DROWNINGMAN: Don’t Push Us When We’re Hot: CD

How about Paint It Black if they were more tech and less positive? Or a band like JR Ewing if they had to listen to nothing but Cut the Shit a week before they went into the studio? What I mean is, there’s the bouncing, spit-flying-through-the-air feel of old and new school hardcore at work here, but it’s an element that’s constantly fighting for dominance over something a lot darker and more precise, like if Dillinger Escape Plan were all considering mass suicide and wanted to put out a concept album about it. Don’t Push Us… is both catchy and angular, welcoming and incredibly alienating all at once. They’re smart, they’re pissed off, and as songs like “Dude Status: Revoked” and “Major Disappointment Reporting for Duty” document, you can write songs that are both reasonably magnetic and ugly as fuck.

 –keith (Thorp)