BAD RELIGION • The Gray Race (Remastered) • LP
In 1994, Bad Religion made a move to the major label Atlantic Records because Brett Gurewitz and Jay Bentley were heavily involved with their own label, Epitaph, and were running out of time. The decision to separate from the band's own label was aimed at reducing stress, but it resulted in significant financial success instead. Their Atlantic debut, "Stranger Than Fiction" (1994), remains their most commercially successful album to this day.
Following this, Brett Gurewitz left the band to focus entirely on Epitaph, and Brian Baker, one of the best guitarists in the punk rock and hardcore scene, joined Bad Religion. In the fall of 1995, Bad Religion recorded their ninth studio album, "The Gray Race," in New York City. It was released in February 1996 by Atlantic. The album was the first one to be recorded together as a band since their debut LP, "How Could Hell Be Any Worse?" This was done to establish a sense of unity after Gurewitz's departure. Greg Graffin contributed the majority of the songwriting, and the album was produced by Ric Ocasek, known for his work with bands like Weezer and Bad Brains.
The first two single releases, "A Walk" and "Punk Rock Song," were quite successful, with their accompanying music videos receiving airtime on music television channels. "The Gray Race" reached #56 on the charts in the USA and #11 in Germany. The remastered reissue, handled by Epitaph, is now available on black vinyl.