This CD rules. It came out in 1984 and 1985 on Dischord, two records, one CD. I'd never heard of them til I listened to the "Alive And Kicking" comp with the song "Walk The Line" which is amazing, but isn't the best song on the CD. Apparently the guys were originally in Iron Cross, but I find that really hard to believe. This is really melodic, and I guess first generation emo, whatever the fuck that means. It's dark, thoughtful punk rock. Totally up my alley. It opens with a song called Retrospect, which is all about the same thing I've been doing for the last while. Questioning this lifestyle, wondering if it's really worth the self destruction that it brings. Looking back and wondering what's what. The song itself is also killer, lyrical content aside. It's melodic but still angry. It kinda reminds me some stuff on Living In Darkness by Agent Orange, not sound wise, just feeling wise. Oscar's Eye is good if not a bit slow but doesn't drag on like I feel most slow songs do. Fill A Void is next and is great
Chutes And Ladders opens up the second record and rules at doing so. It's a little harder/faster than the stuff on the first record, but retains the melodic aspect of it all. Burn No Bridges maintains the trend of a little harder than most of the first record. It seems a little bit more angry. It's a tad less singy and more impatient and spat out. Maybe intense? I dunno, more something and less something else. Walk The Line is on next, and it's a cleaner more produced version of the single that I don't like as much. It seems kind of like they redid it and lost some of the feeling that the original has. Kind of like a band that's been playing a song for 20 years and are only playing it because they know everyone loves it, but they don't identify with it anymore. It's still good, but it's obviously missing something. Take It Back is next and makes up for the missing emotion in the last song. Someone's really bugging him in this song, and I bet it's a girl. It's a solid song and is the best song on the second record, maybe even the whole CD.
4A.M. kinda sucks, I skip it. Head closes out the second record and is pretty disjointed. It's also seven minutes long. Most of that is some stupid shit that happens at the end, a bunch of ambiancey music with the singer dude talking over top of it, almost screaming at points. Then it breaks back into what you think is going to be the song, but falls apart after that and turns into more boring instrumental shit. Too post-Damaged Black Flaggy for my tastes. I skip that too. After that it's the single version of Phobias which I don't like any more than the other version. The Spy is next, and is a little one minute long interlude type song. Surfy, good, short.
The single version of Walk The Line. Everything about this version is better. It's raw-er, and has more passion to it. It's slower than the other version, but for some reason that doesn't bug me at all. I guess it doesn't need to be fast to be good or something. That's news to me. Over all, the two records on this disc are two of the lost gems in American punk rock history. It's really too bad that they're so overlooked, as both of them really really shine at points. You can get the CD here or you can get them on cassette individually from here.