What a Time to Be Alive

Early press releases touted 2018’s What a Time to Be Alive as a revved up, fuzz-pedaled blast of a backhand to the nation’s current divisive political landscape. Superchunk’s sound here is as emboldened and vital as ever. The title track zooms from zero to infinity with its chorus of loud, joyous guitars contradicting its pressing lyrical concern (“To see the rot in no disguise/Oh what a time to be alive/The scum, the shame, the fucking lies/Oh what a time to be alive”). “Lost My Brain” and “Break the Glass” follow, surrendering to the breakneck pace recalling the intensity of the band’s early career high-water marks some 25 years ago (No Pocky for Kitty, On the Mouth). Age has only given the band more tools and confidence for world domination. Perhaps the best 33 minutes you’ll spend with any record this year.