Ken and Skip standing outside the Turning Point van, 1991, Photo courtesy of: TP
This was an interesting poll to me because the results were exactly in the order I voted. Let's break it down...
Turning Point won as I expected, but they really dominated more than I would have predicted. "Broken" is one hell of a song, not only for the fact that it's great, but for the fact that it was written by young suburban dudes who only a year and a half before were getting passed off as a goofy YOT clone, complete with hooded-sweatshirt-dude cartoons and generic mosh parts. Obviously I love all eras of TP and the demo is one of the best ever - so I'm not knocking it...but they had their critics and weren't initially heralded for originality...or at least weren't expected to go the route of writing songs with this much depth.
"Broken" is a perfect example of a band seriously progressing while still staying in the realm of hardcore. Things are kicked up a solid notch above what they did on the LP, there is a heavy DC meets Verbal Assault vibe, and some real super tight musicianship - each member just delivers in a way that makes the later era TP material stand out. I gave TP the vote here just because I think of them when I think of the Rebuilding comp. Their track just seems like the voice of the record and like it was specifically written for the comp and not just a throw away extra song.
The Burn track is a wall of power...raw, hard, ugly - and if you asked me tomorrow, I'd give this song my #1 slot. Obviously a pre-EP recording, there's a spontaneous and uncalculated nature to this recording that is totally absent on the EP, especially in Chaka's delivery. Drown is one of my favorite Burn tracks, and I think the EP version is just so flawless that it overshadows what appears on the Rebuilding comp. Fucking great track. "As a unit...what we could have been." You're moshing. Always dug Gavin's extra little note bender at the end of the melter on this recording...I think I'd pay a lot of money to just hear various takes of his raw guitar tracks from any Burn session.
GB crept into 3rd place ahead of No Escape. Biscuit Power is a great anthem, in fact, it's actually one of my more favorite GB songs as it's early, chaotic, goofy GB at their finest. Yet it never really fit in on this comp to me. I always imagine Chuck Miller somehow just snagged a recording of the tune and got it OK'd and thought "alright!" Thing is, I always viewed the Rebuilding comp as featuring 3 relatively new or brand new bands that were kinda the current newest crop of HC bands pushing things into unchartered territory. And then there's GB, who had already been around a few years, and the song of theirs here is a very early one. Just odd. Either way, I'd say Biscuit Power would beat a ton of other songs in head to head competition, but a monster Burn song and one of TP's best tunes provide too much competition. Again, you could ask me tomorrow and I may throw this in the front spot.
No Escape rounded things out, and while I've never disliked No Escape, they've never grown on me to the extent I thought they would have as I've grown up. On paper, No Escape has always sounded PERFECT: Editor of Boiling Point going bonkers with dudes playing heavy, brooding hardcore that has some thought behind it. But I don't know. Silenced is a solid track, probably better than 75% of all comp tracks that would come out anything in the next ten years...but it grabbed last place for me and also took the final spot in the voting.
Definitely a solid comp that marks a period in (east coast) HC pretty well.
Thanks for voting and feel free to comment with your feedback! -Gordo DCXX
Skip with Turning Point at the BBQ Iguana, DC, Photo: Dave Brown
Thursday, May 20, 2010
Posted by DOUBLE CROSS at 11:07 PM