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American Steel - Destroy Their Future (Cover Artwork)

American Steel

American Steel: Destroy Their FutureDestroy Their Future (2007)
Fat Wreck Chords

Reviewer Rating: 4.5
User Rating:


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

In the "here today, gone tomorrow" age of music, timing is often everything. For American Steel, truer words may have never been spoken. Formed in 1995 in the famous San Fran Bay Area scene, American Steel quickly carved a name for themselves with their melodically urgent style of intricate anthems .
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In the "here today, gone tomorrow" age of music, timing is often everything. For American Steel, truer words may have never been spoken. Formed in 1995 in the famous San Fran Bay Area scene, American Steel quickly carved a name for themselves with their melodically urgent style of intricate anthems and legendary live shows. Between 1998 and 2001 the band managed to release three stellar full-length albums, with the last two, Rouge's March and Jagged Thoughts, heralded by many as under-appreciated classics. After a host of issues, including health, the group disbanded in 2002.

Fast forward to 2007: The band reformed for a hometown reunion show, and rumors swelled of an upcoming new album. Picked up by hometown label Fat Wreck Chords, many wondered if this was just another band trying to milk the proverbial cow. On the contrary, I will make a very bold statement, probably borderline sacrilege to many, and proclaim that Destroy Their Future is the band's most complete, well-crafted and overall best album. Loaded with a plethora of vocal styles, such as the trotting, slurring sing-along in album's opener "Sons of Avarice," to the infectious anthem "Smile on Me," or the driving mid-tempo cut "Or, Don't You Remember," no two tracks sound alike, yet all flow perfectly without any filler.

What stands out most noticeably are the various vocal patterns and harmonies. Going from ballad to shouting melody, "Speak, Oh Heart" captures the band slowing things down, but staying true to the honest essence of the record. Continuing on that very idea, "Razorblades," with its darker verses and tone, further showcases the group's uncanny ability to blast into the inevitable booming chorus -- a constant theme throughout the record.

One of my favorite aspects, aside from everything previously mentioned, is the production. Crisp, clean, yet hardly over-produced, the tone and sound quality perfectly blends everything from intricate guitars, gruff vocals, blended harmonies and blasting choruses. It's a clear example of how a band should sound in the studio to capture the ferocity of a well-respected live show.

Coming back to my initial point of timing, Destroy Their Future is only the latest contribution in a year of great albums placing emphasis on great rock songwriting. Maybe in their earlier days, such art wasn't as respected on the large platform it is now, so it's only fitting of the band to return with such a strong recording. For old or new fans of American Steel, this is essential.

 

 
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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.
floggingmicah (April 6, 2009)

Awesome fucking record.

kylewagoner (January 22, 2009)

I'm going with your score and everyone else's. 9/10. It's not missing anything, but it's still not like like WOW, THAT WAS THE BEST ALBUM EVER! Just really fuckin' good. And it's not unimpressionable or anything like that. I feel like giving it a 9 is taking something from it, but whatever. One of the best albums I own.

soundclash (December 27, 2008)

bonerific

TommyPickles (July 13, 2008)

Fucking amazing album. I can't even explain how good these guys really are.

drewl (October 15, 2007)

it lost half a star back when it was just an infection?

cuapunkradio (October 11, 2007)

infectious* and this is the real score

cuapunkradio (October 11, 2007)

good review, this ablum is infections. 'dead and gone' is the song of the year.

damo (October 11, 2007)

couldn't get into this to start with but the chorus on most sings now makes me wanna punch the air and sing at the sky. Some cracking songs from a band i only checked out as Fat were releasing their record

baseball (October 11, 2007)

i missed the boat on this band so this is the first record i've heard by them

never heard Communique really either, but i love this record

so if this doesn't stack up against their old stuff then this band might become one of my favorites

some great lyrics on this as well

HurricaneAwesome (October 7, 2007)

This new record blows, what a disappointment. I agree with what was said earlier that some of these songs sound like they were meant to be for a Communique record but were then redid to sound more like AS.

telegraphrocks (October 7, 2007)

HonestAbe, yes, Apocalypse Hoboken is GODLY! (in a drug-way).

I was talking to Todd Pott at a show a few months back... he reeked of booze, cigarettes, piss, and man-cum. Kind of sick, but really nice.

ChrisKretzer (October 6, 2007)

Fantastic album.

Pales in the face of Jagged Thoughts, though.

Still a strong comeback.

telegraphrocks (October 4, 2007)

When this first leaked, I snatched it, gave it a few spins, and thought "meh".

Since three days ago, I gave it another shot, and pretty much just fell right in-fuckin-love with it.

Went out and got the real thing, and I can't stop listening to it.

Cheers.

HonestAbe (October 4, 2007)

Fuzzy-
Yea I guess I can understand that, around here we have band like Apocalypse Hoboken that are huge but no one really cares outside Chicago.
I just know I've been around long enough to have heard of these guys, and never really knew them to be very big, but maybe there one of those appreciated after there time bands or somehting.
personally I don't see what the big deal is, but I guess you could say the same about Hoboken

KevinH (October 4, 2007)

Upon further listens I would like to add one thing. I agree with Dante's assessment as it applies to one song: "Razorblades" definitely sounds like it should be a Communique song. Especially the very beginning.

ozmanx (October 4, 2007)

I give this album a solid B. Don't think it was worth the wait though.

Fuzzy (October 4, 2007)

Abe-
Ask Bay Area kids if "nobody really cared about" American Steel. It's a little different out here, and kind of blows me away.

KevinH (October 3, 2007)

I loved Rogue's March, had mixed feelings about Jagged Thoughts, and I didn't care for Communique at all. I had absolutely no idea what to expect from this, but can say at this point after a few listens that I'm blown away. This is really good stuff.

HonestAbe (October 3, 2007)

I was planing on it, thanks

Dante3000 (October 3, 2007)

Is HonestAbe going to keep posting that until it's addressed? I can't really say anything because the people I knew before American Steel became Communique were big into the band so my perspective might be a little skewed.
I still remember when my friends band opened for them at Gilman we we're like, "Oh my god, you're opening for American Steel? You're totally going to get eaten alive"...I don't think they actually do that at shows anymore.
-Dante

Dante3000 (October 3, 2007)

Is HonestAbe going to keep posting that until it's addressed? I can't really say anything because the people I knew before American Steel became Communique were big into the band so my perspective might be a little skewed.
I still remember when my friends band opened for them at Gilman we we're like, "Oh my god, you're opening for American Steel? You're totally going to get eaten alive"...I don't think they actually do that at shows anymore.
-Dante

HonestAbe (October 3, 2007)

So what's with bands that nobody really cared about when they were around making these "triumpherant" returns?

killdefenses (October 3, 2007)

favorite album of '07 so far.

damnitsderek (October 3, 2007)

Jesus Christ I want this so bad.

danperrone (October 2, 2007)

chris, you are mr. predictable...no question

also this band is not very good

hitlerbadzakgood (October 2, 2007)

this album is amazing and i can safely say, after listening to it for 4 hours from lansing to toledo and back, its number 1 or 2 on my list as my favorite album of 07. this album really made the long drive go by fast.

i really dont see the communique references to much though, maybe on one or 2 songs. but thats evident considering they share almost every member. this sounds like a bridge in between rouge's march and jagged thoughts. they did an excellent job at throwing away comparisons to those that may borrow/steal elements from thier music (i.e. AGAINST ME!). amazing song writing, great production and sound quality, this is an essential.

gregs (October 2, 2007)

"Gregs, no I don't. I think Jagged Thoughts sounded like a band that was in a transition period. They weren't sure about where to go, but it was still an American Steel album. It showed the seeds of what would grow into Communique."

I totally agree with the above

"This however is much more distinct in sounding like Communique trying to play American Steel songs. It sounds like Communique is what would come naturally to this band but they're trying to write different songs. I still like it but I think it lacks what I love in both bands."

You lose me here. Maybe a song or two would work on the last Communique EP. But overall? This is American Steel all the way to me.

mclz (October 2, 2007)

amazing record
one of my top of 07

PersonalResponsibility (October 2, 2007)

Great album.

nocigar (October 2, 2007)

been meaning to nab this baby up.

Rastid (October 2, 2007)

boring.

Dante3000 (October 2, 2007)

Gregs, no I don't. I think Jagged Thoughts sounded like a band that was in a transition period. They weren't sure about where to go, but it was still an American Steel album. It showed the seeds of what would grow into Communique. This however is much more distinct in sounding like Communique trying to play American Steel songs. It sounds like Communique is what would come naturally to this band but they're trying to write different songs. I still like it but I think it lacks what I love in both bands.
-Dante

elephantdwarf (October 2, 2007)

this record is really fun. i'm into it. the one thing i have to complain about is how it sometimes sounds like they want to be alkaline trio really bad in spots. if they did away with that this would be an 8. right now i have it at about a 7.

RedScare (October 2, 2007)

To the guy that remarked that this is over-produced...uhhh, no. Their guitar player recorded the fuckin' thing! That said, it is their best sounding record, which I think is really cool that they did it themselves and did a good job of it.

RedScare (October 2, 2007)

"San Fran Bay Area scene", huh Chris? Is that anything like the Richmond/Arlington/DC/VaBeach scene? C'mon now!

Besides, they're East Bay.

gregs (October 2, 2007)

Great album. No complaints.

Dante, you don't think Jagged Thoughts has way more Commuique-ish songs than the new album?? I sure do.

Jonnyrawker (October 2, 2007)

I dig it. Finally something thats a departure from the "fat" sound. Don't get me wrong... i own pretty much everything fatwreckchords has put out lately... almost all of it in regular rotation, but this is refreshing for them.

Dante3000 (October 2, 2007)

To draw the obvious (and bad) comparison it sounds like Communique covering American Steel. I love both bands and they're both great for separate reasons (like Link-80 and Desa) but they are distinct and different and when blended they don't sound as great as they do separately. There's a couple of songs (like "Smile on Me") that sound like they were meant to be Communique songs that just got put on this album and then they tried to change them slightly to make them more American Steel-esque.
I enjoy the album but it sounds a little confused.
-Dante

Nap (October 2, 2007)

No 9, Yeh 7

briennis (October 2, 2007)

Not very good. Way overproduced, and I don't like the thing that one guy is doing with his vocals. There's about four songs I'd listen to again for fun. "Speak, Oh Heart" and "To The Sea"... i dont understand how anyone could like 'em.

HonestAbe (October 2, 2007)

So what's with bands that nobody really cared about when they were around making these "triumpherant" returns?

ThoughtriotAF578 (October 2, 2007)

Really exited for this. Im about to walk into town to pick it up, along with the new AF release. I hope the store has them.

Toxic_Toast (October 2, 2007)

their self titled is by far their best.

this is somewhere in between rogues march and jagged thoughts in terms of style. id give it a 7.

ven89 (October 2, 2007)

It's alright. Nothing spectacular. I'd rather listen to Jagged Thoughts or Rogue's March. Still can't wait to see em live.

baseball (October 2, 2007)

after reading this, now i really want this

score is for the record store 2 blocks away from me closing and thus probably not having time to pick this up until this weekend

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