To The Lions
Baptism of Fire

With former members of Confine, Grade, and SeventyEightDays, you’d expect Ontario’s To The Lions to be a well oiled, conviction fueled hardcore machine, and you’d be right.

Mostly mid tempo, chunky, fluff free, passionate urgent hardcore rooted on the early 90’s scene (i.e. Integrity, Earth Crisis, Ringworm, Bloodlet, Turmoil) is the forte of To The Lions and they do it well, but with little or no originality or defining character. The 10 no-nonsense tracks rumble and churn with aplomb and intensity (“Nightmare Begins”, “Armor of God”) but nothing that really sets it apart from the heap of other hardcore I have in my review stack (Barcode, The Fire The Flood, Protestant, Seventh Star, Daymares, The Dead See, A Perfect Murder, Achilles, The Destro, etc).

The production is expectedly stout, and you get a genuine sense of love for the genre as opposed to money grubbing or trend hopping and seems far more honest and less commercially aware, self promoting and fashionable than the likes of Hatebreed, Terror, Bury Your Dead or Throwdown. The ‘breakdowns’ aren’t telegraphed and synchronized but a more organic and almost improvised injections to the already stern songs. Heck there’s even a solo/melody here and there (“Ten/Fifteen”, “The Forsaken”) to throw in a little surprise to the mix.

Still, this is a solid hardcore record from what seems like a pretty dedicated and passionate band that is more concerned with their music than their myspace page.

[Visit the band's website]
Written by E. Thomas
July 6th, 2007

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