Trash Talk
Eyes & Nines


3.5
great

Review

by Ali CONTRIBUTOR (131 Reviews)
June 2nd, 2010 | 19 replies


Release Date: 2010 | Tracklist

Review Summary: A frustrating but ultimately enjoyable "full length."

Every genre of music has it’s stereotypes, but for some these are truer than for others. Hardcore, for instance is often cited as valuing speed before strategy, brutality before beauty and volume before vigilance, rulings which at first glance portray a style lacking in intelligence and direction. But while there are some notable exceptions, many hardcore bands certainly fit this stereotype, and on first glance, Californian outfit Trash Talk would appear to be one of them.

Since their formation in 2005, this quartet have blurted out material with almost alarming regularity. Up until now, they have released four EP’s, two compilations and a live album, and on top of all that, Eyes & Nines is their third full length outing, all of this in a mere five years. Producing output at such a prolific rate does, of course, raise various questions and doubts, with whether the band has any sense of quality control immediately springing to mind. On this point, this third record gives off mixed signals.

The first thing that should be noted here is that the label “full-length” is rather misleading. The band’s 2006 debut, Walking Disease had a rather paltry running time, and this record itself only goes on for seventeen minutes. In truth, this has more characteristics of an EP than an album, and indeed there are many EP’s with far longer running times than your average Trash Talk album. It would certainly be reasonable to assume that this shows the band are more concerned with releasing material regularly than producing something of any real definitive quality.

But what of the music on offer? Unfortunately, this also seems at first to lack the ambition needed to make the band anything to write home about. There is very little – if anything – in the way of originality or new ideas that can push the genre forward from its current state of saturation – something that is true for all too many hardcore bands. The running times for some of the songs also give off negative signals, as many are simply too short to get any kind of momentum going before they reach their conclusion. I Do, for instance, clocks in at a feeble thirty-nine seconds, and would probably be classed as an interlude if the material around it suffered from the same problems.

However, these initial impressions don’t give the full picture, as there are some aspects of Eyes & Nines that suggest the band aren’t just content with throwing out anything - no matter how messy. While individual tracks, as mentioned, often lack momentum because of their length, collectively they tend to be far more effective. The first three tracks, for instance, prove a relentless opening, while the final six race through with ferocious efficiency, being totally devoid of excess.

The one track not covered by this spectrum is Hash Wednesday, which remarkably clocks in at four and a half minutes(!). This song is notable not just for it’s uncharacteristic extended length, but for the far slower and more considered approach it takes, musically. This doom influenced number may not be the best on the record, but it does, at least, show that they are striding for a little variety in their music, something that many similar bands don’t even attempt. On a longer record, numbers like this can be vital to an accomplished, well rounded set, but because of this records brevity, its effectiveness is lost somewhat.

Observing the record as one big (or not so big) slab of noise is, however, overlooking the fact that there are some very good individual tracks on offer. Chief among these is Explode, a furious blast of hardcore energy which unlike other tracks stays long enough to leave an impression but not so long that it outstays its welcome. Similar traits are possessed by On A Fix and the closing title track, and while not quite as good it’s moments like these that lift the record well clear of mediocrity and maintain the bands fearsome live reputation.

Ultimately, Eyes & Nines is a frustrating record to listen to and reflect upon. It’s definitely a violent and engaging listen that packs a punch, but the short running time means that little long term damage is caused. Sure, the final six tracks hit you with their anger and relentlessness, but the fact that they only last a combined total of seven minutes cushions the impact somewhat. As such, this record is better viewed as an EP rather than an album. Although the material on offer is of a good standard, this is unfortunate as it limits what can be achieved. There is nothing here that suggests the band aren’t capable of stepping out of their comfort zone and making an excellent hardcore album in the future – but it’s up to them to decide whether to take that step. It’s evident though that with a little more ambition and a little more time in its construction, Trash Talk are capable of making records far superior to this one.

Recommended Tracks
Explode
Eyes & Nines



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user ratings (191)
Chart.
3.5
great

Comments:Add a Comment 
AliW1993
Contributing Reviewer
June 2nd 2010


7404 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Album was released digitally on May 18th

ConsiderPhlebas
June 2nd 2010


6157 Comments


This album got 10 out of 10 in Rock Sound magazine. Not seeing it myself.

Athom
Staff Reviewer
June 2nd 2010


17225 Comments


I've been trying to form an opinion about this for almost a month and every time i listen to it I just think it's ok and nothing to write home about.

Roach
June 2nd 2010


2148 Comments


17 minutes is still full length this is hardcore remember

AliW1993
Contributing Reviewer
June 2nd 2010


7404 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

I've been trying to form an opinion about this for almost a month and every time i listen to it I just think it's ok and nothing to write home about.

Yeah I know what you mean. This is high 3/low 3.5 for me. I gave it the benefit of the doubt because of how much I liked Explode and the title track.

DaveyBoy
Staff Reviewer
June 2nd 2010


20857 Comments


Solid review Ali. I always know what I'm getting after I read your reviews.

This probably reads more like a 3 to be honest.

accompliceofmydeath
June 2nd 2010


4297 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

These guys killed it live. I'll have to pick up this new one since they didn't have it at their show. Who doesn't bring copies of their
new album to a show?

Digging: Weekend Nachos - Unforgivable

FunkyGoose
July 26th 2010


1 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

I would give this record a 2.5 for the songs that come before Hash Wednesday, and a 4.0 for all the songs that come after Hash Wednesday. Really great 2nd half of the album, first half just totally blows.

cagovnold
September 1st 2010


23 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Expected this album to be received better...

Uranium
July 3rd 2011


7258 Comments


title track is amazing

Pyosisified
July 3rd 2011


2450 Comments


p good album

sixthgoldenticket
September 13th 2011


1176 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0

it's okay but it feels so basic compared to their other releases

Adabelle
September 13th 2011


4258 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

Compared to Walking Disease, this is nothing, but pumped for EP anyway!

Adabelle
October 11th 2011


4258 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

JESUS IS IN ME.

Skoj
March 4th 2012


1247 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

Reads like a 2.5 to me. I've run hot and cold with it as well, still can't afford it anything higher than a 3 on a good day.

Digging: Deathspell Omega - Paracletus

fish.
Contributing Reviewer
April 11th 2012


22034 Comments


Vultures rules

Digging: Azealia Banks - Broke With Expensive Taste

Aids
Contributing Reviewer
July 11th 2012


23976 Comments


excellent review

if this band's live show is anything to go by, I need to hear their albums immediately.

Digging: Marketa Irglova - Muna

Adabelle
July 11th 2012


4258 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

Woah i gave this a 2.5, brb gonna go listen again

jmh886
October 16th 2013


869 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Guitar tone stinks. Too much bass.



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