Can it be true? Homosexuals are just like me and you? San Francisco's 'Queercore' pioneers Pansy Division have been battling stereotypes since 1992...

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CAN IT BE TRUE? HOMOSEXUALS ARE JUST like me and you? San Francisco’s ‘Queercore’ pioneers Pansy Division have been battling stereotypes since 1992, but this, their sixth album, finds them firmly nestled in the indie rock mainstream, dispensing with the shock tactics of songs with titles like ‘For Those About to Suck Cock, We Salute You’.

Here, their affably punky love songs carry a more universal message: the heartbreak of ‘Too Beautiful’, with its gentle Television guitar twang, and the trashy ‘Vicious Beauty’, twisting that ‘Centrefold’, old-flame-discovered-in-porn-mag story – but not too much. Only cheeky lines like, “[I]I believe in love that’s true/But I’m a sucker just like you[/I]” and the story about gay-bashing serve to remind of Pansy Division’s insurrectionary mettle.

The downside is that the commercial nature of this LP finds Pansy Division drifting into generic college rock territory too often. But then maybe that misses the point. If this album ends up in thousands of Bible Belt bedrooms, a few more prejudices might be dismembered.