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Review: Verse Aggression

Author: Gen Meehan Originally posted on xsisterhoodx.com Tuesday, 06 January 2009

Verse, one of the truest and longest-running hardcore bands,  has defied all logic of today’s hardcore scene with the release of their third album, “Aggression”. The album is lyrically confrontational and frontman Sean Murphy’s harsh vocals are released from his body like he has nothing left inside, creating a powerful listening experience for those who are passionate and politically savvy. ” The first track on the album begins with a calm, melodic instrumental piece and abruptly moves into the first powerful lyric; “They’ve got themselves a new spin on the story.” The break’s in Murphy’s voice express his clear urgency.

Hardcore over the past decade has been beaten down with lyrics pertaining to nothing, large gauges, a tough guy act, and breakdowns that take no musical talent. This album resurrected the hardcore scene, answering the question “What are these kids so angry about?” While political lyrics could put off a lot of listeners, this is not just another album about how bad the Bush administration is. The passion put into the album expresses the disapproval of our destructive war, a failing economy, and foreign policy. “I have watched people go through some really hard times. I feel like I’m trying to not only speak for myself, but anyone that might feel the way I feel,” Murphy said. Not only did “Aggression” resurrect the scene lyrically, but also musically, setting a standard for what modern hardcore is really about.


While listeners are claiming that this Verse album is the best hardcore album of the year, even beating out Have Heart, it must be noted that Verse is more on the risky side of doing things. While they create a sound of what true modern hardcore punk should sound like, they are not afraid to try new things with melody. Verse also is able to vary the sound of their vocals from whispers to shouts, not to jar the listener,  but only to capture the importance of the words. The vocals are by far the most impressive part of this album. Along with the heavy guitars that you can hear the emotion in, they make listening to the album much like swimming in chocolate, soo dense, yet sooo sweet!

Verse Is a band hailing from Providence, Rhode Island.  This is Verses’ first release signed to Bridge Nine Records. Their previous albums, “Rebuild” and “From Anger and Rage”, were released on Rivalry Records.  For this album, the band was able to take many different aspects of hardcore and refine them, creating a perfect blend of melody and harmony through heavy guitars. Bridge Nine provided the band with a new top-notch production, allowing the catchiness of the music to hold a strong essence without taking away from the passionate lyrics. Because this band has proven to stand the test of time by releasing a third album (unlike many in modern hardcore) and earned its name as “Rhode Island’s longest-running hardcore band”, listeners are astounded and excited to see what else Bridge Nine has to offer for Verse.

Mother, wife, small business owner. www.justbuttons.org

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