Album Review
Pseudo Heroes
Label: Go-Kart Records
  • 3/5
Reviewed by Janelle
On "Prison Of Small Perception," the Pseudo Heroes' second LP, the trio gets rather eclectic on us, and brings in a whole slew of guest to help them out.

This band that features Down By Law guitarist Sam Williams taking on vocal/guitar duties, Pink Lincoln's bassist Kevin Coss, and drummer Carlos Velez-Collins, present us with an album that oscillates between faster, more aggressive, hardcore punk songs and emotional, more sedate fare in the vein of "Ignorance Is Bliss"-era Face To Face, as on "Hereditary Fault," "Burnin' for You," "Under the Sun," "Ordinarily Odd," and "I Know What You Need." A great example of the disparity in styles comes at the end of the record, with the hellish fury and B-movie imagery of "Dead Alive" that is highlighted by the barking vocals supplied by Massacre's Kam Lee, which is followed by the light and airy acoustic finale, "A Million Miles of Missteps."

Front man Sam Williams states his reasons for such a self-proclaimed "schizophrenic release," by insisting that music today ヨ or rather bands, tend to stick to one style, one sound. The Pseudo Heroes' goal on this record is to offer up different elements and "stir up creativity in the music scene," as explained in the liner notes.

Nonetheless, where this album really gets exciting is on the harder songs, from the paranoid one-minute opener "Conspiracy," to "Get Out of My Life" (no, not the D.O.A. classic of the same name) featuring the one and only Dave Smalley of Down By Law, All, Dag Nasty fame on vocals, through to the hyper "Live Fast Die Slow," which features the great Poison Idea's Jerry A., which is then followed by another tough rocker, the quicker than lightening "I Must Confess (More or Less)." Other standouts are "You're So Pathetic," an epic-like forty-second offering - no, but all kidding aside, a great quick, hardcore punk tune ヨ and the slower, somewhat dark "I Don't Care," a kind of unrequited love song with lines like "Kick my face as I kiss your feet/I don't care if you don't like me," with Chris Barrows of the Pink Lincolns contributing his distinctively snotty vocals. The aforementioned "Dead Alive" is a keeper as is the frantic, hardcore mayhem of "Human Time Bomb," which is sung by Lee Dorrian of grindcore originators Napalm Death.

Other guests include Government Issue's John Stabb lending his vocal prowess to the mocking "Bad Show" and Blaine Cook (The Accused, The Fartz), singing insanely on "Too Scared to Care." And interestingly, more often than not, most of the guest vocalists pen their own lyrics.

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