Entertainment Weekly - 12/12/97, p.91
"...Eccentric surf jangles and stomp beats derived from aboriginal folk music add up to a forward motion more convincing in its resolute righteousness than U2, if not quite the Clash."
- Rating: A-
Midnight Oil includes: Peter Garrett, Jim Moginie, Rob Hirst.
Producers include: Midnight Oil, Magoo, Nick Launay, Warne Livesay, Glyn Johns.
Includes liner notes by Tim Winton.
Since its 1978 debut, Midnight Oil has poured its passion for left-wing causes into an impressive canon that combines intelligent lyrics with hook-laden choruses and slashing rhythms. 20,000 WATT R.SL. simultaneously looks to the past and forward, including two newer songs from the forthcoming REDNECK WONDERLAND. Though the band's geographical references tend to be Aussie-centric, the injustices the Oils decry, ranging from the mistreatment of native people and culture ("Beds Are Burning") to the greed of corporations ("Blue Sky Mine"), are universal. Guitarists Jim Moginie and Martin Rotsey rage throughout with Garrett's voice leading the charge on "Best Of Both Worlds," occasionally slowing up enough to warble on harmonica ("Truganini"). Clinging to the ideological and musical tenets of punk, 20,000 WATT R.S.L. is a primer for the only band that continues to matter in these regards.