Napalm Death: The Code Is Red…Long Live the Code (2005)

Napalm Death’s 2005 album, “The Code Is Red…Long Live the Code,” is a politically charged grindcore record featuring guest appearances from notable musicians like Jello Biafra and Jamey Jasta. The album delves into themes of political corruption, social injustice, and environmental destruction. Incorporating elements of death metal, punk, and industrial music, it showcases the band’s evolution within the grindcore genre while maintaining their signature intensity.

Track Listing

  1. Silence Is Deafening
  2. Right You Are
  3. Diplomatic Immunity
  4. The Code Is Red… Long Live the Code
  5. Climate Controllers
  6. Instruments of Persuasion
  7. The Great and the Good
  8. Sold Short
  9. All Hail the Grey Dawn
  10. Vegetative State
  11. Pay for the Privilege of Breathing
  12. Pledge Yourself to You
  13. Striding Purposefully Backwards
  14. Morale
  15. Our Pain Is Their Power

Length: 45:13


Death metal, grindcore

Release Date

April 25th, 2005

Record Label

Century Media Records

The Lineup for the Album

  • Mark “Barney” Greenway: vocals
  • Mitch Harris: lead guitar, backing vocals
  • Shane Embury: bass, backing vocals, rhythm guitar (on “Morale”)
  • Danny Herrera: drums

Recording Date

September 21st – October 13th, 2004

Recording Studio

Foel Studio (Llanfair Caereinion, Wales)

Produced by

Russ Russell

Album Themes/Concept

Political corruption and abuse of power: The album rails against corrupt politicians, warmongers, and the erosion of civil liberties.

Environmental destruction: Songs like “Climate Controllers” criticize the exploitation of the planet and warn of the consequences of inaction.

Social inequality and oppression: Napalm Death calls out racism, xenophobia, and the marginalization of vulnerable groups.

War and violence: The album condemns the horrors of war and the cycle of violence it perpetuates.

Personal struggles and resilience: While primarily focused on social and political issues, the album also touches on themes of personal resilience and the importance of fighting for what you believe in.

Album Mood

Angry and Aggressive: The music is fast, heavy, and uncompromising, reflecting the band’s fury at the state of the world.The vocals are harsh and guttural, expressing disgust and defiance.

Intense and Chaotic: The songs are often unpredictable, with sudden shifts in tempo and style. This mirrors the chaos and uncertainty of the issues being addressed in the lyrics.

Urgent and Confrontational: The album is a call to action, urging listeners to wake up to the injustices around them and fight back. There is a sense of urgency and desperation in the music, reflecting the gravity of the situation.

Bleak but Hopeful: Despite the dark and pessimistic themes, there is a glimmer of hope in the album’s message of resistance and resilience. The final track, “An Excuse to Die,” ends with a defiant declaration that the struggle will continue.

Album Trivia

Guest Appearances: The album features some notable collaborations with guest vocalists from different metal subgenres, which adds a unique flavor to several tracks. Jello Biafra from Dead Kennedys appears on “The Great and the Good,” Jamey Jasta from Hatebreed contributes to “Instruments of Persuasion” and “Sold Short,” and Jeffrey Walker from Carcass joins in on “Pledge Yourself to You”​.

Experimental Track: The track “Morale” features Shane Embury (usually the bassist) playing rhythm guitar instead of bass, adding an interesting twist to the band’s usual sound.

Critical Acclaim and Induction: “The Code Is Red… Long Live the Code” received widespread acclaim for bringing back the band’s classic aggressive style. It was so well-regarded that it was inducted into the Decibel Magazine Hall of Fame, highlighting its significance in the grindcore genre​.

Listen or Pass

This album might be for you if you…

  • Crave intensity: You thrive on fast, aggressive, and intense music.
  • Embrace extreme metal: You’re a fan of grindcore, death metal, or other extreme metal subgenres.
  • Seek social commentary: You appreciate politically charged and socially conscious lyrics.
  • Enjoy collaborations: You enjoy hearing guest vocalists from other bands.
  • Welcome experimentation: You’re open to some experimentation within the grindcore genre.
  • Prefer raw energy: You like a raw and unpolished sound.
  • Explore Napalm Death’s evolution: You want to explore Napalm Death’s discography beyond their early work.

You might want to pass this one if you…

  • Prefer melodic tunes: You favor slower, more melodic music.
  • Dislike harsh sounds: You’re not a fan of harsh vocals or blast beats.
  • Avoid political themes: You dislike politically charged music.
  • Favor polished production: You prefer a more polished and produced sound.
  • Seek pure grindcore: You’re looking for a purely traditional grindcore album without any experimentation.

Release Date

April 25, 2005