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Wipers - Is this Real?

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Guitarist Greg Sage was a guru of sorts to a generation of budding grungesters, and this 1980 debut from his archetypal power trio leaves little doubt as to why. It's not difficult to see the impact the Wipers had on bands like Nirvana, what with the carefully restrained power that exudes from the grooves of songs like "Return of the Rat." Sage's introspective yet incensed lyrics likewise became the template for Northwest rockers to come, and while this disc is probably the band's most straightforward, tracks like "Tragedy" and "Alien Boy" serve notice that weirdness aplenty is on the horizon. --David Sprague