Introspect - S/T 2x 7" (Classic Review of the Week)

Introspect were a great hardcore band from the mid 90s that featured some ex-members of Elements of Need. They had a great way of blending some heavier hardcore sounds with a raw, melodic sensibility. The musicianship on this record is pretty top notch, creating some interesting patterns and holding the interest of the listener well.

What drew me to this record at the young age of 17 was the band's ability to make the verse/chorus formula seem much less predictable than usual. Songs like "Muddy Water" and "Forced Reaction" are simply done in a verse/chorus format, but really deliver some beautiful urgency. This is a theme through the record and, for some reason, never gets old here.

Vocally Introspect take some chances and I believe they succeed in ways that other may falter. There's a great mid-strength scream that takes up most of the airtime. However, the appearance of some melodic vocals make for an interesting contrast. Songs like "Blue" and "Birth Right" use this melodic vocal for their choruses to provide some nice emphasis to the screaming choruses. It's an age old formula but you have to see how this band employs it.

Songs like "Blue" and "Always" show off the heavier aspects this band has to offer. The drum work on "Always" is extremely impressive and the pauses are perfectly placed with their vocal cues. The guitar tone on this record is huge and I think that this, along with the hard hitting drums, really makes this record hold up over the past 16 years.

Download it here.