If youíre in a band right now and you think youíre pathetic at it then do not fear because The Germs are here! The Germsí early attempts were to put it, quite pathetic. On their first 7Ē, the record company put ďWarning: May Cause Ear CancerĒ as the song Forming
was so ridiculously bad. It sounded like some high school bandís demo but none the less it was a stepping stone. On the other side was a live recording of Sex Boy
which sounded like someone recorded it on a microcassette recorder. Through time, the band actually developed a sound that was listenable to people. The band never got much attention until the EP Lexicon Devil whichís main track was of course Lexicon Devil
, a true punk rock song, which was fast and loud. This is the anthology of the band and it takes you through one of L.A.ís most influential hardcore bandís career.
Their career was quite short and the band never really accomplished anything much over the three years they were together. Darby Crash committed suicide by overdosing and Pat Smear would be a touring guitarist for Nirvana 15 years later. This album contains a lot of great, amazing songs but it also contains some really bad ones so itís pretty mixed. I enjoyed a lot of their later songs but their earliest songs make me want to stab my ears. None the less, the purpose of this album is to give a short overview of the bandís career and that is what it does. The band was active during the raid of 77í punk but they were faster and tougher. Darby was the rudest front man at the time, spitting on his audience and drinking and doing drugs. The last song on the album Forming 
is the original track but better recorded and a bit more listenable.
Darby had quite a bad voice but it added to the whole bad boy image. His voice sounds like heís wasted all the time. Pat Smear is a very talented guitarist and his work has inspired people such as Greg Ginn. The drums are a mixed bag, as there is a lot of different drummers on this. The first few tracks, the drums are rubbish but on songs like Lexicon Devil
and Lionís Share
, itís at itís best. The bass is loud and clear but basically plays root notes but since its punk then it doesnít matter at all. If youíre looking for fast punk rock that shows hardcore punk at its beginning then this is essential and youíll definitely enjoy it. Those of you who want perfect production would absolutely hate this because due to the circumstances the band had been through, the production is pretty poor. Darbyís voice sounds horrible on a lot of tracks and there are times where his voice goes loud in the production and then low. The guitars sound fine throughout to me but the drums are weird, some songs the drums are loud and in others you can barely hear them. This is punk rock at itís best, it isnít the most consistent record but still quite good none the less.