Lion of Judah "Universal Peace" CDPosted on Tuesday, November 7th, 2006 @ 8:57am » permalink
I had been meaning to check out this somewhat mysterious Washington, DC act for awhile now, and I'm kicking myself for sleeping on their first EP. "Universal Peace", their debut full-length on Youngblood Records, is what I would best describe as "progressive" hardcore, and it offers a pretty damn impressive blend of influences that comes across as significantly more inventive than the vast majority of the hardcore you'll come across these days. Even the traditionally based chord progressions and straightforward hardcore energy are layered with everything from technically sound riffs ala Burn or Turning Point to strangely rocked out runs that remind me of later Leeway, with a few noisy leads on occasion and plenty of those ringing DC undercurrents that create a great sense of melody. Some of that may also be due to the fact that the album was recorded by Don Zientara, so there's a nice, dry sound with a lot of natural texture to it – highlighting the punchy basslines and generally interesting rhythmic flow all around. It's weird, because as creative and forward-thinking as this material is, there's an odd sort of "dated" quality to it, but in a really bizarre and interesting way. I can't quite peg it, and I sort of feel silly making the comparisons I've made – reference points or not – because these cats seem more often to garner loose comparisons to more significant "classics" like the Bad Brains or something, which is probably an influence, but… I don't find their sound to make that apparent. Whatever the case, this is a pretty amazing record, and I highly recommend this shit. Awesome.
You know my shtick, so don't be an ass, show some support and make the purchase if you dig the tunes (and you should). It's listed as a "pre-order" on the Youngblood site, but it's officially out and shipping now: