Rise Records has always managed to keep a roster of blistering hardcore through its time as a heavy hitter in the fast and aggressive music scene, and this latest release from Albany-grown outfit Downswing is yet another notch in the belt for the label. The five-song EP is a veritable chuggernaut, hellbent on obliteration and melting faces, keen with intent on making enemies out of friends in the pit.
With just enough snot on its sleeve to remind the listener of its punk ancestry, Dark Side of the Mind starts things off right with “Hell”, a pretty apt title that wastes no time in serving up the heat to the eardrums. What follows is a trustworthy formula, tried and tested by years of the youth crew hardcore that sets its eyes squarely on delivering the goods on the strength of its breakdowns. As long as it can stop everything so that it can kill everything, this is the ultimate aim of the hardcore band. If it can show off technical skill, vocal chops, and have fun or melt faces while it does it, all the better. Downswing manage to achieve all of the above.
Of course, with every formula comes the caveat: it is formulaic. This is not a problem for those who love it. For those who have either never listened to it or maybe partaken too much over the years, this will be repellant, but for anyone else this is heavy shit to throw down to. If you prefer your hardcore lean, mean, young and angry, look no further and scoop this little grenade of an album.
Dark Side of the Mind Track Listing:
Run Time: 13:32
Release Date: November 10, 2017
Listen to the band’s single “Enough” right here.