490. God Rules – Undercover

GOD RULES! (1983)


Before the dark, aggressive and haunting sounds of Branded, Forum and Devotion there was once this happy little new wave/punk band from Orange County California. They rocked and popped and ska’d their way into more tape decks than most of their contemporaries. They seemed to play every Saturday night somewhere ion the OC and everyone I knew would be there.

After their debut actually made money Undercover came out with what remains my personal favorite Undercover album even though I realize there are several significantly stronger albums that will be listed later. But I graduated High School in 1983 and God Rules came out at the same time and was my official Summer Before College album.

The album mixed keyboard driven pop/new wave and a few pretty aggressive slam punk songs, especially the title track. There was even a new wave version of the youth group ditty “I Am The Resurrection” It seemed so radical in 1983…and it’s still fun nearly 30 years later!

I also believe that, by far, this album contains the strongest vocals from Bill Walden. Bill was lead singer for Undercover for the first three projects before leaving and being replaced by Sim Wilson. Their vocal stylings could not be anymore different and considering the direction the band took later Bill’s departure was probably best. I should note that after leaving Bill did do one project with a new band called Fourth Watch that was quite good and deserves to be tracked down and owned by any fans of the early 80’s Christian Music scene.

  1. Brian
    October 16, 2010 at 2:33 pm

    GOD Rules
    Enough said

  2. azjesusmusic
    November 8, 2010 at 6:22 pm

    Sorry, this album is way too low. This was revolutionary. I believe it was their best as well.

  3. November 14, 2010 at 5:45 pm

    I never heard it until way after the hype, but even without hearing it, my Jr. High mind knew “God Rules!” was the start of a movement.

    One odd memory still lingers. My school jazz band played in a competition at Loara Jr. High. I saw all the half ripped posters advertising the Undercover show that was in that room the night before. I remember lamenting to nobody in particular that I wished our competition had been held a day earlier as if that would have guaranteed a chance to slam dance.

  4. Greenchili
    May 6, 2011 at 5:26 am

    Yeah I think new wave/punk/ska about sums this album up.. lol.

  5. Doug Merkley
    February 13, 2014 at 1:42 pm

    This is an awesome album, I was lucky enough to see them in Canada in the 80’s. I do love their newer stuff even better though.

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