Raw Nerves: Futile Efforts 12"
2nd LP from this Portland hardcore band that toured with Stripmines last summer, and it's a HUGE step up from the band's earlier material. They have a new singer this time around, and his hoarse bellow is powerful indeed. Musically, the label description drops some 90s hardcore references like Citizens Arrest and Born Against, and I can definitely see that... like those bands, Raw Nerves play fast hardcore, yet they're as unafraid of some metallic palm-muting here and there as they are of a weird, Voivod-ish guitar chord there. Like those 90s bands (as well as Life's Blood and maybe even Deathreat, come to think of it) there's also a very subtle youth crew current lurking somewhere deep within this. I like that this is band is sort of blatantly uncool in their influences and their willingness to address political issues, but unless you only listen to d-beat there's really no denying the power of this record... a really scorching LP. Man in Decline Records