CODE ORANGE KIDS: Love Is Love / Return to Dust: CD

May 08, 2013

In many ways, Love Is Love / Return to Dust is exactly what I expected. Raw, abrasive metallic hardcore which occasionally melts into melodic, almost borderline ambient parts before returning to metallic chaos. That this CD is exactly what I expected is part of the problem I have with it. The sonic path tread by Code Orange Kids is well worn, blazed by bands who pushed, and continue to push, the boundaries of extreme music. When treading in the wake of such creative forces, imitation only gets washed away. To survive takes more than competent musicianship, of which Code Orange Kids have plenty, but also enough creativity to make something that stands apart. An example would be on the track “Nothing (The Rat).” Here, from the buildup of drums and bass, into the thundering song, and all the way into the washed-out outro, everything about this track blew me away. The breakdown in the middle, before the feedbacking ending, is particularly excellent. Unfortunately, I found the rest of this album lacked the spark which made this track so good for me. Instead, it was a lot of tracks that sounded like stuff I’d heard before.

 –Paul J. Comeau (Deathwish)