The Kids We Used To Be
Having hammered away in the U.K. hardcore underground since 2005, Your Demise started grabbing a lot of attention with 2009’s Ignorance Never Dies. A thunderous affair, it hit home as hard as Hatebreed at their most pissed off while vocalist George Noble’s snarling lyrics unloaded a ton of vitriol over any ears pointed in their direction. But, things change, and tired of the tyrannical way in which Noble ran the band, the frontman was ousted and Ed McRae (ex-Centurion) was brought on board, and The Kids We Used To Be sees the band not only coming back stronger but now infused with an infectious optimism that has redefined them.
“Miles Away,” which roars to life after surly opener “MMX,” is frankly the best song the quintet have put their name to yet, delivered with sledgehammer force and with the kind of hooky chorus that demands you scream along until your larynx is in tatters. They manage to revisit this intensity often over the record’s 38 minutes: “Teenage Lust” in particular is searing, as is the thunderous “Shine On” (which features guest vocals by the Devil Wears Prada’s Mike Hranica); the old-school mosh monster “Like A Broken Record” will probably result in many broken noses in sweaty venues. Elsewhere, “Life Of Luxury” wields a more plaintive tone, and they rope in Mike Duce of Lower Than Atlantis to add a clean, Walter Schreifels-esque vocal to the chorus, which is a perfect counterpoint to the tumult surrounding it. Closer “XO” blends passages tainted with a near melancholy and breakneck thrashing, the contrasts playing perfectly off each other.
The overall strength in The Kids We Used To Be stems from the fact that while Your Demise wholly conform to genre norms, they infuse everything they do with so much energy and honesty that they manage to sound fresh and new, which is a damn hard thing to do in hardcore these days. It certainly doesn’t hurt that it’s a lot more hooky than what has preceded it, yet at no point do you feel that they’ve thrown a melody in for the sake of it, and it certainly never serves to blunt the force of their attack.