Kicking off with distortion guitar feedback fading in, the pounding drums ramp up the energy as the sticks make their way around the kit, striking the rising toms, signaling whats about to land. New York Hardcore legends Madball jump straight into the action with all the hallmarks, gang shouts, thrashing riffs and slamming grooves fit to get the crowds moving, spinning in circles, hardcore dancing and jumping of the stage. One can hear it all but that's because we have heard it all before. For The Cause is the bands ninth full length in their now thirty year career.
This blog will be short and sweet, their isn't too much to talk about from my perspective because the record does so little wrong yet so little new. The band pull together with a tight set of songs that deploy all the same riffs, techniques and cliches a Hardcore fan could want. Its got energy, attitude and aggression the likes of which we have heard time and time again. The lyrics circle the same topics of pride, strength and integrity spun through different analogies and formed into hooks. Not even the presence of Ice-T makes much an impact in this straight forward record.
Once Id got my Hardcore kick from the record its repeated spins left little impact on me, a lack of experimentation or aiming beyond the scope leaves these songs feeling weak beyond the ability to hit that certain vibe, which it does well. The records biggest strength is production, everything is crisp, cutting, sharp and lean, with the right Hardcore flavor. The drums are especially snappy with a gorgeous clapping snare that hits hard without piercing through. Unfortunately my enjoyment of For The Cause was limited by the records own limitation within a sound the stick very strictly too.