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Strung Out
The Element Of Sonic Defiance
(Fat Wreck Chords)


Strung Out are back with a vengeance on The Element Of Sonic Defiance, a tight and engaging punk record. These veterans of the skate-punk circuit have enough experience to be sure. They've released three full-length a lbums and 2 EPs prior to this. They've also spent a couple of summers ou t on the Warped Tour and playing with So-Cal contemporaries such as NOFX, Bad Religion, Pennywise...you get the drift, right? One thing about Strung Out, they're tight as Hell and yield a high-octane brand of punk.

Beginning with a sci-fi sample, "Mission To Mars" bursts into sonic defia nce to be sure. Their tight punk constructs frequently make your head wa nna bob. Their talent for "breaking it down" into tight drum digressions adds to the element of chaos. Drummer Jordan Burns continues to exhibit his stellar abilities on the tight "Scarecrow." But tightness just does n't follow the drummer: the dual guitar attack of Jake Kiley and Robert R amos is so tight that sometimes it's hard to know there's two guitarists. It is definitely a power building situation. "Scarecrow" flows into "Savant" without missing a beat. Again, power is key, as Jason's Cruz's vocals build to a roar without him entering the shouting world. That's control. His tone augments the melodic flow of "Everyday Game" perfectly. After another intriguing drum intro, guitar assumes a larger melodic role for "Razorblade." They throw in a metal guitar solo segment that just p ops in out of nowhere, catching you extremely off-guard. "Blew" continue s to demonstrate their ability to create thick melodic punk ala The Clash 2E This is not Green Day styled pop based punk. This is prime Brit pun k-pop, a much fuller and thicker punk that hinges less on speed and more on melody and over-all power. It ends with another quirky sci-fi sample. Let's not forget to mention Chris Aiken's powerfully driving bass propu lsion. "Jackie-O" lets him start out with a fat progression. His speedy playing helps the band maintain that power for the whole EP.

Strung Out is a perfect example of solid stake punk. Their tightness is one of their strongest assets as it allows them to assert their power eff ectively. If they were sloppier, the power of their melodic progressions and influences would be lost in the mush. This is a prime specimen of t rue, modern Southern California punk. What do you wanna bet that they ar e a huge blast to see live? If you're strung out and need a punk fix, bu y this EP, it should do the trick.

-tom topkoff

Track Listing:
1. Mission To Mars
2. Scarecrow
3. Savant
4. Blew
5. Everyday Game
6. Razorblade
7. Jackie-O
8. Mephisto

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Mike Doughty



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