Useless ID - 7 Hits from Hell [EP] (Cover Artwork)

Useless ID

7 Hits from Hell [EP] (2018)

Fat Wreck Chords

Useless ID has been around since the mid ‘90s and have become a staple among the punk rock community. Their latest release is a shot in the arm that offers up 7 songs in under 5 minutes. 7 Hits from Hell is a welcomed return for these Israeli-based punks and hopefully serves as a segue for their next full length release.

Since their early days, the band’s sound has evolved into a grittier, rougher sound as evidenced on their last full length, State is Burning. The latest release offers somewhat of a combination of Useless ID sounds though, both old and new. The first track of the 7-inch is a great example of this. “Split” contains the pop sound of some of their earlier releases, but also mixes in a rougher sound reminiscent of their more recent albums. It’s clear that the band is influenced by groups like Bad Religion, No Use For A Name, and Lagwagon, among others. The sound of “Local Expert” offers a clear example of this influence. It contains the speed and tanicity of those early records, with Bad Religion-esque harmonies in the middle. “No Time” is another great example of this and it would fit really well on a No Use album. The band has even reworked one of their earliest recordings, “Too Bad You Don’t Get It” into a little reggae tune, before finishing the song with their classic Useless ID sound.

The lyric matter on 7 Hits varies, but in general, it contains a more light hearted approach than State is Burning. “Tour Song #2” touches upon the ups and downs of touring, while “Punx on the Other Side” is an ode to dead punk rockers and their lasting influence on the punk rock community. The latter song provides another great sample of the combination of the old and new sound evidenced throughout the record.

After 20-plus years of hard work and hard touring, it is clear that the band shows no sign of aging. Many bands tend to grow tame and lose their luster after a few decades, but this is not the case with Useless ID. Overall, fans of the band will be really happy with this record. And not only are the songs great, but the cover art by Sbam is absolutely awesome. 7 Hits from Hell is definitely a welcomed addition to any punk's record collection.