If you're a fan of hardcore, there probably isn't a better day of the year to dig through your music collection and pull out all of the best tracks of American discontent. You can dig up a few tracks by MDC, perhaps some Agnostic Front, or you can make things easy on yourself and just listen to My America by the Boston's F.U.'s. It's brilliant, full of critical thinking, and it's over in less than 16 minutes.


My America was released in 1983, a year after the equally good Kill For Christ LP*. Boston hardcore was so hot at this time, boasting the highly influential compilation This Is Boston, Not L.A. which featured The Proletariat, The Freeze, Jerry's Kids, Gang Green and The F.U.'s. Other important bands to come out of Boston around this time were SS Decontrol, Negative FX and DYS. I can't even imagine being able to see all of these bands play live in the early 1980s.

Sarcastic patriotic lyrics and a goofy cover of Grand Funk Railroad's "We're an American Band" caused scene police to label the F.U.'s as right wing nationalists, but those were just people not in on the joke. The Dead Milkmen referenced them shortly afterward in the song "Tiny Town." A year later the F.U.'s adopted a more metal sound and released another LP, but I'm not really familiar with it. I like my hardcore bands to sound like hardcore bands.

Happy 4th of July! America: like it or lump it!

*I use LP liberally, these 45 rpm 12" records tend to zoom right by.