The Suicide Machines

Revolution Spring

Written by: PP on 02/05/2021 14:38:41

Here's a record that slipped by unnoticed by this magazine last year, yet it's such a good release the mistake has to be rectified right here and now. But first, a quick history lesson. The Suicide Machines have been quiet for the past fifteen years, having last released "War Profiteering Is Killing Us All" in 2005 via Side One Dummy. Prior to that, the band reliably released punk records that have since earned cult status at about a pace of one album every two years during the golden heydey of melodic punk rock between 1996-2005. They broke up due to interpersonal tensions and have only intermittently played reunion shows since then. Now they're back, and what a statement of form seventh album "Revolution Spring" is by Jason Navarro & co.

So how does it sound like? Like a freight train is about to run you over. It's a brilliantly varied record that swings wide across different styles in punk and related genres, ranging from ultra-tight skate punk on tracks like "Well Whiskey Wishes" to pure hardcore-tinged, lightning speed onslaught on the gang-shout laden "Awkward Always". The Rancid-influenced ska/reggae street punk is audible on album highlight "To Play Caesar (Is To Be Stabbed To Death)" and on "Black Tar Halo", whereas "Trapped In A Bomb" and "Eternal Contrarian" echo melodic punk influence from bands like The Bouncing Souls or H2O. And what about "Flint Hostage Crisis" or "Detroit Is The New Miami"? These ferocious hardcore cuts sound like something Paint It Black could've written. Angry as hell, the fury and urgency within these tracks are palpable, capturing aggression on record as few other bands can.

This variety is what makes "Revolution Spring" such a strong album. It differentiates the sixteen songs delivered in a racy 34 minutes from each other nicely, resulting in constant highs that feel rejuvenating and fresh time and time again. That's why when the band goes from hardcore street punk style "Black Tar Halo" into the ska cut "Empty Time" back-to-back it feels so effortless and sensible. What's more, the incredibly tight guitars and great riffs are a constant across the album, with the clean and barked vocals forming a solid contrast between each other, resulting in one of the most criminally underrated records of 2020 that unjustly disappeared right into the Covid-19 pandemic's beginnings. Do yourself a favor and check it out.

Download: To Play Caesar (Is To Be Stabbed To Death), Eternal Contrarian, Awkward Always, Black Tar Halo
For the fans of: Rancid, H2O, The Bouncing Souls, Paint It Black, PEARS
Listen: Facebook

Release date 27.03.2020
Fat Wreck Chords

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