Punk and politics, as a rule, mix well and one of the best crews at that mixture has always been and continues to be Bad Religion. Back with a brand new record in an election year, The Empire Strikes First packs a political punch from the title through almost each song. Frontman Greg Graffin spits his scathing reviews of our countryís current political policy on tracks like the title track, as well as ìLet Them Eat War,î ìGodís Love,î ìSinister Rouge,î and ìAtheist Peace.î Throughout the record, however, the tried and true Bad Religion sound of searing guitars and harmonies galore fill each and every song, like on the first single, ìLos Angeles Is Burning.î Whether featuring driving punk beats or toned down tempo, Bad Religion pack hooks aplenty into their music, and then seal the deal with lyrical content that stimulates the mind, hopefully to the point of social change. The Empire Strikes First is a great record coming out at a great time. Leave it to Bad Religion to fill those holes in our lives. Nothing less could be expected.