RISING UP RISING DOWN: Monster Crusher: LP

Took me a few listens to get into this one, but after a couple plays I’m starting to get a handle on their particular vision, and, yeah, it’s a monster crusher indeed. This shit is brutal, sir. Discordant and angular, but rounded and fattened out by a thick guitar sound (another Dead Air Studios job), full of odd time signatures and crazy stops and starts without the least bit of pretension or hair-flicking sass. They’re painting one hell of a bleak picture here (lyrically, you can use Tragedy’s “the world is a bright and wonderful place” template to give you an idea of the rainbow-colored posi-vibes shooting off of this one) and, musically, it’s like a pitch-perfect blend of Hellnation’s relentlessness and the battery-on-the-tongue minor-chord grimace of Swing Kids. I think it leans more heavily towards crust and d-beat than it does tight pants and hair products that people generally associate with screamo nowadays, but Rising Up Rising Down’s striking me as a good enough band to give fans of either genre the piss shivers. Nice work.

 –keith (Maple Leaf)