Danger to the System (DttS) is a punk band hailing from the Binghamton region of New York, or more specifically the small town of Afton. The band features Alex Loeb on guitar and vocals, Duane Red Bear on drums and backing vocals, and Mike Danger on bass and backing vocals. They are mainly a political band though it is not the focus of all their songs.
The album opens with This Song Holds A Hidden Hope, which is a great introduction to the CD and the band overall. The song opens slowly, but the pace quickens shortly thereafter. Loeb shouts powerful lyrics over palm-muted riffs backed by tight drumming and solid bass lines. The only setback for this song, and many others on here, is how low the bass is in the mix. The first track ends abruptly and moves right into Now I'm Gone. This song has some more catchy riffs and drumming like the previous song, however Loeb's vocals here are cleaner with less edge to them.
The third song off the album, Bill of Rights, gets in the listener's face right from the start. Featuring explicit shouted vocals, this song shows that DttS straddles the line between catchy songwriting and aggressive punk rock, and they do it well. The song chugs along during verses and explodes at each chorus, pounding the band"s sentiments into the listener. At roughly 1 min and 25 seconds, Loeb erupts with a short solo lick that has an almost metal tinge to it. The next song, Broken, features powerful background vocals behind Loeb during each chorus, with some nice gang vocals coming in before the end.
Lending a Helping Hand starts off with a few struck power chords before taking off with the drums. After Loeb shouts "We could have saved you from this hell!" one of the catchiest guitar riffs on the CD comes in. Selling Out and Buying In is another fast paced DttS song, featuring quotes from Anti-Flag and Against Me! Gang vocals make an appearance again during the chorus of this song. The next song is very unique, especially when compared to all the previous songs on the disc thus far. Set, Ready, Go! makes a great change of pace, slowing things down for once. This is the first song where the bass has a little prominence, mainly during the verses which feature simple yet effective drumming from Red Bear, Danger's bass, and only a few power chords played by Loeb. It keeps things fresh and turns out to be a very powerful song, definitely one of the key tracks of the album.
After the previous song slowed things down, The Most We Need slows things down even further and ditches the distortion. It contains clean guitar chords and vocals, along with an eminence of backing vocals. It's a song about the band's love for touring and playing music. It"s a stripped-down but great song, one sure to get a crowd involved in singing along. Bump n' Grind picks things back up and gets things moving again. It also clocks in as the longest track on the disc. It's not a bad song by any means but unfortunately it doesn't stand out too much against the rest of the songs on here.
Following the longest track on the album, the next comes in as the shortest. Not Even Close clocks in less than two minutes in length. Like the previous song, this one is a little bland and doesn't stand out much either. Just when it looks like the album is going to have a weak finish, one of the main highlights of the disc comes in. Sacrifice opens with a nice slow lead over chugging palm-muted chords. There is some great riffing in this song and the chorus has some very catchy vocals dealing with war. The last two tracks on the album are covers of Woody Guthrie's I Ain't Got No Home and John Lennon's Imagine. They are both solid covers, but they pale a little in comparison to the original music on here.
Beware the Military Industrial Complex is a great punk CD. It"s raw, aggressive, and catchy when it needs to be. The average song length is just under 3 minutes and there"s a lot of energy on here. The band has worked very hard from their humble beginnings and this album shows amazing potential. Fans of punk should check into this band, and those in New York and the surrounding areas should check out their energetic and cathartic live show.