Seeing the multitude of ‘sell outs!” and “not as good as their first record” comments, that have plagued the comments sections of preview tracks released from this album, forces you to wonder whether this is actually the case, or just connoisseurs of sour grapes thumbing their nose at an underground band actually getting the exposure they deserve. Upon hearing this monster in full it’s indisputably apparent that it’s the latter, as the Californian trio have never sounded better. Nails have managed to do what the likes of Weekend Nachos and Trap Them never could, and that’s launch hardcore into the mainstream.
The title track opens proceedings with a ferocity that also shows a development in the band’s song writing capabilities. The lyrics are barked with such conviction that’s impossible not to be drawn in by them. As well as sounding gnarly as all hell, the guitars manage to pack in hooks which make the songs that comprise this release almost catchy in places. The thunderous drumming on songs such as ‘Life is a Death Sentence’ gives the distinct impression that John Gianelli’s fingers would have been bloodied from furiously plucking his bass strings to keep up.
Savage roars of guitar pump every song full of raw expressions of anger. However, this album goes above and beyond a Neanderthal expression of anger, into something that is intelligent and well structured. Indulging in typical hardcore punk sensibilities alongside a mixture of pick slide frenzied grind and death metal groove, ‘You Will Never Be One of Us’ is a hefty treat for the ears that will satisfy the palate of any metal fan, no matter their preferences.
(9/10 Angela Davey)