In Nomine Patri

Image of Alternative - In Nomine Patri
Record Label
Crass Records

About this item

Alternative were a Scottish anarcho-punk band of the early 80s that often drew comparison to Crass for their black attires, logos, firm political beliefs, as well as having their own open house, “The Pad”, where like-minded radicals would join and discuss ideas surrounding pacifism and anti-nuclear armament. The ‘In Nomine Patri’ EP is dark, furious, and articulate.

Penny continues; “Largely through their fierce commitment to ‘changing the world’, Alternative were often referred to as the Scottish Crass. Knowing that talking the talk could only be a half of it, Alternative resolutely walked the walk. Based in Dunfermline, they set up The Pad, an autonomy centre where, over tea and buns, revolutionary visions of peace and love could fester and grow. Theirs was a studied and often poetic form of anarchy which concentrated on people not power. Their interest was not in themselves, but in others. They knew all too well that the only way forward was to do it yourself, and that’s precisely what they did, a’plenty. After all these years, give ‘em your ears.”

Penny finally notes that “Our (Crass’) interest was never in personalities, profits or power, and neither did we have time for reformist liberals. Our position was solidly revolutionary; we took no prisoners. Ours wasn’t a show, it was a battle, not a living, but a lifestyle, a lifestyle with a difference – rather than looking only to ourselves, we sought to share our gains. I feel that this willingness added great strength to the form of anarchism that we practiced both on stage and out on the street.”

In giving a platform to an impressive array of other bands, Crass Records broadened the front of what popularly became known as anarcho-punk. Not, it must be said, a moniker that Crass themselves much favoured. In this respect, Crass’ classic line, “There is no authority but yourself”, makes its point. Crass sought to empower others, and the output of Crass Records does much to confirm this, while ‘2 By 2 And Back Again’ seems to nail it – “get out of your own way, we’re all in this together”.

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