Western Addiction - I'm Not The Man That I Thought I'd Be [7-inch] (Cover Artwork)
Staff Pick

Western Addiction

I'm Not The Man That I Thought I'd Be [7-inch] (2015)

Fat Wreck Chords

On their latest release, I’m Not The Man That I Thought I’d Be, Western Addiction continues playing the kind of hardcore that wouldn’t have been out of place on a bill with the Gorilla Biscuits in the late 1980s. Which is saying a lot, since many of the bands who attempt to recreate this style of hardcore either lean too hard on the thrash metal albums they listened to growing up or are technically precise but lack all the heart that made hardcore punk so vital in the '80s. Western Addiction succeeds at not falling into any of these traps.

The three songs on this 7-inch make you want to walk out of your job, grab a skateboard and pretend you’re a teenager again. That isn’t to say the themes touched on don’t come with a fair amount of worldly experience. The title track, a duet between Jason Hall and Dara from the band Serpent Crown, touches on the regret of growing older and realizing that no matter where you pictured yourself as an adult you rarely end up there. It also works out to be one of my favorite duets on a hardcore album since Cinder Block provided vocals on the Good Riddance song “A Credit to His Gender.”

The band doesn’t let up anywhere on this release, which is refreshing since so many bands feel the need to do an acoustic song or slow the pace down for a song to break up the monotony these days. Western Addiction succeeds throughout this release, and their careers, of not sounding monotonous. Which, to me, seem to be the better option.

A demo (from the full length album due out later this year) of the song, “The Clatter and Hiss” closes this release out. Which due to the shoestring budgets many hardcore albums in the '80s were recorded on, gives the song even more of a classic hardcore feel than the other songs on the album. Their previous 7-inch, Pines, was one of my favorite releases from 2013, it was good to hear these guys have remained as vital as they were then. It’s also good to know we aren’t going to have to wait another two years to hear from one of the best bands in the punk rock scene today.