Paint It Black

Surrender EP

Written by: PP on 20/08/2009 17:32:46

Paint It Black are one of the most respected bands in the hardcore / hardcore punk scene alongside bands like Have Heart and others who display passion for music in its purest form, through a menacing, unforgiving instrumental assault that doesn't want to be friends with elements like melody and catchiness. They're very good at what they do, so if you're looking for some ass-kicking hardcore, you should turn your eyes toward their new four track 7"/EP "Surrender".

Have Heart and perhaps Pulling Teeth are the two bands you'd first think of in conjunction with Paint It Black, but where those bands can feel somewhat one dimensional at times, Paint It Black is able to pull out two very different sounds from their repertoire. One is relentless, visceral hardcore / hardcore punk that is about as unmelodic as it gets, sounding most like the two bands mentioned as well as bands like Integrity, Ceremony and so forth, best displayed on the breakneck speed "Cipher" or the insane title track. Vocalist Dan Yemin (Lifetime, Kid Dynamite) sounds like a mental hospital escapee displaying withdrawal symptoms from various substances all at once, a trait both loved and hated by hardcore fans, but one that is the very reason why so much of Paint It Black's music is inaccessible to most.

The second type is one where Paint It Black excels if you ask me, bringing in brighter guitar lines into their high-octane delivery, justifying references to Lifetime, Capital and Kid Dynamite soundwise. When the clean vocals appear during EP opener "Sacred", it's almost impossible not to sing along and marvel at the juxtaposition of the rough and the smooth, the harsh and the pretty, both of which are contrasted so well. I still don't understand why the band doesn't exclusively write songs of this style instead, it should be clear to anyone with hearing capability that this is where they are at their very best. This is also something that I said in my previous review of the band's record last year: when the band focuses more towards melodic hardcore than on flattening your aural nerves with a hardcore truck, it's not hard to understand why the band are so respected and well-liked in the scene. But when they lean on the latter, the songs feel little more than just pointless macho hardcore.


Download: Sacred
For the fans of: Have Heart, Pulling Teeth, Capital, Lifetime
Listen: Myspace

Release date 18.08.2009
Fat Wreck Chords

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