Bane
Give Blood


5.0
classic

Review

by ConsiderPhlebas USER (34 Reviews)
October 17th, 2010 | 72 replies


Release Date: 2001 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Give more. Give everything. Give blood.

It All Comes Down to This was a strange beast. Bane were still recognisable from their earlier days, particularly in Aaron Bedard’s meaty yelps, but the record lacked the immediacy and punch people were used to. It was a difficult record, one obviously marked with the producer’s (Steve Austin) signature bleakness. There was greatness in there for those willing to spend a little time, and there were even a few bangers nestled amongst the more diffuse parts, but overall it failed to capitalise on what Bane were best at: fist punching hardcore for the thinking man. They’d sacrificed too much of the fist for the mind; where they would go from then on was anybody’s guess. Luckily for everyone, the band took the best possible route. With the intelligence and depth of It All Comes Down to This still in evidence, Bane nutted back up and came out fighting. Maybe there are some people who don’t crack a huge smile when they first hear the record’s opening line, but I seriously doubt it.

Fuck yeah, I am still holding on…

Give Blood is as focused as a needle of sunlight blazing from a magnifying glass, and for a hardcore record that totally avoids silly machismo in favour of genuinely engaging ideas, that’s saying something. You want songs about hardcore and the scene" Step right up. You come from a place where there is no scene and want something that you can identify with" Come on in. You want something poetic but are afraid your mates will think you’ve got a vagina" Well, I’ve run out of metaphors for getting the record, but you get my point. Lyrically, Bane get stuck into the grit of their own lives: begging their van to start (Snakes Among Us), smashing the windshields in an Audi dealership (Sunflowers and Sunsets) and a bunch of other things you’ll be better off hearing yourself. Seamlessly mixed in amongst this are recurring bursts of deceptively simple, obviously heartfelt philosophy, which temper things like acts of apparently-childish vandalism with ideas you’d be hard pressed to find anywhere else in this, or indeed any genre. No fanciness, no pretension, just hardcore punk that makes you think.

And it’s all delivered against a backdrop of pacey, dynamic music which never goes near the borders of needless complexity, sounding at times almost like a bruisier Refused. If there is a chink in Bane's armour, it's probably that their desire to never sound stale can lead to the odd stunted riff here and there. Even in the more brooding parts, though, like the intro to ‘The Big Gun Down’, there is energy coiled beneath the surface, ready to bloom and break free. Brian McTernan’s delightful nuts-and-bolts production lets the record breathe when it needs to and roar when it wants to. Gone are the meandering passages that muddied It All Comes Down to This, here replaced with vividly direct, every-second-counts songs that get in and out, all ten of ‘em, in less than twenty-six minutes. Embodying all that is admirable in hardcore, Give Blood is the sound of a great band at the top of their game. Here’s hoping they reach the same heights again.



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user ratings (265)
Chart.
4
excellent
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Comments:Add a Comment 
ConsiderPhlebas
October 16th 2010


6157 Comments


5'd it. Bam!

bailar14
October 16th 2010


1603 Comments


its beautiful senor phelbas

ConsiderPhlebas
October 16th 2010


6157 Comments


cheers Enrique!

bailar14
October 16th 2010


1603 Comments


gonna have to check this out. excellent review, as always. hope to see more soon.

ConsiderPhlebas
October 16th 2010


6157 Comments


Yeah, the album rules, man. Gonna pop a couple of reviews out this week.

Transient
October 17th 2010


1461 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

AND THE CLOCK KEEPS TICKING AND THE MINUTES KEEP COMING AND ALL I CAN DO IS RISE TO SLAUGHTER THE HOURS

ConsiderPhlebas
October 17th 2010


6157 Comments


And I have spent so much time folding bad cards, and eating my words -I've said some awful things to some real good people

xfearbefore
October 17th 2010


1722 Comments


Sweet, succinct little review, pos'd. Band kicks all kinds of ass.


Digging: MC Breed - The New Breed

Foxhound
October 17th 2010


4571 Comments


Pos'd Melvin. I'll send cookies in the near future.

Xplisit
October 18th 2010


1646 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

this album is fucking awesome

rasputin
October 18th 2010


14968 Comments


i really like this album but i wouldn't give it a 5

good review though

Athom
Emeritus
October 18th 2010


17240 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

its your call... its all on you

ConsiderPhlebas
October 18th 2010


6157 Comments


I think about art, and I think about madness, and are they truly joined at the hip?



Cheers fellas.

Apollo
October 18th 2010


10677 Comments


great review Phleb

BigHands
October 18th 2010


338 Comments


Glad to see you writing again.

NYdubber
October 18th 2010


96 Comments


fuckin' classic - last time I saw them was Hellfest 2000 or 2001.


"Can we...start again!?!? Go back to what it meant back then!?!?!"

ConsiderPhlebas
October 18th 2010


6157 Comments


Cheers boys. Yeah, NY, I used to look at the lineup of Hellfest and cry - never really had the equivalent over here. Amazing live act, though.

Inveigh
October 18th 2010


26489 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

awesome review Phleb, always love reading your stuff. I prefer Holding This Moment to this one, but I really should dust off this record soon. Been too long since I've listened to it

ConsiderPhlebas
October 18th 2010


6157 Comments


Thanks, man. Holding this Moment actually has my favourite Bane songs, it's just a little uneven for me.

Inveigh
October 18th 2010


26489 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

yeah, this one is a little bit more consistent



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