Loading...
Punk

The Bad Religion Album Everyone Hated

Comments (0)

By

Mon, Nov 25, 2013 at 4:00 AM

click to enlarge into_the_unknown_cover.jpg
Thirty years ago this month, Bad Religion released Into The Unknown, their follow-up to their blistering 1982 debut How Could Hell Be Any Worse?

Their first work was pure punk rock, focused on political and social issues.

Into The Unknown was...something totally different, a musically-ambitious prog-rock album loaded with synthesizers and guitar solos that were less "punk" than "something you might hear on a Boston record."

Even the album cover was weird -- a sort of tranquil outer space setting. Whereas the cover of their debut, a stark photo of downtown L.A., implied something gritty, this seemed to imply....science fiction?

Top 20 Punk Albums in History

Their fans didn't know what to think. It seemed to be almost universally rejected; the legend was that of the 10,000 copies originally shipped, almost all were returned.

The stress even caused the group to briefly disband.

Even to this day, the album has never been officially issued on CD. In fact, it's been pretty much ignored by the group completely, save for its vinyl reissue as part of a 2010 box set of their whole catalog, and the performance of one of its songs at a New York City show that same year.

(They've been mum about this work for years, and declined my interview request to discuss it, despite the fact that leader Greg Graffin is generally game to chat.)

Personally, I'd been a fan of Bad Religion since I was a teen. But I still went a long time without hearing the album. And none of the numerous Bad Religion fans I met over the years had either.

And so, a few years back I decided to take matters into my own hands. I downloaded the work from Mediafire or one of those and actually listened to the damn thing.

I thought: "How bad could it be?"

Related Content

Now Trending

  • The 10 Best Rock 'n' Roll Pinball Machines

    I am a devoted video-game fan and a constant cheerleader for them to be considered art, but honestly I would give up most of the compelling stories and high-definition graphics in the world for the simple pinball machines. They're crafted and mechanical, and when done with a loving hand can...
  • Fanatics! Rock the Omar

    RADIO BROADCAST #279 08–03–14 Fanatics! Good radio is what it’s all about on this show and tonight, we again deliver the goods. You will notice the slightest of concepts here as we rock Omar Souleyman on both hours. He will be in LA on Sunday night. I will be interviewing...
  • Party Picks of the Week: Jarvis Cocker Alert!

    Summer fun is burning hot about now with a slew of big bashes, many of them marking the not-so-timid Leo birthday contingent. Here, the best of the batch, kicking off what is sure to be an action-packed August. Party with ninjas: Studio 69’s Pirates vs. Ninjas dance and dress-up affair is always...
Los Angeles Concert Tickets

Slideshows