Great Collapse

Neither Washington Nor Moscow...Again

Written by: PP on 23/07/2018 21:13:28

"For every national anthem, there's another's death song." sings Thomas Barnett on "Forest For The Trees" in his charismatically scratchy, yet explosive style we're so familiar with from Strike Anywhere records. It's exactly the sort of lyrical snippet he's known for, piercingly accurate, politically charged hand grenade that underlines a generational struggle, such as the one we're living through right now with the rise of the alt-right. Just like the iconic lines of "did you say, 'Officer, I am not resisting you.'?" on "Sunset On 32nd" dealing with police brutality, his sharp, intellectual lyricism is at its best when delivered through a platform of melodic hardcore of the punk variety, which is what Great Collapse's sophomore album "Neither Washington Nor Moscow...Again" is all about.

In case you're not familiar with the supergroup from their excellent EP "Elemental" from four years ago, their lineup is star-studded with members of Rise Against, Set Your Goals, Comeback Kid, and others, but essentially they mirror Strike Anywhere's explosive style so closely they might as well be a continuation of the band. That's a compliment, by the way, and a much-needed reminder of how sorely the ferocious political expression Strike Anywhere is missed in the punk scene. And although the first three tracks may be riddled with clichés about Nazis and references to rising fascism on the right that feel like cheap and easy shots to take ("Who Makes" just isn't a good song no matter how you twist it), once you get through these the record starts to show its true colors. Because if there's one trait Thomas Barnett has always been admired for, it's his magnificent clarity on social and political justice, and the ability to translate that into powerful anthems of resistance so perfectly suited for the hardcore punk movement as battle chants at the trenches.

Consider these two gems, for instance: "Our intellect is torn apart from our compassion. We have one generation's chance to fight and win this, the light through the darkness. [...] We push back the world!" on "Meltdown!" encapsulates the left-wing resistance into just a couple of sentences packed within an infectiously catchy, ferocious melodic hardcore song. And "An Injury To One" outlines exactly the problem with a society defined by borders: "DNA of a nation is so goddamn corrupt. And these people aren't our leaders, always spectacle and rust.".

These are just a couple of highlights from a record that's back-loaded with melodic hardcore godhood. Songs like "Southern Exorcism" and "Colony Blackout" should satisfy all Strike Anywhere fans for their razor-sharp hardcore punk where the tempo is floored, yet the melodic shouts and calls to action resonate punk ideals in perfect symbiosis with anthemic choruses and catchy verses. Ignoring the first three tracks, Great Collapse's record is one of the better melodic hardcore releases in the last couple of years.


Download: Meltdown!, Southern Exorcism, Forest For The Trees, An Injury To One, Colony Blackout
For the fans of: Strike Anywhere, Hear The Sirens, After The Fall, Ignite, (old) Rise Against, Anchors
Listen: Facebook

Release date 26.01.2018
End Hits Records

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