MALE BONDAGE: Self-titled: 7” EP

Braced myself for some dopey, good-natured hardcore stuff based on the band name, cover art, and song titles like “Violent Cravings” and “Bondage Men,” but no, the music’s pretty sophisticated, with guitars that aren’t afraid to stray off and do their own thang. Not a thrash beat to be found. Been a good spell since this sub-sub-style was de rigueur, so it actually feels a bit fresh-airy.

 –jimmy (Sleepwalk, sleepwalkrecordings.com)