So why is The Suicide Machines’ War Profiteering Is Killing Us All on this best 1,000 albums ever thing?
The Suicide Machines have produced lots of loud and intense music over their career, but War Profiteering Is Killing Us All is their angriest album to date.
It’s a righteous anger and a focused anger, and it drives an album that is powerful, well crafted, consistently strong, and fierce.
It’s also heavy at times. For example, there’s a section near the end of “Capsule (AKA Requiem for the Stupid Human Race)” (and if that song title – along with the album title – ain’t giving you a clue about what’s going down here, I’m not sure what to tell you) that is one of the heaviest, thrash-iest hardcore punk sequences that I’ve ever experienced in my life.
The Suicide Machines have long been adept at toggling between upbeat ska punk to melodic punk and alternative rock to deep level hardcore raucous riot rock, and that skill is put to fine use throughout War Profiteering Is Killing Us All.
Which is to say that if the entire album got down like the final section of “Capsule (AKA Requiem for the Stupid Race),” I’m pretty sure a wormhole would open up somewhere on the Earth’s surface – likely somewhere in or near the Mariana Trench. The Suicide Machines know how to change up the sound to keep things both groovy and spicy.
Thankfully, we also get the jangle-y upbeat ska punk of “Hands Tied” to help leaven the heavy vibe. And songs like “95% of the World Is Third World” are an admirable, clever gambit to get its listeners to open up their minds to what’s (really) going on outside of the U.S., while also managing to be a super catchy, melodic punk rock tune at the same time.
“17% 18-25” is a caustic call out to the miniscule percentage of young people who voted in the 2004 U.S. presidential election. More on this below, but there’s actually some great news here in that election participation has gone up dramatically, and especially with young people, in recent U.S. elections.
Turns out that people started to realize that elections matter. A lot.
“Capitalist Suicide” as song title speaks for itself, so I just want to point out that The Suicide Machines are outstanding melodic punk rock craftsmen and also consistently deliver fantastic vocal performances.
Personal stuff that has something to do with War Profiteering Is Killing Us
Something clicked for me when I revisited War Profiteering Is Killing Us All, when I recalled that it was released in 2005.
The politics in the U.S. are so strange these days – they took a drastic turn in 2016 and have remained so if you’re just tuning in now – that it took me a little time to reorient to what was going on in 2005. In short, the country was still in a post-9/11 freakout, we were embroiled in in an unpopular war in Iraq, and George W. Bush managed to win a reelection campaign against John Kerry in November 2004*.
* As of 2023, this was the last time a Republican candidate for president beat the Democratic opponent in the popular vote (with only one razor-thin Electoral College victory in 2016).
9/11 had its own effects on me in a few important ways. I applied to work for the Foreign Service, for one. I passed the written exam and was preparing for the next round of group and in person interviews when my girlfriend (now wife) and I figured out that our career paths would not jive very well if I was to continue in this direction. So I backed out, and sometimes think about what might have been had I gotten and taken the gig.
After the election of 2004, I had an even stronger sense that I had to take some kind of action. And I think my love of writing – which had taken various forms up until that point – collided with my obsession with digital media, and I started blogging.
That act, that process, and that practice – which continues to this day, as you can see – had a more profound impact on my career and my life than any of my prior education and, in many respects, any other job I had taken on up until that point.
Some stats & info about The Suicide Machines – War Profiteering Is Killing Us All
- What kind of musical stylings does this album represent? Rock Music, Alterative Rock, Punk Rock, Ska Punk, Third Wave Ska Revival, Detroit Bands, Pop Punk
- Rolling Stone’s greatest 500 albums ranking – not ranked!
- All Music’s rating – 4.5 out of 5 stars
- When was War Profiteering Is Killing Us All released? 2005
- My ranking, the one you’re reading right now – #413 out of 1,000
The Suicide Machines’ War Profiteering Is Killing Us All on Spotify
A lyrical snippet from The Suicide Machines’ War Profiteering Is Killing Us All that’s evocative of the album in some way, maybe
Take a look around you, you might not like what you see. Yeah, we’re all comfortably living in a privileged society.
What does the “best 1,000 albums ever” mean and why are you doing this?
Yeah, I know it’s audacious, a little crazy (okay, maybe a lot cray cray), bordering on criminal nerdery.
But here’s what it’s NOT: a definitive list of the Greatest Albums of All-Time. This is 100% my own personal super biased, incredibly subjective review of what my top 1,000 albums are, ranked in painstaking order over the course of doing research for nearly a year, Rob from High Fidelity style. Find out more about why I embarked on a best 1,000 albums ever project.