Sunday, December 28, 2008

Tear It Up - Taking You Down With Me (VBR)

This is the final release for Tear it Up, who I'm sure will be missed by many, and the CD version has the tracks from their split EP with Down in Flames added on along with a live set recorded in Maryland. For those uninitiated, these guys play straight hardcore/punk with no bullshit. You've got your gruff yelling, simple chord progressions, succinct lead riffs, ample tempo changes, etc. From super fast ragers like the 20-second "In Case You Didn't Notice, I'm a Martyr" to slower and longer tracks like the plodding title track (which is actually an instrumental complete with slightly heavier rhythms and tons of chaotic leads). The recording's not bad at all. The mix is really even and warm, with natural tones across the board. The guitar tone is pretty thin and lightly distorted, but it sounds perfect for their style, and lets the bass hold more weight. It sounds great for what they seem to have been going for, because most bands that shoot for a sound like this tend to fail on numerous levels... but not here. To my surprise the live set sounds pretty damn good, too. It's a little noisier, but the mastering of everything makes the live material fit in very nicely against the studio tracks, and the live mix is pretty fucking nice. I'm surprised... The layout's all in black and white with some band photos and one panel showing the cover from the Tear it Up/Down in Flames split 7", and the rest providing the lyrics and such. It looks alright, but it could definitely be more visually engaging. The lyrics are straightforward and deal with personal issues in the best possible way, just being honest and pissed: "Too many ideas not enough time, Too many thoughts fighting in my mind, Betrayal depression the usual themes, Striving for more than just being obscene..." I tend to get a little bored by this style of hardcore/punk in large doses, but there's only 18 minutes of studio material in this CD, of which only around 13 minutes is new, so they're able to hold my interest. The newer songs aren't quite as memorable or energetic as the split 7" tracks, as the chaotic tinges play more of a role, but nonetheless the bonus material does make this a keeper. (6/10)~ ~ AVERSIONLINE.COM

Tracks
.. a higher standard
.. everybody hates me
.. in case you didn't notice, i'm a martyr
.. one down me to go
.. taking you down with me
.. here's your honesty
.. when will it stop
.. down in flames
.. license, registration and insurance please
.. it's fucking dead
.. that life
.. torn apart
.. number one wish
.. live track
.. live track
.. live track
.. live track
.. live track
.. live track
.. live track
.. live track
.. live track
.. live track
.. live track

** year - 2.003
** Label - Havoc Recs.
** Home-page - n/a
** Buy - www.havocrex.com

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