After fourteen whole years with no new Hot Snakes recordings, the drought is finally over! Hot Snakes got back in the studio to blast out some more of their righteous post-hardcore, with a line-up that now includes both of their notable past drummers. Jericho Sirens sounds precisely as rad as the cover image would suggest. Out on Sub Pop.
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They’re back! Hot Snakes are back! Have they been surfing for fourteen straight years of hiatus? To be confirmed. Are they scheming with Downtown Boys to turn Sub Pop into a full-blown punk label? To be confirmed. Are the snakes still hot? To. Be. Confirmed. All I can really confirm, in reality, is that this is an wildly fun record from a band who knew how to build a record out of hooks and add the noisy dejection later -- “I Need a Doctor” is the catchiest punk thing I’ve heard since Against Me!’s ‘No Wave’ and that’s saying a lot.
Phew. Storms in, this one, and from there the angular and discordant ‘tude gets going. “Candid Cameras” and its jittering rhythm leaves the ear with loose ends to latch on to, offering an abrasive and full-blown sound that ultimately gets washed away with those fleeting choruses that offer what sounds like a scuzzed-up key change. Built from a second of sparsity into a lively, busy pop-punk song, “Six Wave Hold Down” shows them making those lovely, homely chord progressions for you to get all bittersweet in. The hits keep coming.
If the chords are good… maybe the band is? That can’t be right but I pretty much coast along to all of these songs, like whatever dude is catching the wave just right on the front cover -- the energy is boundless and the way it’s channelled is blissful. They never went away, did they? It was 2006, and then it was 2018.
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- Jericho Sirens by Hot Snakes
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