Possessing few peers in the world of fiery, angular, angry indie-rock, D.C. icon Fugazi holds an unassailable place at or near the top of the DIY aesthetic. THE ARGUMENT, their eighth full-length release, still exhibits the unpredictability of form, jagged edges and impassioned, potent lyrics that carried them through the '90s. However, with its underlying melodic hooks, it hearkens back more to early-'80s art punks like Mission Of Burma or The Fall. On tracks like "Full Disclosure" the sound looks even further back, sounding practically glam.
Despite the element of retrograde, the sound on THE ARGUMENT remains undeniably Fugazi's own, organic and compelling. There is certainly the occasional track, most notably "Ex-Spectator," that would fit seamlessly on MARGIN WALKER or REPEATER, and tracks such as the defiant "Cashout" and "Epic Problem" rant and rage with requisite fury. On the other end of the spectrum is the title track, unadulterated indie-pop practically out of the songbook of a band like Sloan.