Hoods - Pray For Death (Cover Artwork)
Staff Review


Pray For Death (2003)


Every label has that one band, the one that always seems to be in the background, the one that is always stuck in the middle of comps, the one that never seems to get the same attention as their labelmates, and The Hoods are that band on Victory. That has always baffled me, while I personally have never liked this band all that much, they are basically textbook Victory. Back in the mid-nineties when mosh metal seemed to be at its peak, no one seemed to notice this band, and Victory didn't seem to push them. Now, with Victory focusing on "emo pop", you can bet that this band will probably remain relegated to a footnote in the label's future plans

This album actually surprised me, mainly because I expected to hate it with all my heart. But try as I might, I really couldn't. The Hoods play tough guy hardcore, you know, heavy breakdowns, growly vocals, the occasional metal riff, the whole nine yards. But considering that most other bands doing this style are just plain bad, The Hoods manage to escape my wrath (nothing like grading on a curve, eh?). While nothing on this album really stands out for being amazingly revolutionary or different, I couldn't help but nod my head at times.

The lyrics are pretty bad, and the fact that Victory had the audacity to compare Mike Hood to Nate Gray is pretty hilarious. I wasn't expecting poetry when I opened the CD booklet, but when I read lines like "drama makes me step, everyday it gets worse, my stomach twists in fear when the shit starts to turn, a friend pulls a knife and starts to attack, I'd take their life if I could get you back" I can't help but cringe. All the bases are covered here: hopelessness, friends stabbing you in the back, getting jumped, hating people, being lied to, and hating people. In all fairness, the band does sometimes try to be a little bit positive. The song "By My Side" is about reclaiming your life after years of being down.

If you're a fan of heavy hitting bands like Hatebreed, Until the End, and Bury Your Dead (although this band mixes it up a little more than these others), you'll probably dig this album. Bands like this should forever be in debt to Shattered Realm. Why is that? Because thanks to Shattered Realm I can always say "Hey, I don't really like this, but at least they're better than Shattered Realm!"

John and Kitty MP3