Category Archives: post-hardcore

Review: Balance and Composure – Only Boundaries

Label: No Sleep Records Released: August 11, 2009 I love when a record is really busy, but doesn’t get lost in the busyness. On the four song Only Boundaries, Balance and Composure fully live up to their name, balancing intricacies with listenable sensibility and remaining composed while the music swirls. “I Can’t Do This Alone” combines a tribal rhythm with… Read more »

Review: Rapid Cities – Machinery Saints

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Label: Love/Hate Records Released: May 2009 In some cases, albums where a band knows exactly where they’re going and how they’ll get there deliver a level of perfection that earlier albums hadn’t. However, there is an urgency that blossoms from the creative free-for-all of a band finding their way as they go. There’s a visceral energy that perfection just can’t… Read more »

Review: The Reptilian – Boys’ Life

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Label: Count Your Lucky Stars Released: March 3, 2009 Any post-hardcore album worth its grooves (or bits and bytes as the case may be) ought to make one think of Fugazi, right? Well, this EP from Kalamazoo, Michigan’s The Reptillian reminds me of…well…Cake. Yeah, the quirky, jazzy, hipper-than-thou hipsters of the 90s. Now, don’t get me wrong though. The Reptilian… Read more »

Review: City of Ships – Live Free or Don’t Tour

Label: Forcefield Records Released: January 27, 2009 This vinyl-only release collects two earlier City of Ships EPs from 2006 and 2007 that are clearly worthy of being issued on this superior format. Both EPs feature monstrous waves of dissonance underscored by shockingly melodic lines. The tension created isn’t pleasant, but reflects that nice is a minor virtue next to truth… Read more »

Review: Protest the Hero – Fortress

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Label: Vagrant Records Released: February 11, 2008 There is a musical gray area that exists between good bands that live within their limitations and great bands that have no limitations. Bands in that gray area are clearly very, very good and deserve credit for their willingness to push the envelope of their sound. At the same time, they get dinged… Read more »

Review: Loom – Angler

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Label: Exigent Records Released: February 26, 2008 It seems that some of the least likely bands are incorporating strings of the non-guitar variety these days. Plenty of metal and hardcore bands don’t seem to even blink at the idea anymore. Sometimes, it sticks out like a sore thumb and other times, it’s perfectly integrated. Salt Lake City’s Loom is the… Read more »

Review: Thrice – The Alchemy Index Vols I & II: Fire & Water

Label: Vagrant Records Released: October 16, 2007 Some bands seem to have potential, but early on, it’s unclear whether they’ll fulfill that. When I first heard Thrice open for Hot Water Music at the 9:30 Club back in 2002, that’s exactly the way I felt about them. The live show was dynamic and energetic, but the two studio albums were… Read more »

Interview: Towers of Hanoi

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Gainesville, Florida’s Towers of Hanoi recently unleashed their third release upon us and Paranoia for the New Year is a shining example of what post-hardcore can be even while being brought down to earth by simple hard rock influences. It’s the kind of album that makes you wonder, “Whoa, how did they do that?” In an effort to find out,… Read more »

Review: Prize Country – Lottery of Recognition

Label: Exigent Records Released: 2007 Prize Country’s Lottery of Recognition comes off as a mix between the post-hardcore leanings of Fugazi and the dense hardcore of Quicksand. Or perhaps as the dark side of Hot Water Music. However, you describe it, their music is simply unrelenting. Its noisiness belies the band’s tightness. They are riffy, but without any of the… Read more »