Barge - No Gain [7-inch] (Cover Artwork)
Staff Review


No Gain [7-inch] (2013)

Vinyl Conflict Records

If ever you needed a soundtrack to help you perform some really destructive DIY like knocking down a large wall, then Barge would be your band, and this EP would be that musical accompaniment. There would be one downside in that with the eight tracks not reaching a total of nine minutes, that you'd either have to work damn quickly or get used to stopping to flip the thing over repeatedly.

Hopefully that gives you an initial insight into Barge's sound, but seriously this is crushing, no thrills (or frills) hardcore that comes from deep within the gut and this is certainly the case with the vocals which have an intense quality to them, as lyrics are barked and spat out in equal measure. Those vocals remind me a bit of Choke from Slapshot, and I get the sense of someone physically imposing up front with mic in hand delivering a visceral performance that is as in your face as it can be.

It's easy to bandy words like ‘ferocious' and ‘brutal' around when describing hardcore, but in the case of Barge they are two words that really do fit well in what I hear through these eight brief tracks, and the overall impression received is that the band are pissed off with the world and they'll stop at nothing to find some release for that feeling.

This EP is probably just the right length for me, as although I like the sound of the band, it just lacks something to make the tracks still in my head, despite the fact that they're tried to jackhammer them into my skull at least a dozen times now. It's raw and has absolutely no hint of being contrived, something which is always good to hear in any band and that's what I do like about it.