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LITERATURE

 » Full Dark, No Stars - Stephen King's new novella questions mankind's ability to trust others.
[02.21.2011 by Bridget Doyle]

MUSIC

 » The Top 30 Albums of 2010 - Fashionably, fabulously late, our favorite music (and believe me, there was a LOT) of 2010, the year that some have called the best year for music ever. And only some of those fools work here. Plenty of usual suspects, lots of ties and a few surprises that I won't spoil, including our unexpected #1.
[12.24.2010 by The LAS Staff]

MUSIC

 » Live: Surfer Blood/The Drums at Lincoln Hall, Chicago, IL - Remember when Weezer used to put together records that you could sing along to and rock out to? That's what Surfer Blood's show was like!
[11.04.2010 by Cory Tendering]

Music Reviews

Screaming Females - Castle Talk
»Screaming Females
Castle Talk
Don Giovanni
Trent Reznor & Atticus Ross - The Social Network [Original Soundtrack]
»Trent Reznor & Atticus Ross
The Social Network [Original Soundtrack]
The Null Corporation
Deerhunter - Halcyon Digest
»Deerhunter
Halcyon Digest
4AD
No Age - Everything in Between
»No Age
Everything in Between
Sub Pop
Robyn - Body Talk Pt. 1/ Body Talk Pt. 2
»Robyn
Body Talk Pt. 1/ Body Talk Pt. 2
Konichiwa
The Walkmen - Lisbon
»The Walkmen
Lisbon
Fat Possum
Coalesce
Give Them Rope She Said v2.0
Edison Recordings

Rating: 7.5/10 ?


October 1, 2004
As with practically every permutation of punk rock, hardcore became irrelevant as soon as everyone found out about it. Aside from its seminal early recordings, the subgenre lost steam rather quickly - after all, its musical tenets only left so much room for stretching and exploring before it was altogether transcended, and the music became something other than hardcore. Even when a decent throwback act like Terror surfaces, hardcore fans are ultimately always left pining for the good ol' days, which are, almost invariably, a three-year window of time during a hardcore fan's teenhood that may or may not have actually yielded a string of enduring albums.

If you were just discovering hardcore during Coalesce's brief existence, then congratulations: you actually can claim that you came of punk rock age during a relatively vital period. After a decade of stale old-school hangers-on and jockish mosh-core (see: Victory Records, pre-Thursday), bands like Converge, Deadguy, Today Is the Day, and these guys started toying around with death metal breakdowns and algebra I time signatures (as opposed to the pre-algebra piddlings of their peers), and for a brief moment, it looked like hardcore was finally going to matter again. Seven years or so later, we can see that metalcore has produced relatively few worthwhile albums, but when Give Them Rope She Said was first released, the future looked a hell of a lot brighter than it does from the bottom of the Ozzfest-endorsed shithole that the hardcore community's stuck in right now.

Repackaged and remastered, this album sounds just as fresh today as it did the first time it bitch-slapped all of us with its blunt truths and deadly rhythms. As thick and impenetrable as Coalesce's music can be, it's refreshingly direct and sensible when compared to many current hardcore bands' "more parts = better songs" mindset, and at the record's end, you're left beaten and bloodied, but never over-taxed and over-loaded. Though it never quite transcends its own genre, Give Them Enough Rope is about as close as hardcore has come in the last decade to exploring the broader rock aesthetic without sacrificing any of its fundamentals. To the disenchanted and the unbelievers, take note - Coalesce always offered something more than loosely organized temper tantrums, and this reissue serves as a punishing reminder.

Reviewed by Phillip Buchan
A one-time music director at WUOG in Athens, Phillip is into college radio, literature, writing, buying records, going to shows, talking to friends, learning -- pretty much the same stuff that all of us priveledged, (pseudo?)intellectual Americans are into.

See other reviews by Phillip Buchan

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