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In Between, “Different Language,” from Demo 2011 (Photobooth, 2011)

I'm sitting here trying to figure out why the hell I never wrote about Maryland's In Between before, 'cause this demo is sheer perfection and still routinely kicks my ass to this day. I must have discovered it during my 2012 - 2014 hiatus, otherwise I most definitely would've been gushing about it right away.

While I enjoy everything that the band has recorded since, and am certainly not one of those "the demo was better" types, I have to confess that there's just something about this particular set of songs that totally hits the spot—right down to the beautifully eye-catching cover art. More effectively so than the material that followed, the demo provides catchy and energetic melodic hardcore that's got that emo-ish, pop-punk edge while still being heavy and not at all childish or goofy. Every song's a keeper, and "Different Language" is just fucking flawless.

I'll always be a sucker for this type of top-shelf, fast-paced, sing-along, officially lose my shit greatness...