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Chain of Strength "The One Thing That Still Holds True" CD

Posted on Wednesday, March 29th, 2006 @ 12:22pm » permalink

I could not for the life of me decide what to post today (a common problem), so I chose to go with something simple since it's a busy week. Chain of Strength is certainly not an obscure "straightedge" hardcore band, but I've had the song "True Till Death" stuck in my head like crazy this week (I think it started when I got in an empty elevator at work the other day and it reeked of cigarettes, go figure), so when I pulled out the disc last night I figured what the hell.

The band was from southern California and was only around for a little over three years, with members having played with Justice League and Hard Stance beforehand (they also shared members with Inside Out and No for an Answer at certain points, but I think there was some overlap with the existence of Chain of Strength there). They released their first 7", "True Till Death" on Revelation Records in 1989, and their second, "What Holds Us Apart", on Foundation Records in 1990. Five or six years later Revelation re-released both 7"s and a previously unreleased track on a CD called "The One Thing That Still Holds True". Perhaps an ironic title, as the band didn't really "hold true" even when they were around, creating much debate about their "straightedge" status even before they broke up by admitting in interviews to "occasionally drink" and later claiming that "straightedge doesn't mean never". You can check out this solid interview from 1991, weeks after the band's demise, for more on that. Personally, I disagree with the interview's stance that sort of tosses off derogatory reactions to the band's not-exactly-straightedge reality as coming from "militants", because regardless of what your opinions of straightedge are, "militancy" has nothing to do with it. It's just plain logic: If you "occasionally drink", you're not straightedge. The end.

But all that crap aside, what really matters is that the material still totally kicks ass and is classic to this day as nothing more than good ol' youth crew hardcore.

Chain of Strength "True Till Death"
Chain of Strength "Too Deep Until Now"

After the band called it quits, members later resurfaced most notably in Statue and Circle Storm, with guitarist Paul "Frosty" Hertz eventually joining Man Will Surrender for one album. For whatever reason I was never that big on Circle Storm, but I always loved Statue's "Filter the Infection" EP. That's life.

The reissue is of course still in print, so if by chance there are any youngsters reading this who've continually missed the boat, pick it up from the label's rather immense distro catalog:

@ RevHQ

Oddly enough, on the other end of the spectrum opposite straightedge, I was listening to Grimple in the car all morning and was reminded how awesome they were, so don't be surprised if they pop up here in the next week or so.


  1. apt13.com says:

    damn i forgot how awesome that statue 12" was. thanks for sparking it back into my mind making me dig it out. wasnt there some kind of unreleased LP or another 7" or something from statue? i vaguely remember something "else" floating around back in the day.


    There was also a Statue 7" called "Something to Say" but I actually never heard that one for whatever reason.

  3. -cja says:

    ya know… this (compilation) album was nice but absolutely ruined due to the remixing and rumored vocal overdubs. as great as this album is because it houses all their releases in one simple format, i can't stress enough to seek out the originals as the sound quality and overall atmosphere is far superior than that found on here. if you don't want to front the cash for the OGs, then this is indeed the way to go, but otherwise…

    also, rumor has it that COS is touring Japan sometime this year and may do re-union shows (or rather a tour) across the US. should be interesting i guess.

  4. -cja says:

    also, the second Statue release was in the form of a 7" but also a CD as well. i can't remember how many songs were on the 7", but the CD version has eight tracks and was released by Ambassador, a sub-label of Rev, so it should be easy to find.

    Andrew, how could you not mention Chris Bratton doing Wool after COS (along with other noteworthy bands who's names escape me)? 'box set' was a good album.

    another point to make light of… if memory serves me, i think the track listing of the COS LP is different from how the original 7"s are too… wow, i'm mr. complainypants today! haha

  5. Carter says:

    Agreed. The remixing ruined this album for me. The originals were soooooo much better.

  6. Anonymous says:

    I wish REV would re-re-issue this with the original mix…

    Mike Inhuman

    REV should also make a TOGETHER COMP cd asap!

  7. wes says:

    I've got the unmixed songs off of True Till Death. The new intro to True Till Death sounds kinda dumb, but other than that I like the remixing, the old mix sounds like you're listening through a pillow.

  8. mark pennington says:

    I was just listening to this the other day. Probably the single best band of the entire first wave of youth crew.

  9. Ken says:

    This blog really roxxxx hell!!


  10. Anonymous says:

    I hated that Statue "Something to say" because some of the songs were live, but unlistenable due to the horrendous sound quality. However, Statue was a great band and deserves a post of it's own at this magnificent blog.

  11. Tim says:

    I dig circle storm very, very much…

  12. Curt says:

    Chain was the most misunderstood-bands in HC. It's funny to see the nonsense that is written online. If we had the net in the 80's, history would have been alot more accurate. TTD

  13. Anonymous says:

    ^^^Yeah, because no one lies on the internet….

  14. curt says:

    It's not the lying i'm intersted in! It's the way statements are taken out of context. like being anonymous! It's a cowardly worn mask, only wimps w/little character-wear.

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