Wipers - Youth of America LP
(Park Avenue Records, 1981 - Jackpot Records, 2007)
Youth of America is the 1981 follow-up to Wipers’ legendary debut, Is this Real?, a record which had already placed the band at the forefront of the next wave of punk bands to come in the 1980’s. With their sophomore album Wipers continued to show that punk was as much about an ethos as it was a sound. Possibly as a reaction to their debut (and the “punk” label that singer Greg Sage did not willingly accept) Youth of America stretches out Wipers’ anthemic and economical delivery (with more than one track clocking over 6 minutes) and recurring excursions into underexplored sonic territory that many other bands at the time wouldn’t go anywhere near, all the while maintaining a fierce edge that many other faster, more aggressive bands couldn’t achieve in their wildest fever dreams.
Wipers’ influence can be seen all over some of the best bands of the later 80’s and early 90’s. They may not have ‘fit in’ in their time and place, but they managed to do what only the greatest bands can do, they maintained their purpose and individuality. Now, years later, they’ve been cited as a major influence on Nirvana, Sonic Youth, Mudhoney, Dinosaur Jr., Nation of Ulysses, The Melvins, and countless others.