Face to Face
LIVE (Vagrant/Lady Luck Records)
By: Alex Steininger
Face to Face is a punk band. Kicking it out in small clubs and gaining a grass roots fan base since 1991, they've been in the game long enough to deserve a live album. And that's exactly what guitarist/vocalist Trevor's new record label, Lady Luck Records, is bringing to the world of punk...a Face to Face live album! Recorded in September of 1997 in Los Angeles, this album includes 18 pure punk rock songs!
The CD starts out with "Walk the Walk." Kicking it off with a ferocious bass line, underlined by the powerful kick of the drums, the guitar screeches in with some soft melody while the vocals set up the entire pace for the song. Then the guitar rips into some powerful punk rips, as the drums beat endlessly in the background. The song is fast and powerful, but it still keeps a slight pop edge filled with hooks to keep you interested, as well as to drag you deeper and deeper with every note they play. The backing vocals add nice harmony to the music, while the main vocals have a slight punk snarl to them, but for the most part, they have a very upbeat, hopeful tone to them. "Blind" starts out very soft and melodic, as the vocalist recalls a part of his life that he doesn't know if he should walk out on or stay and try to make it work, all over a soft guitar. Then as the hope for the chance to make the situation work sets in, they burst into some fierce punk rock which erases all doubt with the band and with the doubt with the listener as well. Very melodic and hook ridden, no matter what the topic they always draw the listener in and make them believe their side of the story. "I Won't Lie Down" is one of the best tracks on this CD. It starts out with heavy guitars from the beginning, before busting into a heavy chorus that draws the listener in. The vocals add to the melody in the chorus, with their slightly whiny, mostly harmonious style vocals. The drums are the fierce driving force for this song, jumping from pounding beats on the snare to heavy cymbal action during the chorus. "I'm Trying" starts out very slow, as if it might be a slow number filled with anger, sadness, and tears about lost love. But then the guitars turns it up a few notches, and you soon find out this isn't a soft song full of tears. It's an assault of great drum work, hard hitting bass, and the work of two screeching guitarists. "A.O.K.," which the lead singer announces as one of his favorite songs, is another blast of pop-punk mayhem. Fast guitars, melodic vocals, hooks, hard working drums, and a throbbing bass make this a great song to just blast while you jump around your house, or play air guitar with. "Pastel" keeps the energy roaring, even near the end of the CD. And "You've Done Nothing" shows these guys can just get harder and faster, more energetic, as well as more enthusiastic as you get deeper and deeper into their set.
This CD proves these guys are pure, non-stop action live. As the CD goes, you get deeper and deeper into the energetic, frustrated, hard-hitting world of Face to Face. Fast guitars that also provide tremendous hooks, a powerhouse on bass, and smashing drums make this band (as well as this CD) something you'll want to check out. I'll give this CD an A.
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