Nightstick Justice - Claustrophobic [7-inch] (Cover Artwork)

Nightstick Justice

Claustrophobic [7-inch] (2008)

Grave Mistake

Record labels from the Richmond, Va. scene like Grave Mistake Records and No Way Records just keep releasing incredible hardcore records, and this EP is another gem coming from the the first label mentioned (although the band is actually from California). This time, Nightstick Justice has produced an EP that reeks of energy and anger. The sound has been made tighter and more powerful in comparison to the first demo tape, making this record full of intensity.

What I like about this 7" is the combination of the velocity and length of the songs. Many bands seem to think that they need to have the shortest possible songs in order to make them sound quick and aggressive, but NSJC has realised that you don't have to compromise. The three-minute song "Hypocrite" is just as fast and rushing as any less-than-one-minute track. Instead of wondering what hit you when the tune comes on, you actually get to enjoy and listen through it. You get time to get into it.

The band's influences are early Boston hardcore and Japanese hardcore as well. The most similar-sounding band I can think of must be Jerry's Kids. With lyrics that are mostly about how fucked up things are around you socially, you find yourself agreeing and understand why the band is "Sick and Tired" of everything. The vocals are grated and distorted, and along with the angry and hysterical melody, it makes you want to jump around, thrashing everything. NSJC utilises gang vocals on the right places, not overdoing it like some bands tend to do.

If you haven't already bought this EP, I suggest you get off your arse and buy the damn thing! In a few years, this could easily be looked upon as a classic hardcore record.