Generalissimo, Love Without Mercy

Generalissimo is anything but understated. The Oakland post-punk group, whose name refers to the highest authoritarian rank, describes Love Without Mercy as a "kinder, gentler" record. More melodic than the band's previous releases, its message is no less overt. Radical statism, adorned with brutalist aesthetics, is the name of the game. The members perform in outfits worthy of a stiff salute. (self-released)

Will Butler