Hit the Switch - Observing Infinities (Cover Artwork)

Hit the Switch

Hit the Switch: Observing InfinitiesObserving Infinities (2009)

Reviewer Rating: 3.5
User Rating:

Contributed by: dlangl4dlangl4
(others by this writer | submit your own)

Chino, California's Hit the Switch sounds a fuck of a lot like NOFX. But let me qualify that compliment. They don't sound like NOFX in every way imaginable. Oh no. They sound like a very specific flavor of NOFX. To specify a particular album they sound like, see Pump Up the Valuum. To specify partic.

Chino, California's Hit the Switch sounds a fuck of a lot like NOFX. But let me qualify that compliment. They don't sound like NOFX in every way imaginable. Oh no. They sound like a very specific flavor of NOFX. To specify a particular album they sound like, see Pump Up the Valuum. To specify particular songs they sound like from that album, see "Take Two Placebos and Call Ma Lame," "Clams Have Feelings Too" and "Stranger Than Fishin'."

What I'm trying to say is that they sound like NOFX, but only when NOFX blends their trademark pop-punk with hard skatepunk. The result is that Observing Infinities has the following qualities when compared to NOFX:

  1. replace Fat Mike's snotty vocals with Matt Hawks' abrasive and snotty vocals,
  2. minus NOFX's leading basslines and replace with melodic guitar solos,
  3. no super pop, power-pop, dub, reggae, or joke songs,
  4. no word plays in the lyrics,
  5. throw in some The Illusion of Safety-era Thrice technical breakdowns and solos, and
  6. throw in some Exile in Oblivion-era Strung out guitar work as well.
What I'm getting at is that NOFX has pushed their sound in the direction of almost every major genre surrounding punk, i.e. ska, dub, hardcore, power-pop, etc. On the other hand, Hit the Switch plays this one type of punk rock and nothing else. Not that playing just one type is a bad thing. It's just what they do and how they do it. And what they do, they do it well.

With 12 songs clocking in at 31 minutes and 21 seconds, Observing Infinities hits the listener with just the right amount of punk rock without feeling drawn out or saturated by filler. The first song, "Ancient Sunlight" starts off with what sounds like a lullaby before quickly exploding into exactly the type of sound I describedâ?¦skate rock with abrasive vocals covered by dual guitars mixing both melodic and faster leads.

The result can be pretty overwhelming at times, but that's a good thing here, as Observing Infinities is a polished and professional effort. Compared to the band's last release from 2006, this album is a huge step up.

If the trend continues, expect Hit the Switch to continue to improve. Observing Infinities becomes more and more listenable over time. But please don't misconstrue my excessive comparisons to NOFX. I don't think the band should change their sound or broaden their musical horizons. Not at all. They sound fine how they are and I can't wait for their next release. If this album is any indication of what Hit the Switch is capable of, I think it's a safe bet that this band is ready to fill their niche in the punk world.


People who liked this also liked:
Bomb the Music Industry! - ScramblesThe Flatliners - CavalcadeHit the Switch - Domestic Tranquility and Social JusticeNo Use for a Name - The Feel Good Record of the YearChuck Ragan - Gold CountryThe Swellers - Ups and DownsizingHeartsounds - Until We SurrenderBad Religion - The Dissent of ManThe Menzingers - Chamberlain WaitsA Wilhelm Scream - Career Suicide

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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.
federalibob (November 11, 2009)

When I saw them play "Ancient Sunlight" live. I was speechless, had to wipe my melted face off the floor, and hide the jizz stain on my pants... Fast, Intense, powerful and New... This album is solid from beginning to end, my only qualm is that it's too short, it's doesn't entirely fill my Hit the Switch fix.They created something that made me almost throw my Propagandhi albums out the window, almost. good job guys.

Alien (October 21, 2009)

This is awesome/ I also cannot wait to see what they write next.

Quicksand (August 27, 2009)

You're still talking about NOFX

dlangl4 (August 26, 2009)

Score is for thatsyouth. Haters can blow me.

dlangl4 (August 26, 2009)

Oh and this review and reviewer remind me a lot of Nofx as well, a few people like him and what he writes, but the rest fucking hate it. Funny shit. Score is for funny shit.

dlangl4 (August 26, 2009)

Score is for the review and for the reviewer. Top notch guy. One of the best this site has ever known.

Quicksand (August 26, 2009)

You should do a series of reviews where you just talk about NOFX the whole time.

thatsyouth (August 25, 2009)

I've always been a big HTS enthusiast on the org. I really like this album. I did like the first one a bit more though. But that's because I'm a sucker for the 90's skate punk feel that was pretty much every song on that record. The only songs I disliked on this album were Ancient Sunlight, Leader In Generic Punk... and Galactic Enemy. The rest are outstanding. I still consider The Everfading Afterglow to be the BEST song released this year. And I would consider Ample Bright for the top 10 but it was released back in 07 or 08.

and fuck you dlang! I was expecting some sort of shout out seeing as to how I'm the one that told you to pick up/review this album.

llmp (August 25, 2009)

Let me make sure I've got this straight...you're saying this band sounds something like NOFX?

clam_tears (August 25, 2009)

Cool artwork. Here's a coinsidence: http://www.punknews.org/review/8560

Also, blah blah blah NOFX blah blah.

hayman (August 25, 2009)

This is a sweet album. nothing like NOFX. For sure more like the Nitro stuff from a few years ago. I've always got time for tunes like this. Always seems to be what I go for, Bigwig and Belvedere fans take note.

spec (August 25, 2009)


RedElephant (August 25, 2009)

vocals sound more like post-Radinsky Ten Foot Pole..

spec (August 25, 2009)

Pretty good record, not as good as thier other stuff.
Review is bad.

friokir (August 25, 2009)

nofx?!?! exile in oblivion?! illusion of safety? jesus fucking christ. I will only forgive you if you don't play any instruments yourself, but what this review tells me, is that you're an extremely superficial music listener.

although I like their first one much, much more, I must say that this is one of the most unique sounding records I've ever listened to, especially in the skatepunkish/melodic hc/whatever crossover genre. And by that I mean the very unorthodox song structures, that quite clean distortion, those alt. country influenced guitar licks etc.

as for the score, I think I can't give it one, because I loved the first one, I was really dissapointed because this in general sounds a lot different, but I'll admit it's pretty damn awesome in it's unique weirdness.

review - 4/10

ugay (August 25, 2009)

nofx? u fail sir

punkengineer (August 25, 2009)

I don't hear the NoFX comparisons at all. To me they sound like the melodic hardcore Nitro Records Bands. Maybe the best two bands I can think they sound like is Bigwig or No Trigger.

thewayitshouldbe (August 25, 2009)

Not sure that I agree with the NOFX comparison. You can defiantly still hear some NOFX in their music, but I think they really distanced themselves from that on this album. Plus Matt lyrics are miles ahead of Fat Mike's, but I guess that kind of like comparing apples to oranges. Anyways HTS are some of the downest dudes you'll ever meet, and hopefully it won't take them as long next time to put out an another album.

mclz (August 25, 2009)

this record fucking rules, but this review is horrible.

the_other_scott (August 25, 2009)

Pump Up the Valuum is by far the worst album NOFX has put out since anything they did in the 80s.

ddb43 (August 25, 2009)

Do you think they sound like NOFX????

punker001 (August 25, 2009)

Really love this band and this is a really good album! Not sure I agree with the NOFX thing. They're much heavier and less poppy than NOFX. More like Bigwig if you ask me. Which is never a bad thing.

TheMike (August 25, 2009)

Nifty cover art. Will give the band a listen.

inagreendase (August 25, 2009)

Dlang, switch this score with your Thousandaires review and I'd agree.

This album's decent, definite step up from the last one. My review.

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