Two years ago, I watched the Richmond, Virginia punk-metal thrashers Iron Reagan play an outdoor picnic pavilion just outside of their hometown. This was at Gwar-B-Q, a festival dedicated entirely to the hometown joke-metal heroes. But on a bill with bands like Gwar, the Misfits, Body Count, and Hatebreed, I didn’t see anyone get a crazier crowd reaction than Iron Reagan. It was fucking nuts out there — people hanging upside down from support beams, piling all over each other, transforming into one sweaty and red-faced mass. It looked more like a football dogpile than a festival set. It was beautiful.
Iron Reagan — whose members have played in fellow Richmond metal bands like Municipal Waste and Darkest Hour — play a revved-up take on the ’80s crossover sound, the one where speed metal and hardcore merged into one giddy and pummeling skateboard soundtrack. They play it with fervor and commitment and a sense of fun. And early next year, they’ll release their sophomore album Crossover Ministry. We’ve already posted the early track “A Dying World,” and right now, you can hear the new song “Grim Business,” a total joyous blast of fury. Check it out below.
Iron Reagan will open for DC hardcore legends Dag Nasty 12/27 at Asbury Park’s Stone Pony and 12/28 at Baltimore’s Baltimore Soundstage. Crossover Ministry is out 1/28/17 on Relapse; you can pre-order the physical edition here and the digital edition here.