Iron Cross - Live For Now
Posted Jan 31, 2011, by The Bear.
Forming in Washington D.C. in 1981, not long after Minor Threat, Iron Cross is often considered the first American Oi! Punk band. Certainly some years ago when a tribute compilation album came out where a lot of American bands paid tribute to a lot of the early British Oi! bands by covering their songs, the Business, one of the main founders of British Oi! paid the tribute back at the end of the record with a “re-tribute” by covering one of Iron Cross’ songs. That’s quite a big deal coming from a band like the Business.
Iron Cross still performs on occasion. I was fortunate enough to see them at CBGBs at the Agnostic Front 20th anniversary show in December of 2002. Even after more than 20 years they still knew how to get a crowd going.
This record, Live For Now, is actually a compilation of all of their seven inch records and comp. tracks that make up their early discography, and these tracks were very influential in the early American Hardcore scene. Track 6, “Crucified For Your Sins,” is their best known song; everyone covers it, especially Agnostic Front who have turned it into a mainstay of their shows. There are, however, gems all over this album. Other classic tracks include “New Breed,” “Wargames,” “Teenage Violators,” “Live For Now,” “Fight ‘Em All,” “Wolfpack,” and “You’re a Rebel.” Actually all the tracks are good. This is very raw, primitive hardcore / oi! punk which is guaranteed to make you want to get up, mosh around, and break things, just as Punk should.
For the record, despite its name Iron Cross is not a Nazi skinhead band. Sab Grey, the leader of the group, addresses this in the album liner notes but it’s worth emphasizing this because people often make that mistake.