Plow United - Marching Band (Cover Artwork)

Plow United

Plow United: Marching BandMarching Band (2013)
Jump Start Records

Reviewer Rating: 4
User Rating:

Contributed by: JeloneJelone
(others by this writer | submit your own)

While a lot of '90s punk and hardcore bands have reunited over the last couple of years, few have produced new material. Not so with Plow United. Reunited since 2011's Riot Fest East, the Pennsylvania punk performers have produced a belated follow-up to 1998's Narcolepsy. Jump Start Records could no.
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While a lot of '90s punk and hardcore bands have reunited over the last couple of years, few have produced new material. Not so with Plow United. Reunited since 2011's Riot Fest East, the Pennsylvania punk performers have produced a belated follow-up to 1998's Narcolepsy. Jump Start Records could not have a more prescient label name, as Marching Band finds Plow United building on the classic, frantic sound they pioneered.

As if the Sleepwalk collection didn't already make it clear, Plow United can seamlessly cram more ideas into a song than some bands do in an album. Opener "Human 2000" is a 78-second melodic punk in the vein of the Loved Ones and Lucero. It's flecked with piano, but the harmony is what definitely sells it. "Act Like It" flails out at a breakneck pace, but Plow United were always great at ludicrous speeds. The song plays sort of like two songs jammed together, but they're both super catchy so everybody wins.

Marching Band finds the common threads between different versions of rock: "Cui Bono?" is nearly hardcore, "The Beginning of the End of the World" is nearly classic rock, "The War is Over and Our Side Won" is definitely a joke song. If the riff works, don't fix it. Coupled with an aversion to filler, the guys keep their songs tight. Listening to Plow United makes me realize how much fat other punk bands use to pad their songs. Plow United aims for speedy delivery and big hooks.

Admittedly, the catchiest songs are packed in the front (the first four tracks are so perfect together it's almost dangerous), making the record slightly unbalanced in its third quarter or so. A few of the tracks have some awkward editing choices, such as a vocal punch in "Get Low" that sounds unnatural starting before the previous line resolves. But "Get Low" is also one of the record's highlights, so go figure. Marching Band is a real romper stomper; by the time closer "Megger" kicks in, I'm already ready to start the record again. It's easy to get cynical with reunions, but in Plow United's case, it has repeatedly yielded huge gains.


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Fine Print: The following comments are owned by whoever posted them. We are not respon sible for them in any way. Seriously.
upstart13 (April 8, 2013)

Great album. Ive spun this one so many times just like there other 2 albums. Why? Plow is great with creating variety. No songs sound the same. Every song is great. Which means it doesnt get stale and boring.

davebrave4 (April 5, 2013)

Unless those opinions are mine, in which case yes, everyone should share them.

davebrave4 (April 5, 2013)

Joel from Plow United's comment makes me think of last night's episode of The Office, with Andy Bernard trying to respond to everyone's negative comments on the internet and getting increasingly frustrated. This is the internet: you can't make everyone like you or share the same opinion, and personally I don't think you should try.

telegraphrocks (April 4, 2013)

lol at the loser "punk" in their parent's house bitching about someone standing up for their friends

trustychords69 (April 3, 2013)

lol at the old dude in a punk band bitching about peoples opinions below

MN_DrNick (April 2, 2013)

Album rules.

telegraphrocks (April 2, 2013)

I've only gotten half-way through so far, but I like what I've heard.

FRANKTHEP (April 2, 2013)

Great cd. I have had it for about two weeks and have played it about 50 times. Great songs, great lyrics. Easily at the top of my list for 2013. The release show in Philly Sunday was the best I have seen them play since they got back together-which is saying something becasue of the other two times were fantastic.

eatbicycles (April 2, 2013)


moisheoreilly (April 2, 2013)

Joel from Plow United here. Thanks for the compliments. Please don't pick on our friends. If you wanna pick on somebody, pick on us; we've certainly given you enough material to work with.

You're obviously entitled to your opinion but if you claim to be a fan of punk rock and you think those vocals are "horrendous" then I respectfully suggest you go listen to some X-ray Spex, some Wendy O Williiams, some Muffs, some Lipstick Homicide, etc. If you want all traditionally female-register vocals to sound like Adele then you are on the wrong website bro.

mclz (April 2, 2013)

The new album is great and I really love the new version of Meggers. My only problem is the chick on Get Low, her voice is fucking horrendous. Would prefer another chick with a non-annoying voice or just Brian solo.

lukabratzi (April 2, 2013)

Great album. Not sure if there's a song on this I don't love. Meggers is a fantastic closer and Cui Bono is awesome too.

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