Tuesday, 17 February 2015

Madball "Set It Off" (1994)

Madball are a Hardcore group from New York who formed in the late 80s and released this, their first album, in 1994, a post prime era for the Hardcore Punk / Crossover Thrash sound they deliver so boldly on this record. It exemplifies the energetic, attitude driven approach laid down by Hardcore bands in the 80s and delivers them in an easy to digest package that makes for a reasonable debut record.

In twenty six minutes Madball shred through 14 tracks of fist pumping, adrenaline soaked aggression. Focused tight palm mute crunching and power chord slamming, the guitars guide these songs to their grooves fit for mosh dancing. A ruthless atmosphere is built as the kit punches tight bouncy rhythms between the crisp snare and thudding base kick, the guitars delivering riff after riff of Hardcore fueled aggression. To no surprise the themes put across through Cricen's gruff shouts are of mental attitude. Pride, honor and respect, telling stories of personal betrayal, justice and the strength to deal with the hardships people put each other through.

The album starts of with a bang as their best songs slam down the thrashy aggressive dance friendly riffs to get you pumped and fired up with an attitude, dropping the tightest grooves and catchy shouts the record has to offer, as it stretches on the intensity loosens and songs get shorted, never quite reaching the energy and momentum the record starts with. Its a decent record, but only in its best moments.

Favorite Songs: Set It Off, Lockdown, New York City, Down By Law
Rating: 5/10