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With Honor, Ringworm, and The Audition…

Posted on Thursday, November 17th, 2005 @ 12:03am » permalink

I checked my P.O. Box for the first time in a little over two weeks on Monday (which I think is the longest I've ever gone without checking my mail in the eight or nine years that I've had the damn thing) and was stunned by how much mail I'm still getting. What's more: A damn good chunk of it's actually good, if not great, and at this rate I already have enough shit to post for like six months! So I'm gonna try to start giving posts like this a shot in an attempt to figure out a way to cover a few more records within three to five days a week. Hopefully my abysmal workload at the day job (not to mention my bandwidth) will permit it, but I've been trying to get this shit up all week and it just didn't happen… so who knows?

With Honor - This is Our RevengeFirst up in the better chunk of Victory Records' latest batch of releases is the latest full-length effort from Connecticut's With Honor: "This is Our Revenge". Like their split CD with The Distance, the material herein is more openly melodic, and actually quite reminiscent of the pop-punk infused hardcore of bands like Strike Anywhere, and the songwriting kicks ass to match. I totally love this brand of fast paced, high energy melodic hardcore with all the dissonant little arpeggiated riffs and shit like that, I just eat it up. While I wasn't quite as into that last split CD as I was their earlier work, I'd rank this as the band's best release to date. The kids really seem to fucking love these guys and I can tell why, because there's just something sincere about how they come across, and with these memorable tunes they're really striking the perfect balance between their heavier and more traditional hardcore influences and all of the overt melody they've grown increasingly fond of over the years. Great stuff, it's as simple as that.

With Honor "Like Trumpets"
With Honor "Elevens"

If you like it, fucking buy it:

@ RevHQ
@ Very Distribution

Ringworm - Justice Replaced by RevengeRingworm has always suffered slightly from being a less than prolific outfit, and when your band releases a benchmark classic like "The Promise" eight years prior to your second full-length, it's no small feat to return to form. But they delivered the goods with "Birth is Pain", and here we are a surprisingly long stretch of four years and a few lineup changes later and they're still cranking out valid material with "Justice Replaced by Revenge". To be wholly honest I can't say this is the band's best material, though my main gripe is simply that the recording suffers from overly prominent vocals/drums and a guitar tone that needs a heavier dose of crunch and additional volume, but I'm loving that fuckin' cover art and the songs hit the mark in terms of blending Ringworm's ripping brand of Cleveland metalcore with a few speedier and more traditional sounding hardcore breaks – all the while with Human Furnace's inimitable vocal presence. Anyone who knows me can tell you that, skepticism aside, I'm always a pretty staunch loyalist to any band that comes from the early- to mid-90's heyday of the Cleveland scene, so you'd be hard-pressed to hand me a Ringworm record that I wouldn't be excited to hear. They're still keeping that era alive, and we need more of that these days…

Ringworm "God Eat God"
Ringworm "Justice Replaced by Revenge"

Now pick that shit up:

@ RevHQ
@ Very Distribution

The Audition - Controversy Loves CompanyI'm getting to this weird point in life where I'll occasionally feel like an idiot listening to bands whose members are significantly younger than I am, and the fact that there are a damn lot of those bands out there doesn't do me any favors. Of course, it doesn't really help matters when it's a pretty typical contemporary emo band like The Audition (yet another group that hails from Chicago, which is apparently the mecca of emo), whose sound on "Controversy Loves Company" is pristinely polished and radio friendly. But what can I say? I'm an absolute sucker for a super catchy, well written tune with strong production values. Throw a load of competently executed vocal harmonies in against a good mix of distorted chords and token clean breaks, with the big sing-along choruses, of course, and I'm hooked as long as the energy level tends to remain in the upper echelons. Say what you will, I'm not ashamed, and I even agree with some of the attacks launched against this particular niche of music, but when it all boils down to the songs, I can get into some of this type of material. I haven't really been in the loop with what's "popular" as of late, so I'm not sure where these guys stand on the hype scale, but based on the strengths of this debut album I have to say I'd be surprised were they not to do pretty well for themselves over the next few years. Like any young band's first record there are some lulls here and there, but for my money there's not a truly bad song herein, and at their best they've basically perfected the formula. Yeah, fuck it, this is a good disc.

The Audition "Dance Halls Turn to Ghost Towns"
The Audition "You've Made Us Conscious"

Don't lie, you're not that hard, you dig it, so drop the cash and grab it:

@ RevHQ
@ Very Distribution

3 Comments...

  1. xbenx says:

    The Ringworm is awesome, vicious and pounding, I wasn't feeling the With Honor though, bit toooo slick.

    Have you heard the new Blacklisted or Killing the dream records Andrew, those fuckin smoke!!!

  2. I can totally agree with write up,the boys from Cleveland still know how to do it catering to their original roots…now only to get the rest of the clan to follow suit (ie. Integrity, Pale Creation, Die hard, etc.) But seriously, I have always wondered how many re-issues of "The Promise" can be put out by them…it's definitely nice to hear some new material by this top-notch act.

  3. Buske DNA says:

    I think the Ringworm record is the best release of 2005 thus far. "Birth Is Pain" had 1 song I could have done without (that being the only song Sorg wrote for that release), however, "Justice…" is flawless as far as song writing goes. The recording doesn't bother me as much as it does other people apparently because I can't really seem to wish anything differently. If there's one thing Ringworm is good for (though I can name a thousand), it definitely has to be sticking to their sound/roots. Ten years plus and they're, if not more, just as brutal as ever. All hail the Worm!

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