rating icon 7.5 / 10

Track listing:

01. You're One Of Us Now
02. Killing Time
03. Lead Pipe
04. Heaven Sent
05. Tightrope
06. I Hope Your Choke!
07. Fail You
08. A.M.P.
09. Dance With Death
10. Coeur D'Alene

California post-hardcore band MOVEMENTS broke out in 2020 with their album, "No Good Left to Give", which debuted at No. 3 on the alternative chart. But, just because that album debuted on the alternative chart doesn't mean they're going to be pigeonholed into that genre. On Movements' latest album, "RUCKUS!", the band plays with their style showing that they're still in the early stages of finding out what MOVEMENTS should sound like. With producer Will Yip in the fold, MOVEMENTS have crafted a collection of music that brings together hardcore, metal, punk and even pop, and it all goes together surprisingly well.

"You're One of Us" kicks the set off, starting with loud crowd noises and launching into a classic guitar riff and groovy hard rock anthem. Musically, the song has a deep groove about it; vocally, the song is very hardcore, showcasing Patrick Miranda's bright tenor and nu-metal rhymes. The song could fit alongside classic post-hardcore bands like THE USED and STORY OF THE YEAR. "Killing Time" follows, this time bringing a funky bass line, perhaps resembling Flea of the RED HOT CHILI PEPPERS, and a catchy, bouncing vibe with makes this one of the catchiest songs on the set.

One highlight is "Lead Pipe", which is one of the heavier songs and offers blaring guitar riffs, distorted bass and a huge, captivating chorus. Another bright spot is "Tightrope", a surprisingly pop-leaning song that sounds like another band could have recorded it. Miranda has said that this song was influenced by acts such as SNOW PATROL and AUGUSTANA, and that certainly comes through in its melodic nature and pop sensibility.

Those looking for a straight-ahead post-hardcore sound will find it in "Fail You", another strong track which offers fast-paced guitars and rhythms alongside Miranda's powerful mix of singing and chanting vocals. "Dance with Death" is another obvious post-hardcore anthem, with feral aggression and Miranda's high-itched, yearning vocals. The album wraps up with "Coeur D'Alene", a soft ballad about love and life that adds a nice dimension to an otherwise furious-sounding album.

"RUCKUS!" shows that MOVEMENTS are a serious band looking to claim their place in the post-hardcore landscape. They're also taking cues from groups such as BAD OMENS and SLEEP TOKEN and switching up their sound. "RUCKUS!" brims with variety, and while that may be a bit jarring to the fans of pure post-hardcore, many listeners will appreciate the diversity. More than anything, "RUCKUS!" has passion, and that makes it a welcomed addition to MOVEMENTS' growing discography.

Author: Anne Erickson
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