The Clam!!!!

Hostage Calm – Lens

The calming acoustic first track is your only chance to relax on this half hour of Connecticut- based melodic hardcore. The whole record has a fast, punky edge to it, but there are plenty of gang vocals and breakdowns to keep the ‘core edge apparent throughout. A lot of the melody in this album comes from vocalist Chris Martin’s actual singing ability, which might turn a lot of windbreaker and baseball hat-wearing meatheads off. But those of us who can tolerate a nice voice will love this style of hardcore.

Important and intelligent messages -involving much social and political commentary- are left for you to decipher in these intimidating, poetic lyrics. For example, “Gaslighting” is obviously a commentary on the Iraq War (You can rebuild Baghdad/ And make her our clone/ And let their children think they’re free/ Just like we tell our own) – that’s an “oof”. Of course you’d have to pull out the liner notes for the majority of these somewhat inaudible lyrics, sometimes hidden by drums and quick guitars.

This album is reminiscent of earlier Crime in Stereo and Ambitions – taking familiar sounds to create something all its own. Keep in mind it is very catchy and a smooth listen, making for possible TRL material in the future – so don’t be surprised when teeny boppers smothered in eyeliner are raving about Hostage Calm someday.

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