HOT ROD CIRCUIT – Reality’s Coming Through

What do you need to do when your one of the premier emo punk rock bands and you want to expand your sound to a whole new level? Simple you release a album titled “Reality Runs Through” and then show the world there’s more to the punk record label you wear so proudly on your sleeve. From the start of “Inhabit” to the closing of Moonlight Sunlight, Hot Rod Circuit are constantly exploring other genres of rock. With steady riffs and strong harmonies it’s hard to find what flaws may lay within. From the strongest track’s on the set “Tell The Truth” and “The Best You Ever Knew’ with their radio friendly chords, front man Andy Jackson adds just the right amount of heartfelt lyrics while never sounding repetitive. Although the same cant be said for “Fear The Sound”, when Jackson shouts out “I got my hands around your neck” it comes of more cliche than original which takes a little away from the song‘s intense beat.

The backbone still lies with Jay Russell and new members of Hot Rod Circuit, Dan Duggins and Brian Kiss. Still it is the guitar playing of Casey Prestwood that really makes a statement and guilds the album through from start to finish. Look for Chris Carrabba of Dashboard Confessional to guest on “Unfaithful” a follow member of the ever growing Vagrant family. With their refreshing ideas and clean sound that even incorporates steel guitar, Hot Rod Circuit seem destined to out grow of the style that got them here, and embark on a rock and roll journey that would fit nicely on to a segment of MTV’s “120 Minutes” from the late eighties or early nineties. With eleven songs clocking in at a mere 35 minutes, Hot Rod Circuit leaves you wanting more and from the sounds of it, there will be a lot more to come from Jackson and company.

HOPE – Feeling Like A Buck-Fifty

This Cd actually bored me. I almost fell asleep because of it. I’m serious it really bored me I couldn’t wait for it to end it was so boring. It’s a typical done way too many times same ole emo, pop punk album. Nothing different, nothing done that someone else hasn’t done already, this entire band is less then special. In fact they’re more like copycats. They try to copy the usage of an acoustics’ guitar in “Drowning,” to try and sound like Dashboard Confessional. Which really ticks me off you lame people never do that again you make Chris’s talent look bad and I happen to like that band a lot so stop it for the love of all that is Emo.

The songs are boring; they have no real initial intent to them. They lag excitement and if they’re trying to be emotional they lagged that too. The song “Stinkin,’ Cryin,’ Beggin,'” say the same line over and over and over again which makes this album also very annoying. Yepp they sound like most crappy emo bands the lead singer has that horrible whining sound to his voice. The kind of sound that makes you wish you were never born with ears. The music is repeated in every song this whole album just is so annoying. There just no excitement no rhythm in the whole album. It’s just blah.

Maybe this is an album for boring people. Or maybe the band just really has no talent what so ever. Yeah I’m going to go with the no talent excuse. I honestly don’t even know how to review such a boring piece of crap. The music was dull; the lyrics are crap mainly on the fact that the lead voice is very annoying with that stupid whine. So you know what I say buy this album then go burn it! Protest crappy music!!!!!


I have been waiting all my life for a hardcore band that can deliver a dose of melodic hardcore that truly delivers. With raw vocals and melodic hardcore guitars, this album will leave you bleeding on the floor grasping for life. Before we jump into comparing this band to every other screaming hardcore crazy, wanna be scene band I just want to say the production on this record is mind blowing. You don’t really ever hear many real drumbeats anymore, but this record breaks actually have a real person sitting in the drum seat. The biggest thing that really brings this generic sounding band to the next level is the pure rage you feel when blasting thru the CD from start to finish. Might I add the cover art is neat and I really like the art inside as well. I appreciate these sorts of things. Oh and read the lyrics, they are amazing as well. Here is a sample lyric that spoke to me.

“Self timed and tranquilized. Placement service for a stationary clock. We keep living through the same day. Waking up to fall back asleep. Empty vessel under watch and key. Sleeper cell.”

Note worthy tracks include Her Article and Hauling Sharp. (My favorites anyways)


Everything Is Beautiful When You Don’t Look Down

Everything Is Beautiful When You Don’t Look Down is Glasseater’s debut album for Victory Records. I’ll be honest when I heard they were switching from Fearless to Victory I thought that a little more focus on the hardcore aspect of their sound would be represented on this disc. I was pretty much wrong in every way.

The CD starts off with a furious cord progression and interesting drumming making you think you are about to hear a harder song. Then just as quickly as it starts it changes into a very slow paced but still amazing song. The CD overall reminds me a lot of the first half of their S/T CD. This isn’t a bad thing at all.

Now I hope I’m not scaring you by saying this CD is a pretty slow paced CD. It really isn’t as most songs start off fast and end the same way they began. If you are worried about the hardcore aspect of Glasseater being gone, don’t worry, as traces remain present in many songs. The CD is loaded with interesting metal and melodic guitar lines and some of the best drumming I have heard from this band. The lyrics are also very well written while sung with great passion over very interesting music. I couldn’t believe how much I enjoyed this CD altogether for it was the exact opposite of what I was expecting. If you want to hear one of the better albums that has come out this year I suggest picking this one up on August 26th when it comes out.


Why We Fight

Finally some good ole fashion punk, this is what makes me love my job. Listening to CD’s like this that make you think of so many punk bands that you love.

The music is great drums played loud enough to hear with guitars roaring in the background. Produced and Mixed by Aaron Sprinkle. Guitars played by Ryan and Bob who do such a great job for their debut album along with drums played by Dustin sound amazing and in sync with bass line by Josh. These guys are just playing real punk and it sounds great. The way they play loud hard and fast but still allow you to hear and understand the vocalist Nic and keys by Jacob. There are a lot of different styles and things they use in this album that make it all come together.

The vocals are lyrics are great the sound reminds me of bands like Finch, Further Seems Forever, Divit, Deviates and so many other bands. His voice emotional yet not whiny and his lyrics are written with strength and tone it brings everything all together.

All in all I really like this album, it gave me no headaches and these guys sound really good so I suggest everyone give them a chance and go support them buy this CD you lazy bum. Quit being so cheap. Yeah you know you are or if your going to be cheap then download it but listen b/c if you don’t your be missing out on a lot.


Ribbons & Sugar

It’s the second release from Gatsby’s American Dream, out July 1st ”Ribbons & Sugar” I have to say better then the debut. Which hey its always great to out do yer first CD. These guys have definitely grown as musicians.

It’s heard clearly in their first track “The Taming,” an instrumental introduction to the album sounding uniquely with that of a little Alice In Chains background. As the Cd goes on the music gets harder with the bass line and drums inclined with the rhythm. They’ve taken a new approach toward their musical application and I have to say I love this approach better then the first. The opening guitar solos are done with beauty as in track three “Epilogue” and in the ending of some songs as “We’re Not Orphans.” And from here to there is a drum solo just a few beats every once and awhile. I love the music on this album.

The lyrics are clearer along with the lead vocals voice he’s definitely undergone maturity as an artist in this album. His voice is so “wow.” He sings with the kind of tone you rarely hear with an artist emotional yet meaningful, yet his lyrical usage is so complex and toward life’s depressions in a since. But the lyrics don’t depress you or are the sort of cry your eyes out emo. They’re more unexplainable. This album is just perfection…in music and lyrics. I love it…this whole Cd and the band, these guys have just blown me away that much with their new sound and style. I strongly suggest that you check this Cd out when it’s released next month. These guys are absolutely amazing.