Tuesday, June 28, 2011

CENSORED SOUND - 'Shadows' Album Review

These scene has awaited a long time for Censored Sound's new album, entitled Shadows. We should not forget that these guys are no rookies in the scene, being the oldest (and for a long time, the only) Greek band which played old school hardcore with lyrics in English. Therefore it is nice to see that they are back with another album of pure old school intensity, which remains pretty much uninfluenced by the trends of today. In these 15 songs, what we get is fast and aggressive US style hardcore with some Champion-esque / neo youth crew touches on the guitar, as well as hints of rock n roll and crust.

To be honest it took me a while for this album to grow on me, as it is 100% ferocious and the vocals are rather extreme, screeched in your face to the point you start to feel sorry for the dude probably destroying his voice. However, when you put some time in this album, it starts paying you back. As it is not overly catchy, it needs some attention to get the most out of it. Then the underlying melodies (especially on the guitar - great work!) start to come out and grab you, making the experience more enjoyable with every listen. I personally find this album is best heard when you're alone in your room, with the lyric sheet in front of you and your thoughts all gathered in one place.

To sum up, this is not the easy listening hardcore record that is suited for 'cool' kids' parties and BBQs. It is dark, heavy, serious, pissed off and in a sense this is the way hardcore music is meant to be. Shadows is really filled with passionate music, wall grinding riffs, high-thinking lyrical ideas and a lot more that presents the listener with a challenge and an exceptional listening experience.

P.S. We should also mention that this is a totally DIY release (you wont find no label names, sponsored studios and shops here), which is great. There are also some guest vocals by the cream of the crop of the Athens punk scene (including Vodka Jrs and Despite Everything). This is Greek HC2011, so you better get a slice of it!

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