4 out of 5
Label: Hawthorne Street Records
Produced by: Scott Adamson (recorded by)
The Suicide Note stuff is good, but man, the Breather Resist tracks are really good, and it’s hard to compare. Even if the opening 2-minute blast of Rock N’ Mass sounds like American Nervoso-era Botch (recorded with We Are the Romans sharpness!), Breather Resist bring such intensity to it, I’d be willing to give it all a pass if it was all of this caliber. But then followups Bad With Dates and Working Title just absolutely kill it via the most amped-up hardcore punk stylings you’ll have heard, even nearly two decades past this recording. The balance of gang vocals and math breakdowns to just straight-forward pummeling is tight, with both the 40 seconds of Dates and Working Title’s more expansive 4-minute stretch feeling equally dense and defined. There is no way to not just be enraptured by the fury of these three tracks.
Suicide Note followup with quality hardcore, it’s just not as intense, and not as defined. SN bring in some good dynamics, and their sound is appreciably a bit more raw. Trigger and How Not to Care do the job effectively, with Max Wedge having a Ramones-y buzz to it, and then closer (Mama Had A) Skull Baby like… The Hives? (I mean, it’s a cover of a late 80s track from Didjits, so more rightly, I’m ragging on The Hives for riffing on someone else.) These two changeups to the sound are pretty fun after a lot of screaming and shouting, but again, it prevents Suicide Note from emerging with as clear of a sound.