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Manipulate: Becoming Madness EP

The title of this EP speaks directly to its larger theme of human behavior. Put another way, at what point do human choices transform into behavior that can only be described in terms of madness? As audio sample on the opening track states, "And I do not hope for a better world for anyone; in fact, I want my pain to be inflicted on others." Those sentiments point to the band's overall purpose. But those words must not be taken at face value. The music here isn't celebrating the desire to transform personal pain into social tragedy. Instead, the lyrics and the music investigate the need for human beings to turn away from destructive narratives about themselves and others and to find, instead, better ways of expressing themselves, of behaving, and of treating others. Hatred, drugs, racism—all these themes show up here (and are depicted in one way or another on the cover art). This is punk rock with a conscience, but it's not a whiny conscience. No, this is the righteous indignation of punk rock, the mood that drives bands to point to human madness and to yell "stop it!" Some readers may think that expressing such feelings about the way people should behave is hardly the stuff of extreme music, especially punk rock. But that's a mistake. Much of the great punk of the 1980s explored the wasteland of drug and alcohol abuse in order to think about what humans can do when striving toward something better. Better still, the music on this release doesn't come across as preachy or annoying. Instead, it explores its ideas within the context of fast and aggressive punk metal, one of the best styles for working out aggressive feelings toward human madness. This is a solid new release from a band that carries the torch of such luminaries as D. R. I. and others. Check out the first couple of tracks. If you like them, you'll like the whole thing.

Track Listing:
1. Becoming Madness
2. Beaten Path
3. Sin Upon Sin
4. Slip Away
5. Time Marches On
6. Manipulate

Added: January 22nd 2016
Reviewer: Carl Sederholm
Related Link: Band Website
Hits: 1423
Language: english

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