.5/5)

Finishing at just over 26 minutes, the listener may need a few more listens to let the scope of this album sink in. Throughout the course of the album many political and social questions are posed by Bad Religion, and listeners will need time to answer them all. Although this album is over 15 years old, it is still as relevant and as powerful as it was when it was released all those years ago. I urge you to purchase this if it is not in your album collection. Definitely one for all the punk fans out there.

Final Rating 4.5/5

user ratings (1000)
other reviews of this album
tom79 (4.5)

Wolfe (4.5)
What the world would be like if we had no control?...

Comments:Add a Comment 
November 21st 2005


great album, not their best, but its got "you" on it which alone is reason enough to go get it NOW if you haven't got it already!

November 21st 2005


oh, good review too!

November 21st 2005


Album Rating: 5.0

thanks for the comments, it was my second review i'm glad it was an enjoyable read

November 25th 2005


Album Rating: 5.0

Yeah, this is one of my "deserted island" records. This album blew my mind open to so much in music AND life... my first exposure to The Relidge, and BR's best IMO, and more consistent than ATG (debatable for sure, but that's my opinion). I Want To Conquer The World, Automatic Man, You, Billy (great lyrics!), and Henchman are some of the greatest punk songs ever written by any band...

December 25th 2005


I bet you're a pr0n star, Big Bang.

January 27th 2006


Which would be a better first buy, Suffer or NO Control?

January 28th 2006


Album Rating: 5.0

Suffer has better singing and clearer production, as well as some of BR's best songs, but No Control is faster, harder, and has more classic songs on it, like "Change Of Ideas", "Big Bang", "Automatic Man", "I Want To Conquer The World", "You"... it's just great. Totally solid album all the way through, whereas IMO Suffer kinda blends together at times...

Times Ten
January 29th 2006


This album is pure kick a'ss. Not a bad song on it.This Message Edited On 01.28.06

February 18th 2006


Album Rating: 4.5

just got this a week ago and its awesome. i love this cd along with suffer. i have to get against the grain soon too cuz i've heard its one of their best.

February 18th 2006


Album Rating: 5.0

ATG is clutch, dude... think Suffer's clearer singing but better overall production, more melody, and more aggression than No Control. The last 1/3 of it kinda blends a bit, but "Walk Away" is one of the best BR end songs hands-down.

guitar, bass, sax
February 28th 2006


I don't think the song "Henchman" gets nearly enough credit. It's a definate 5/5 for me.

March 1st 2006


Album Rating: 5.0

And that shows your ignorance. Modern punk rock was partially invented by Suffer, No Control, and Against The Grain, but you wouldn't know that since you were like 3 when they came out. And IMO Bad Religion shats on Black Flag... yes you read that right.This Message Edited On 03.01.06

Mike Rakhabit
March 24th 2006


The best Bad Religion album ever released. Great album all songs are awesome, highlights are Big Bang, I Want to Conquer the World and No Control.

June 4th 2006


Easily one of my top 5 albums of all time, and without a doubt Bad Religion's best. Suffer is good, but it gets very samey.

August 8th 2006


Album Rating: 4.5

The beginning of You and Big Bang sound the exact same.

Overall, amazing album.

Two-Headed Boy
October 31st 2006


Album Rating: 4.5

This is their best album by far.

January 15th 2007


Album Rating: 5.0

I want to conquer the world is one of the greatest songs they've ever written.

January 21st 2007


Album Rating: 4.5

their best album, and the best tracks imho are You, No Control and Anxiety

July 5th 2007


Album Rating: 4.0

Classic punk album.

July 18th 2007


Album Rating: 5.0

I might give a slight edge to suffer, but at this point its really just a small matter of taste. Both of these albums and Against the Grain are in the upper escalon of modern punk rock both in terms of musicianship and influence.

Absolute classics.This Message Edited On 07.18.07

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