Hot Water Music : A Fight And A Crash

Epic stuff, indeed.

More US punk, anyone?

No-one’s heard of Gainesville, Florida neo-punks Hot Water Music. Or so you’d think. But right now there’s an underground fellowship of epic, Fugazi-ite proportions swelling around the band. And it’s not hard to see why.

‘A Flight And A Crash’ is a scorching hot, life-affirming prerequisite as far as quality emo bands go. And, sure, Chris Wollard and Chuck Ragan’s twin vocal spillage indicates a steady diet of rusty nails but, as with all acquired tastes, it just wouldn’t be the same, or anywhere near as intense, without them.

Mind you, there’s a markedly progressive leap here. One that allows for delicate, layered melodies to beam through lush emo structures. ‘In The Gray’ manages to pin down beguiling vocal harmonies, while the sturm und drang of daily grime finds a voice in the more familiar, wretched setting of ‘Choked And Separated’. Fucking amazing, whatever your bent.

Like At The Drive-In before them, Hot Water Music need to be heard by all those dumb kids and irony-punk Channel 4 presenters if only for a lesson in integrity and lateral thinking. ‘A Flight And A Crash’ is this year?s acme of post-hardcore. Epic stuff, indeed.

Darren Johns