Photo: Steve Gullick

The Damned – “Standing on the Edge of Tomorrow” (Singles Going Steady)

"Standing on the Edge of Tomorrow" ends up as much a powerful expression of present dystopian fears as it is a kicking throwback to '80s goth rock.

Adriane Pontecorvo: In case you’ve forgotten, we live about as close to a sci-fi dystopia as we ever have before. Luckily, the Damned are here to set it to some dance grooves and Blade Runner graphics, and it ends up as much a powerful expression of present fears as it is a kicking throwback to ’80s goth rock. Ominous and still kind of fun – after all, if we can’t dance to the end of the world, what can we dance to? [8/10]

Tristan Kneschke: Culture is going through a science fiction fad, a glorious development. This slick video supports an epic song and hits the genre checklist: spaceships ascending to the heavens, panels with bright red buttons, cryogenic pods, space stations gently drifting in the depths of space. Every once in a while, a decent budget also produces a great visual. [8/10]

Steve Horowitz: Who would have thought the Damned as the punk rock survivors who find promise in the days ahead? They sound more like the Moody Blues than the Sex Pistols here, but the Damned play with an insistent edge to their music that keeps the material from getting too pretentious. The hope of tomorrow may be a far cry from a past that suggested no future. That was then, this is now, and later may just be the time of our lives. [7/10]

Robert Evers: Did I miss the point at which the Damned reached mainstream crossover potential, or is this it? For a band that has been working for over 40 years, I’d say they did a good job of not “selling out” and has earned a radio hit. It sounds like the Misfits meets Bad Religion in a way that really works, and the video looks like what a “Space Oddity” video might look like if it dropped today. It combines everything I love about Cold War dystopia and speculative space travel. Surprising to hear something hopeful from the Damned. [8/10]

John Garratt: There’s something funny about listening to a song named “Standing on the Edge of Tomorrow” that is clearly riding on the sounds of yesterday. That isn’t to say that the Damned are phoning it in at this point (though that chorus could use a few additional words). If the band’s sound isn’t up for an update these days, then they’re going to have to channel their collective energy into the performance and the theatrics. And that’s pretty much what the main thrust behind punk from the beginning, right? Minus the spaceships, of course. [7/10]

SCORE: 7.60