Burning Love – Down So Long b/w Medicine Man

3 out of 5

Label: Deathwish

Produced by: Josh Korody

Competent hardcore punk that’s temporarily elevated by the A-side’s tense build-and-release setup and beat changes.

Punk, being a somewhat – generally – limited 3-chordish genre, is differentiated by some surface level elements: your vocalist; how loud you play; how fast you play. Burning Love definitely get some nods on that first bit, with Chris Colohan’s searing guttural snarl pretty hard to ignore. They’re also plenty loud, but not any more than other punk / hardcore punkers; Josh Korody’s production doesn’t do much to bring out anything besides Chris and the guitars, so the drums and bass are just rhythm. And BL does some work to dodge around that third bit on A-side Down So Long, subverting the headfirst punk vibe by breaking the song down at points and building it back up, allowing us to better hear some nuance in the bass and guitar interplay. Medicine Man mostly ditches this for straight ahead punk, though, and with both tracks featuring somewhat typical – though not stupid – lyrics about depression and drugs, there’s not much to stand out when the group goes down the standard punk route, though I bet it’s fun live.

Digital also features the track Secret Solace, which is a good balance between the two above-mentioned styles.