Cruel Hand, who are signed to Hopeless Records, released their new album this week, ‘The Negatives’, the Maine natives are rising stars on the scene, and will be supporting Real Friends and Neck Deep across the US from October 4th and you can find (sort of) a stream on youtube of the album on the Hopeless Records page.
First impressions, I found the guitars are awesome on this record, to the point of barbaric, just listen to ‘Battery Steele’, a mainly instrumental song to hear the sound from them which is just amazing – I feel also there’s been a shift from hardcore to a more pop punk vibe, which is definitely more punk than pop, trust me (the sound frightened the dog) and there’s a ferocious sound to this album that is really uncomparable to many bands on this scene – it’s a record you’d go to war listening to, ‘Why Would I?’ is a good example of that with a riff mid song that can knock your socks off.
I can understand why the album is named ‘The Negatives’ as the title track is really one of the hookiest songs on the album and definitely will get people singing along (I’ve found this is a habit on Hopeless, bands have to have a song which will be catchy, and none of the rest of the album sounds like it, Pigsty on Cult, Hands and Faces on Vulnerable, are just two examples I can think of right now). The album is made up of many quite short songs, some less than a minute long and many around two minutes but I suppose with the energy put into each song, it’s not surprising – especially on songs like ‘Scars For The Well Behaved’ for example and ‘Heat’, the album has velocity.
This record is really good, though I do hope it flows better on record than it does here – it’s angry, it’s raw and there’s certainly some amazing guitars on this record which really come to the forefront on every song on this record, ‘Cheap Life’ is a good example of that and ‘Why Would I?’ are examples of that, definitely a great first album on Hopeless here.