In a couple of seconds you will be redirected to our new site. Click here if you can't contain your excitement.


Part Time Killer – People. Religion. Death

“People. Religion. Death” starts off with a spoken word intro that sounds like it belongs in a bad third person shooter. But then Part Time Killer dive headfirst into “Heartbreaking Music”, a song with a strong Pennywise/Bad Religion vibe and just keep going from there.

Like their Scandinavian brethren in Millencolin and Satanic Surfers before them, these guys listened to a whole bunch of American punkrock bands from the 90s and it shows. Lyrically things aren’t very shocking either as these former Flippin’ Beans members address everything that’s wrong with the world today.

Not the best album in its kind but if you’re a diehard fan of any of the abovementioned bands, you might want to give “People. Religion. Death” a spin. Just skip the intro because it’s really, really lame.
Score: 6 out of 10

Crucial Dudes – 61 Penn

Crucial Dudes are a bunch of New Jersey natives who recently dropped their debut full-length. It’s called “61 Penn” and on it they race through ten songs at lightning speeds while tossing melodies around like there’s no tomorrow.

I doubt the new Saves The Day album will sound like “Through Being Cool”, Latterman isn’t around anymore and it’s not like Lifetime is constantly releasing albums either… so if you’re into any of those bands, feel free to pick up your copy of “61 Penn”. They don’t even come close to doing anything new or original but they play their songs with passion. It makes their debut an album worth checking out!
Score: 7 out of 10

Blacklist Royals – Semper Liberi

Nashville’s Blacklist Royals have released a highly enjoyable album called “Semper Liberi”. It’s like listening to a mix of Rancid, Social D and Gaslight Anthem with a lot of organ/keyboard sounds thrown in. It’s not like these guys are reinventing the wheel or anything, they just released an album that pretty much guarantees a good time and a big smile. Hell, it might even make the sun come out for a little while!
Score: 7 out of 10

Crazy Arm – Born To Ruin

Crazy Arm get to call Plymouth home and are a bunch of twangy punkrockers who like to combine a variety of styles ranging from punkrock to country on their debut “Born To Ruin”. There really aren’t too many bands out there who sound like these guys, probably because they’ve got a little bit of everything going on in their songs.

Cuts like “Blind Summit” and “Broken By The Wheel” are up-tempo country songs with slide guitars and sad lyrics included while “Christ In Concrete” comes with the brooding tones of 16 Horsepower. And then there’s ‘Reassure Me’ which is a lot wilder than any of the abovementioned. Or just have a listen to opening track “Asphalt” in which they already show right off the bat that they like to fool around with dynamics. Yet it all blends into another so nicely that you can’t really make a clear distinction between the different genres. So yeah, there’s a whole lot going on here but the most important thing is that these guys’ debut rocks from start to finish.
Score: 7.5 out of 10

Alkaline Trio – Damnesia

On their semi-new album Alkaline Trio covers Violent Femmes, a band who themselves are not entirely unfamiliar with playing acoustic songs in a rocking kinda way. Our favorite gloomy punkrockers do a pretty good job with “I Held Her In My Arms” and it blends right in with the rest of the album where these guys take some of their favorite songs from their back catalog and strip them down to an acoustic version.

Opener “Calling All Skeletons” hits just the spot right off the bat, sounding as good as the original version. It’s as good a way as any to display the band’s songwriting chops. “This Could Be Love” is another winner with its ominous piano and “The American Scream” is without a doubt one of this album’s standouts.

Okay, so sometimes I would’ve liked them to take a couple more risks and both new songs (“Olde English 800” and “I Remember A Rooftop”) aren’t their best ever written, but “Damnesia” sure is a treat for the fans and it will tie us over just fine until their next album comes out.
Score: 7.5 out of 10

Atlas Losing Grip – State Of Unrest

Punkrock in the 90s meant listening to Millencolin, Lagwagon and Satanic Surfers for a lot of us. That particular sound has largely vanished over the years and is now reduced to bands like Strung Out releasing best of albums. Luckily we still have Atlas Losing Grip to carry the torch with former Satanic Surfers vocalist Rodrigo Alfaro behind the mic. Which kinda looks like a torch come to think of it.

Following up “Shut The World Out” and “Watching The Horizon”, Atlas Losing Grip simply delivers more of the same on “State Of Unrest”. Spread out over forty minutes, they dish out mostly fast songs with plenty of singalong moments and tasty melodic riffs.

Like a Swedish Rise Against, Atlas Losing Grip released one of the best punkrock albums I’ve heard in quite some time and there’s no doubt in my mind that “State Of Unrest” will take this band to the next level. And deservedly so.
Score: 8 out of 10

Title Fight – Shed

While 2009’s “The Last Thing You Forget” was more of an odds and ends compilation gathered from demos, splits and EPs, “Shed” is Title Fight’s real debut full-length. These Pennsylvania natives took their sound, handed it over to producer Walter Schreifel (Gorilla Biscuits, Rival Schools) and came out of the studio as a band with a face of their own and the album to show for it.

Take your basic melodic hardcore and make it sound poppy with plenty of 90s indie influences from acts such as Jawbreaker, Sunny Day Real Estate and Texas Is The Reason. That’s pretty much Title Fight’s mission statement. And listening to songs like “Coxton Yard” or “Society”, it becomes pretty clear they’ve succeeded in a great way. With the band’s signature dual vocal attack of guitarist Jamie Rhoden and bassist Ned Russin firmly in place, they run through twelve songs with ease while being backed up by Ned’s twin brother Ben on drums. Damn fine debut!
Score: 8 out of 10

Hoch/Tief – ST

This self-titled album may be Hoch/Tief’s debut, these guys have already been around the block in outfits such as BOILER and CargoCity. Not that I’ve ever heard of either of those bands, I’m just repeating what I’ve read on their bio sheet.

With influences like Helmet, Quicksand and Texas Is The Reason firmly in place, these guys deliver some potent riffs alongside decent melodies and know how to keep things interesting throughout the entire album. They do sing in German however… which could be a good or a very bad thing depending on how much you like ze Germans.
Score: 6.5 out of 10

Dolorean – The Unfazed

If twang is a word you’re fond of, then chances are high you’ve already heard of Dolorean. On “The Unfazed” these Portland, Oregon natives sound a little wilder than what we’re used to from them even though ‘wild’ for Dolorean does not carry the same meaning as it does for your average thrashcore band. To situate this more properly… their idea of wild constitutes of using sticks rather than brushes when playing the drums.

If however Americana brimming with melancholy and lyrics about people who don’t understand each other or themselves is your thing, then you’ll find everything you need on “The Unfazed”. No doubt about it.
Score: 7 out of 10

Blood Command – Hand Us The Alpha Male!

Is it just me or does that guy on the cover look a helluva lot like Dave Grohl? Blood Command sure don’t sound like the Foo Fighters though. They’re a Norwegian outfit who surprisingly don’t go through life wearing corpse paint and inverted crosses, but who rather play a kind of punky hardcore which they themselves describe as artpunk/deathpop/hardcore. Whatever suits you best I guess.

Musically things sound pretty convincing with the occasional reference to At The Drive-In. But the female vocals of Silje Tombre are just painful. It’s like listening to a crow go in overdrive up to the point where only dogs can hear her. Not a good thing if you ask me.
Score: 3.5 out of 10

Flogging Molly – Speed Of Darkness

When Flogging Molly delivers a new album, you should know what to expect by now… and that’s once again no different on “Speed Of Darkness”. Mixing Irish folk music and punkrock complete with socially aware lyrics is what these guys do best. So why change a winning team?

While Flogging Molly was at first best known for their live shows where they effortlessly sweep everyone into a frenzy, their studio albums have continually become more interesting as well with “Float” as a real standout. They continue down the same road on their fifth album, adding more variation by fooling around with different sounds and rhythms.

From the vintage Flogging Molly sound of “Speed Of Darkness” to the more restrained “The Cradle Of Humankind” and the bluesy “The Heart Of The Sea”, they never fumble the ball and head straight for the endzone for another touchdown. How’s that for a sports metaphor? Anyway, “Speed Of Darkness” is another solid addition to the band’s already impressive back catalog.
Score: 7.5 out of 10
Borstal Beat Records

White Wires – WWII

Sun-drenched garage pop from Canada? Sure! Why the hell not! While the abbreviation in the album title is normally not associated with fun, these guys prove that it’s possible. They race through twelve songs in less than half an hour while singing about girls and the beach and back it all up with fuzzed up guitars and poppy melodies. Yeah, it’s been done before countless times but who cares!
Score: 6.5 out of 10

Trap Them – Darker Handcraft

Like a hyperkinetic version of Entombed, Trap Them unleashes hell on “Darker Handcraft”. I’m not sure what to call it… it’s like grindcore, punk and hardcore all rolled up into one big uppercut that will floor you no matter how big you are.

It’s not like they’re forcing themselves to be overtly brutal, it just seems to come out that way. This is not for the weak at heart… actually I’m not sure who this could be good for. But if you are looking for some extremely nasty sounding metal, then Trap Them has got you covered with “Darker Handcraft”.
Score: 7.5 out of 10

Fireworks – Bonfires EP

Following up 2009’s “All I Have To Offer Is My Own Confusion”, Fireworks is back with a 4-song EP. With words like fireworks and bonfires being tossed around, you’d expect this thing to light up like a flare. And I have to say that these Michigan natives don’t disappoint. Expect more catchy pop-punk like they cranked out on their debut with some Craig’s Brother and Junction 18 influences.
Score: 7 out of 10


Face Tomorrow - Face Tomorrow

by Christophe

If there's anyhting you need to know about Face Tomorrow, it's this: there is, for as far as I know, no better rock band in The Netherlands.

This is their fourth album, and never before has the band sounded so tight - kudos to a great production, by the way - and so focussed.

Imagine if Texas is the Reason had song-sex with Muse. Or if Radiohead had given Sunny Day Real Estate blowjobs....

Basically, this record is like a hermaphrodite threeway. It's got the best of three worlds!

Wonderful emo, delicate indiepop and straight up rock with stadium-sized allure. It's all there.

And there's plenty of moneyshots around: "All th Way", "The Fix", "Move On", "The Maze"... All killer!

But there is one filler: the instrumental track "Dead End". And although it's nice, it interrupts the great mood set by the previous tracks. Honestly? I think it could've been left out.

But that's all the criticism I can give. So go on, check it out, because you won't want to miss this one!
Score: 8,5 out of 10

Mother of Mercy - IV: Symptoms of Existence

by Christophe

As you may remember, I am quite fond of some old school metalcore releases. Like "For Those Who Were Crucified" by All Out War.

Well, actually that's one of the only metalcore albums that still occasionally blasts through the speakers.

But I must say that Mother of Mercy comes pretty close to that standard with "IV: Symptoms of Existence".

Their brutal metallic hardcore is anything but original or creative, but highly efficient. And the raging screams may lack a bit of depth, but makes up for that with a huge amount of spitting rage.

Now mosh it up!
Score: 7 out of 10

Red Tape Parade - The Third Rail of Life

by Christophe

Red Tape Parade is a German punkrock band. And "The Third Reich of Life"... Ehm... Entschuldigung... "The Third Rail of Life" is their second full-length.

In a certain way, it's pretty good, with hints of Rise Against and Good Riddance and a couple of epic tunes.

But at some points the vocals get really nasal. Which is pretty damn annoying and not doing this album any justice. Too bad.
Score: 6 out of 10

Lemuria - Pebble

by Christophe

Really, I'm not sure what to make of this... At certain moments, I think I really love Lemuria. Some songs make me think about times when I was young, careless, and yet depressed and full of teen angst, and listening to cutesy grungy bands like Elastica. Or at a later time in life, when I was a little older, but no longer careless and still depressed and listening to cutesy punkrock bands like Discount. So yeah, Lemuria has some good things going for 'em. Especially listening to a pretty cool song like "Pleaser" or "The One".

But then they suddenly start to bore the hell out of me with a couple of rather uninteresting songs. And there's a certain depth missing, both in vocals and music.

And halfway through the album, there's something like "Ribcage", which really shouldn't have made this album, or any other album for that matter.

So, to be honest, this album is not half bad, but it's not exactly half good either.
Score: 5 out of 10

Transit - Keep This To Yourself

by Christophe


That's all I can say when discovering this Bostonian five-piece. "Keep it to Yourself" is Transit's second album. But I never heard the first one. No biggie, this album'll do just fine.

Here's why: Transit has succeeded in blending Saves The Day-ish poppunk with Polar Bear Club-y rock.

I could make some remarks about the lead vocals, balancing on the edge of being a little off-key and lacking some versatility. But that's easily compensated by the crafty songwriting and excellent backing vocals.

"Keep it To Yourself" makes for a pretty good and interesting punkrock album.
Score: 7,5 out of 10

Bayonet – Bayonet

Bayonet is a new band around Senses Fail’s Buddy Nielsen who surrounded himself with The Banner’s Jeremy Comitas, Fit For An Autopsy’s Will Putney and Suburban Scum’s Paul Klein. What these guys sound like on their five-song debut? Pissed off. Very pissed off actually.

Don’t expect to hear Senses Fail 2.0… Bayonet is way rawer and straight-forward and just plain fucking heavy. Nielsen goes all out and spills his guts (get it? Spills his guts… Bayonet), seemingly unloading all of his frustrations in five short blasts that are over before you know it. It leaves you with just one choice… hit that play button again and start waiting for that full-length.
Score: 7.5 out of 10

S.O.S. – I Owe You Nothing

S.O.S. is Terror’s Scott Vogel (vocals) and Nick Jett (drums) alongside Hatebreed’s Chris Beattie (bass). Throw guitarists Matt Henderson (Agnostic Front/Madball) and Sam Trapkin (Trapped Under Ice) in the mix and you’re looking at a band who have plenty to live up to even though they’ll you right away that they owe you nothing.

On the band’s first release, S.O.S. sounds exactly like what you’d expect looking at the band’s pedigree… this is fast and pissed off NYHC that bounces, grooves and thrashes throughout all seven songs until the last notes of “Choking On Dust” ring out. They don’t offer anything “I Owe You Nothing” they haven’t already showed us with their past work but fuck it, this is simply solid hardcore.
Score: 7 out of 10

Set Your Goals – Burning At Both Ends

Set Your Goals is one of the bands that popped up a couple of years ago combining pop-punk with hardcore breakdowns like New Found Glory used to. Unlike say, A Day To Remember though, Set Your Goals actually managed to pull it off in a convincing way.

“Burning At Both Ends” is already album number three and on it they continue down the same road with bouncy rhythms, ridiculously catchy melodies and that dual vocal attack they truly excel at. Kicking things off in high gear with “Cure For Apathy”, they never look back after that as they work their way through eleven more songs. Sure, things start to blend together after a while, but the songs work and show a confident band who seem to be all about having a good time.
Score: 8 out of 10

Face To Face – Laugh Now, Laugh Later

Face To Face is finally back with a new album that comes after way too many years of waiting. Anyone who has seen them live at the Groezrock festival knows these guys still have what it takes. And while they might not be as well-known as Lagwagon or NOFX, Face To Face is easily as good.

“Laugh Now, Laugh Later” is the band’s seventh album and on it they sound as if they never went away. You get eleven short, fast and highly melodic songs with throbbing bass lines, catchy riffs and plenty of singalong moments. It’s nothing you haven’t heard before but fuck me, this has to be one of the best punkrock albums you’ll hear this summer!
Score: 8 out of 10

The Rural Alberta Advantage - Departing

The folkrockers that make up The Rural Alberta Advantage are back wit the follow-up to their widely acclaimed debut, “Hometowns”. It was that album that got them signed to Saddle Creek (Bright Eyes, Rilo Kiley,…), who have now released “Departing”.

The band simply picks up where they left off with opener “Two Lovers”, a mellow acoustic song about well, two lovers. Other themes that are further explored on “Departing” are small towns and winter in Canada. Yup, themes that lend themselves perfectly to big words like nostalgia and melancholy. In songs like “The Breakup” and “Muscle Relaxants” they up the tempo, thus proving they are very capable of rocking out as well.

Overall this is a pretty good album but it never really hits home like say, Band Of Horses or The Arcade Fire. Decent enough to listen to a bunch of times though but ultimately slightly disappointing.
Score: 6 out of 10

Small Brown Bike – Fell & Found

Small Brown Bike is one of those bands that I just missed out on when I got into this kinda music. What a waste! These guys wrote post-hardcore anthems the way they are supposed to sound, before it evolved into the dribble that it has become. When they first played a reunion show to benefit a friend who was battling leukemia , it became obvious people were still gushing over them. Things picked up from there, resulting in the two “Composite” 7 inches in 2009 and 2010. And now there’s the first new full-length since 2003’s “The River Bed”.

Is it worth listening to? Fuck yeah! Obviously the band members have matured over the years but the subtle guitar melodies, the sweet lyrics and the rocking out are still very much present. With the help of producer J Robbins, they managed to bring out the best in themselves, allowing for the listener to discover new layers with every new listen.

New bands are advised not to listen to songs like “Sleep River Sleep” or “Just Bones” or will run the risk of being extremely discouraged. Everybody else should pick up a copy of “Fell & Found”.
Score: 8 out of 10

Romi Mayes – Lucky Tonight

Romi Mayes is a tough Canadian blues/rock chick who chose a slightly different approach for her latest album. Recorded in one take at a sold-out concert in Winnipeg, “Lucky Tonight” is a live album filled with nothing but new songs.

The live setting gives the whole a raw and more energetic feel, which is further enhanced by The Perpetrators’ Jay Nowicki on lead guitar. Songs like “Don’t Mess With Me”, “Ball And Chain” and “Not My Baby” don’t exactly show a perfect track record when it comes to relationships, but if it means she ends up writing songs like this because of it, then I’m all for it. Sorry miss Mayes!
Score: 7 out of 10

The Pigeon Detectives – Up, Guards And At ‘Em!

The Pigeon Detectives are back with album number three, “Up, Guards And At ‘Em!”. You might expect a bunch of barnburners with a title like that, but compared to “Emergency” the Detectives have slowed down. Which is a shame.

Opener “She Wants Me” does not exactly sound very promising either with its drum loop and processed vocals. But then things switch back to normal sounding drums and guitars and it’s back to business as usual. Normal makes them sound like Kaiser Chiefs or The Strokes but not as good.

As you work your way down the tracklisting, the songs all start to sound alike and things don’t get truly engaging anywhere. The good thing about “Emergency” was the band’s boundless energy, something that has largely disappeared here. It makes “Up, Guards And At ‘Em!” a rather unremarkable album in a scene that is crowded with bands who all sound alike.
Score: 5 out of 10


Channel Zero – Feed ‘Em With A Brick

Fifteen years after “Black Fuel” and hot on the heels of their successful reunion shows in Brussels, Channel Zero is back with a new album. Without guitarist Xavier Carion but with Snot/Soulfly’s Mikey Doling doing his thing with six strings and with Machine Head’s Logan Mader fiddling behind the knobs.

“Feed ‘Em With A Brick” is more rocking and groovy than what we were used to from these guys and with less hooks. Modern thrash metal if you will with balls. The cheesy lyrics are something that you simply have to put up with. But overall this is a pretty straightforward metal album, the likes of which don’t get released often in Belgium. Is that a reason to go nuts over “Feed ‘Em With A Brick”? Hardly. While the material on here is consistent as hell and pretty solid throughout, it isn’t exactly very original and there’s too little variation to keep things truly engaging throughout the album’s entire duration.
Score: 7 out of 10

Thursday – No Devolucion

Is it just me or did the new Thursday album just kinda slide through under the radar? If it isn't just me who didn’t notice “No Devolucion”, then the world is missing out on a seriously fine album. On album number six Rickly and company experiment like there is no tomorrow without ever losing sight of the fact that they need to write actual songs.

The result is a mighty fine collection of songs that operate in the post-rock side of things. Guitar lines swirl all over the place, enhanced by a massive dose of holographic, laser-directed synths that never miss while the bass thumps in all the places that are still open after the drums have passed through. And soaring high above it all is Geoff Rickly’s voice, sounding more restrained and as a result more compelling than ever.

Single “Magnets Caught In A Metal Heart” is the most accessible song on here but it doesn’t mean that the rest of the album is any less enticing. From the ‘ice crystals on the windscreen’ of opener “Fast To The End” to the epic grandeur of “Sparks Against The Sun”, this is the sound of a band stepping out of its comfort zone and truly coming into their own. And looking at the rather impressive back catalog of Thursday, I think that says a lot.
Score: 8.5 out of 10

Wolves Like Us – Late Love

Wolves Likes Us is a new band out of Norway that consists of former members of outfits such as Amulet, Infidels Forever, JR Ewing and Silver. They immediately inked a deal with the ultimate home of the heavy, Prosthetic Records, who are wasting no time with releasing “Late Love”.

Taking cues from the likes of Planes Mistaken For Stars, Quicksand and Drive Like Jehu, this is not your average Prosthetic band. Yet somehow they do fit on the label’s roster. Picture a hardcore version of The Afghan Whigs with some stoner tendencies and you’re actually not that far off the mark. Armed with great riffage, tons of groove and a drummer who’s never content with just providing a beat, these guys claw their way through ten songs and come out stronger on the other side. The only downside are the somewhat flat vocals but hey, I once heard that it’s someone else’s imperfections that makes us love them.
Score: 7 out of 10

Cellout – Superstar Prototype

Once upon a time I think I lost my mind for a while. I liked Limp Bizkit, Linkin Park, Papa Roach and fuck it… let’s just say it… I didn’t even think Staind was all that bad. Luckily that time has long since passed and just like my long hair, it is nothing more than a memory.

Unless it was until I started listening to “Superstar Prototype” by the band Cellout (smart name guys, really smart). They try to bring back the nu metal sounds of Trapt, Trust Company and the abovementioned Papa Roach with a bit of Dope and Disturbed thrown in for good measure. It sounds so ten years ago it’s not even funny anymore. And honestly, they would’ve probably been overlooked back then as well because the material on here really isn’t all that interesting to begin with.
Score: 3.5 out of 10

Cave In – White Silence

Six years after the release of “Perfect Pitch Black”, Cave In strikes back with “White Silence”. And they strike back hard, with opener “White Silence” and “Serpents” immediately setting out to rip you a new asshole. Next up is the 8-minute long slow burner that is “Sing My Loves”. And from there on this album can always go both ways… either these guys are relentless and threatening or somewhat soothing. Much like a delusional madman cradling a baby. They unleash hell in “Vicious Circles” and even forge off into Converge territory with “Centered” before slowing down towards the end of the album with the partially acoustic “Reanimation”.

Cave In has always been a pretty eclectic bunch… just hold the scathing “Until Your Heart Stops”, the space-rocking “Jupiter” and the radio-friendly “Antenna” next to each other and you’ll see what I mean. And I’m not even talking about the countless side-projects here. What I’m getting to here… because there is a point hidden in this rambling… when Cave In gets together you never really know what to expect. However, “White Silence” kinda binds it all together nicely. It’s a little something of all the band’s different faces stitched together by a decent plastic surgeon. It may take some time before you get in, but the courting is worth it in the end!
Score: 7.5 out of 10

Sharks – The Joys Of Living

People in the music industry are always looking for the next big thing. So when one band makes it to the big time, record labels immediately send out representatives to scour the earth and hunt down another band that sounds alike so they can profit from the abovementioned band’s success. Rise Records is one of the labels that does pretty much nothing else.

So when The Gaslight Anthem blew up, the people in charge told their A&R reps to not come back before they had found the label’s very own version. Said reps were forced to travel all the way to the UK which is where they found Sharks, a band that mixes up The Gaslight Anthem’s sound with a bit of The Clash and the Buzzcocks. The result is actually pretty damn solid if you ask me and definitely the best thing Rise Records has released in quite some time.

“The Joys Of Living” is not a new album but rather a collection of the band’s first two EPs along with two new songs. Curious to see what they’ll come up with next? Well, that makes two of us. Even though I have to say that the two new songs (“Sweet Harness” and “The Joys Of Living”) are the weakest offerings on here.
Score: 7 out of 10

The Fucking Cops – Fuck You Up With Some Truth

The Fucking Cops are a relatively new outfit who are about to fuck you up with some truth. They sling catchy melodies and punchy riffs at you that are wrapped up in six tasty pop-punk morsels. Kinda like those first At The Drive-In releases and not all that different from what Iron Chic is doing right now. Unfortunately they aren’t quite up to the level of those bands. But imagine how good they will sound once you’ve had a couple of beers at that basement show!
Score: 6 out of 10