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The Unseen - Internal Salvation - Hellcat Records

by Jade Blackmore at 8AM, Aug. 3rd, 2007
unseen 1. The Brutal Truth (Intro) 1:21
2. Such Tragedy 2:18
3. At Point Break 1:56
4. Right Before Your Eyes 2:09
5. Torn and Shattered (Nothing Left) 2:45
6. Break Away 2:14
7. Let It Go 2:40
8. No Direction 2:55
9. In Your Place 2:49
10. Left For Dead 2:35
11. Step Inside Take Your Life 1:28
12. Act the Part 2:38
13. Talking Bombs 2:38

It's hard to be a streetpunk band for more than a few years, hell, a few months, without delving into the cliché bag of fist-pimping tricks. But Boston hardcore band The Unseen manage to sound fresh without wavering from their initial sound on their second release for Hellcat, Internal Salvation. Despite being around since 1993, Mark Unseen & company have retained their signature seething anger, political themes and shotgun fast guitars and haven't succumbed to the Hot Topic punk trends or mellowed with age. This is good news for fans who like hardcore punk with a dash of Slayer/Pantera metal lingering in the background.

Internal Salvation's CD cover might be a little confusing if you're not familiar with the band or their other releases. With a cover pic of a skeletal statue of an angel colored with dripping mascara and drops of blood, this could be a death metal CD. But when you open up the CD and look at the band's picture, you breathe a sigh of relief. Not a pentagram in sight.Thankfully, it's East Coast hardcore all the way, in the vein of Sick of It All, Murphy's Law, and label mates Dropkick Murphys.

The CD intro Brutal Truth begins with Goth church organ and segues into hardcore-enhanced layering of broadcast news sound bites. Such Tragedy assaults the senses with its throat bursting vocals and features catchy riffing underneath its furious front layer. It may take a few listens to hear this.

A melodic background riff provides counterpoint to the guitar and drum rampage on At Point Break. Subtle musical inflections dot the songs on Internal Salvation and prevent the tracks from bleeding into one another. Left for Dead weaves in and out of the hardcore pace of the other cuts, while Step Inside..Take Your Life runs with it.

Internal Salvation may not have the Oi! influences of Lower Class Crucifixion or the lightning-fast assault of Explode, but it stays true to the band's hardcore roots with enough well-placed musical disparities to keep things interesting.

Hellcat Records
The Unseen/MySpace

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