onsdag 18 april 2012

Bedtime For Democracy: Pick Your Side

Pick Your Side - Let Me Show You How Democracy Works LP
2012, A389

Boasting a lineup of people from old school heavies Haymaker and grinders Fuck The Facts, these Canadians deliver one of the better old school hardcore albums so far this year. It's old school hardcore with a twist, though. The pedigree of it's membes shines through so there's a ton of grind elements and lots of solid melodic crust thrown into the mix, but there's very little metal here, except for some scatterings of chugging heavy riffage in some of the crushingly heavy breakdowns. We get something akin to a mix of Tragedy, Haymaker and Sick Of It All, with a bit of a power violence vibe going, adding some sporadic but furious blast beats here and there. All the songs are short and quick (except for the dirgy doomy crust-killer Ham Sandwhich, which is by far the longest song on the album) and display lots of dynamics for such a musically limited style as hardcore; with lots and lots of tempo shifts and loads of starts and stops and spectacularly memorable riffs. The obvious talent of everyone involved is easily one of the best assets of PYS; with that amount of talent and experience in the game, the songs become much more fluid and have a natural progression that makes them both complex and memorable. Lyrically this is raging, political old school hardcore dealing with issues like global warming, the monetary system, religion et cetera. Jeff Beckman's raspy, barbwire voice lends everything a sense of urgency and rage, while the general tone of the songs isn't quite as depressive as one would expect. The production may be a bit on the rough side and a little bit muddy, but this isn't necessarily a problem, since it serves to capture the energy and rage of these songs alot more effectively than a slick production ever could. This is the band's first full length, but their equally awesome debut seven incher is still available.

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