THIEVES AND ASSASSINS: Self-titled: 7” EP

An extremely strong debut, much akin to Strike Anywhere’s Chorus of One. It’s word-heavy, melodic hardcore—ganged up vocals, the buzzy-hummy quality of mid-period Bad Religion, and incorporates the making-musical-nooses knack of songwriting of prime Good Riddance. Yet, as is sometimes the case with debuts, I think they’re trying to fit a bit too much into each song, and that lends a claustrophobic feeling to the EP as a whole, but it’s definitely a band to watch in the future.

 –todd (Iron Pier Recordings, www.mindsetoverhaul.com)