Album Reviews: Backtrack ‘Bad To My World’

November 15, 2017

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Genre: Hardcore
Release Date: 11/17/2017
Label: Bridge 9
Purchase: MP3 / CD / Vinyl

The late 80s was the last frontier of New York's golden age of hardcore. Band's like Sick of It All, Killing Time and Breakdown kicked the scene further into high gear- with monstrous breakdowns and anthemic shout-alongs. Fast forward to modern times- New York's Backtrack carry the flame. Following 2014's Lost In Life, their third full-length album, Bad To My World hits like a ton of bricks.

Bad To My World kicks off with the explosive and brooding Cro-Mags-esq riffage on "War." Vocalist, James Vitalo, unleashes a fury of blood curdling vocals- the vehicle for intense emotion and angst fueled by the outside world. A slugger of an intro brings us into the album's most anthemic track, "One With You." Following the song's pit-taunting breakdown, Backtrack drive in the old-school feel- with more upbeat adrenaline than anticipated.

Backtrack often swift from crunchy breakdowns to barreling crossover- as heard on "Bad To My World," "Crooks Die Slow" and "Never Ending Web." Additionally, "Cold-Blooded" embodies the classic New York hardcore template of menacing guitar chords propelled by brutality. Bad To My World is some of Backtrack's best material yet. While they may not have been active over the past three years, it seems like they took that time to recharge and bounce back with more anthemic potency and spirit than ever.

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