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January 2, 2005

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It's easy to get disillusioned by hardcore. One look at or listen to most of what's being pawned off as hardcore these days is enough to feel depressed about the state of the scene. So when a band like Paint it Black come around with a new album, the follow-up to their 2003 debut, CVA, and fucking nail it on the head the way hardcore is supposed to be played (keys: passion, honesty, integrity, dissension), it just puts a smile on my face and makes everything okay. A great hardcore band like this can cancel out 1,000 shitty, ill-inspired bands with their coordinated stage moves and haughty attitudes. Paradise just reeks real, important, and driving. Fronted by ex-Lifetime/Kid Dynamite guitarist Dan Yemin, Paint it Black is one-of-a-kind. A lot of the elements to their sound are throwbacks to late '80s hardcore (think Minor Threat, Black Flag, and Faith), but it's the modern elements of melody, tempo, and kindled energy that make this relevant today. Okay, granted, even if they sounded exactly like Minor Threat, that'd be better than most of the shit invading my eardrums lately, but they really do add to that sound, so time to buck up and pay attention. Catchy, fun, inspiring, angering, educational, furious, beautiful... this is hardcore. And you must have it.

Flex Your Head

Jason Schreurs