How pretentious could this review be? “Raw Nerve’s swan song, four songs of intense disgust for everything: for their culture, their scene, and themselves. Layers of feedback and noise interspersed with raging moments of hate before curling back into a ball to quietly seethe.” Does that sound like something I would write? Yeah, kinda. But what is this record, really? It’s hard to write about Raw Nerve because I can’t really think of very many bands in the last ten years that have been so divisive in a matter of simple aesthetics. It took, I believe, a fair amount of audacity for them to not only continue forging a style that so many viewed as obtuse or pretentious, but to hone it. They made it their own. This record is not a rager like Midnight, but there is somehow more tension. It’s a reflection of the state of the band as people at the time, trying like hell to hold onto what they had made for each other. The lyrics on this recording are the best the band had written, as Ralph’s style of writing bleak, minimalist rants finally came through into something cohesive and pointed instead of vague and distracting. Raw Nerve were not the greatest hardcore band of the last twenty-five years, but they were the perfect five people in the same spot at the same time, and in the end they fell apart just like all their songs.
–Ian Wise (Youth Attack, ihateyouthattack.com)