Music discussions shape our sense of time in a very different way. You can talk for hours it seems about an album that lasts 30 minutes (or less), and you won’t waste any of your saliva talking about careers made through decades, just because the artist or the band didn’t catch your attention enough for you to listen to them. In the case of Henry Rollins, it is almost naive if you’re not attracted, even to some degree, by several aspects of his personality, along with him being fully active -not only regarding music, of course-, whilst has participated in dozens of albums. After Black Flag, Rollins created 2 wonderful albums under the name Rollins Band. Albums that was full of intensity, anger and energy that sprouted from his inner rage, his experience of street life and the aggression of his cynicism. As a distillation of his experience and clinical treatment, Rollins created music in need for a cure to his tortured soul it seems. The way that he expresses this, on this particular occasion, 30 years ago, the year 1989 in particular, doesn’t have much in common with Black Flag, except the track ‘I Feel Like This’, perhaps. The album’s first side sounds more normal and conventional in terms of writing, with jazz and hardcore elements mixed with some blues parts, some hard rock riffage, and a creeping grunge atmosphere fused with vocals that sound like he’s pretty desperate. B side seems more out of the box, more experimental as well, sticking to simplicity though through minimalistic sounds, Rollins seems eager to wash away his inner demons, screaming at them whilst trying to stay above water in an ocean full of personal struggles (?). His gut-wrenching vocals prove to be perfect fit for the aggressive guitars, making these well-written compositions a great performance as a whole from the band, whilst “Hard Volume” takes it’s place as the second great album (after the 1987 debut “Life Times”, with both albums being pretty close stylistically) in a row that it is, with the momentum both albums carry being more than enough to make history. That being said, proof of Rollin’s personal triumph are songs like ‘What Have I Got’, ‘Turned Inside Out’ and, of course, the 32-minute epic ‘Joy Riding with Frank’, being in fact a jam of Velvet Underground’s outtake entitled ‘Move Right In’. Last but not least, the ode to obsessive love that is ‘Love Song’, an adumbration of one’s disturbed and erratic mentality after his romance has been turned down, with its simple and honest lyrics. “Hard Volume” stands tall and ageless amongst Rollin’s discography, the perfect alter ego for “Damaged”, probably. Not musically exactly, but if you could imagine one as the other’s continuance, in terms of aisthetics and lyrics, as Henry tries to break any remnants from the mirror on “Damaged” cover, struggling with his personal demons still, making it so that they are left behind every time the needle touches the LP version of this particular record.