Release DetailsLABEL Facedown Records
RELEASED ON 11/8/2005
No Innocent Victim
To Burn Again
posted on 1/2006 By:
No Innocent Victim, before their split in 2002, had a fairly respectable following and discography within the annals of hardcore including some time with Victory Records when they were actually a hardcore label. So forward to 2004, a surprise Cornerstone festival appearance and subsequent reunion, a reunion fueled by apparent ‘Disappointment with the lack of integrity in today's hardcore’.
So it’s a shame that To Burn Again is such a predictable and by the numbers album, if energetic and honest in its metallic hardcore fits. Lyrically and basically comparable to some of Facedown’s former and current hardcore roster (Bloody Sunday, xLooking Forwardx, xDISCIPLEx AD), No Innocent Victim are a metal-laced hardcore act that delivers power chord fueled hardcore/punk mixed with biting metal edge that also brings to mind the likes of All Out War and Embrace Today. The thing is, No Innocent Victim doesn’t separate themselves from any of the aforementioned bands. Of course that may be due to hardcore underlying themes and scene contrivances, but still, Id expect a little more of a ‘special’ return to the fray - like Turmoil for example.
So anyway, despite its lack of individual character, To Burn Again has some nifty little moments of beefy metallic hardcore rage such as “Set Apart”, “Your Freedom”, “Where’s Your Heart?” “Stand”, “Not Guilty” and the rather hefty "To the Death”. All mingled with the expected classic Agnostic Front/Sick of it All/Madball styled power chord sneer and unity based, politically, and socially threatening mood (“Cut it Off” , “Bring Them Back”, “Ready to Fight”, “Paid in Full”). The meaner, slower, more metal tracks are definitely more impressive and have more staying power, especially considering the vast hardcore review backlog I’m caving under (Blacklisted, No Turning Back, Shattered Realm, Ringworm, Waterdown, xBishopx). That being said, compared to those releases, with the exception of xBishopX, No Innocent Victim did warrant a few replays after review purposes were served, but mainly the slower chuggy tracks.
Die hard fans from their early days and just die hard hardcore fans will hate me for not praising this band's return, but I call it like I see it kids. Though solid and certainly full of typical hardcore conviction, No Innocent Victim don’t really deliver anything worth a 2 year layoff, but then again this is hardcore and should be taken with a drop of sweat and enjoyed for what it is.
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