Terror - One With The Underdogs (Cover Artwork)


One With The Underdogs (2004)


Last year, the boys of Terror hit the hardcore scene in the face with a snow shovel when they released the viciously brutal Lowest of the Low. Now, a little over a year later and a new label under their belt, Terror gives a second stab into the world of hardcore with One With The Underdogs. Now, let's face it, if you don't like tough-guy moshcore, then don't pick up this album. You will find it to be the epitome of everything you hate about tough-guy moshcore. Terror in themselves are not really that inventive of a band, they just make music that is about as pleasant to listen to as getting hit by cars "Meet Joe Black" style. Yet, at the same time, for people that can tolerate the tough-guy moshcore sound, Terror does a pretty good job of making it good. In Lowest of the Low they reached new levels of simplistic, but still incredibly brutal, hardcore. In One With The Underdogs they didn't try to make it anymore brutal, but in the end, they ended up with an album fifty times as raw as their debut. The opening title track is pure heavy hitting hardcore. Simple guitar riffs, fast drumming, prominent bass, and Scott Vogel's perfect genre scream. Actually, it is not really a scream more so as it is a very loud, very angry yell. The production of the album showcases his yell much better than Lowest of the Low. The vocals are a huge improvement over the debut from all the band members. This time around, Terror employs the traditional "every-band-member-yells-two-words-that-live-the-audience-can-easily-scream-and-pump-fist-to." In songs like "Crushed by the Truth," this technique completely makes the song as a frantic "not me" is yelled after about 1.5 seconds of Vogel's yell. It all builds up to a collective "crushed by the truth" from everyone, and the climax of the short and intense song is made complete by this vocal bombardment. Speaking of vocals, a very odd aspect of the album for me was the guest appearances. Seemingly usually reserved for the latest commercial rap single, Terror employed the use of Jamie Jasta, Lord Ezac, Hard Cory, and Freddy Cricien on various songs. The end result is a little bit disconcerting. I have never been a huge fan of guest vocals, especially when they are singing verses instead of just doing random backing vocals. But on songs like "Spit My Rage," the song is hurt by the guest appearance of Jamie Jasta, mainly because his scream doesn't sound nearly as cool as Vogel's. For the guitars and everything else, it is normal Terror, some songs a little bit sped up, others just designed for a steady head thrashing beat. They throw in a few more guitar hooks this time around. "Not This Time" actually has an intro instead of just launching full on into pure brutality. But when it starts, it maintains the slower beat, relying on what is no more than a simple mosh riff to carry the entire song. Overall, the guitars are a bit more complex than their previous effort, especially on the faster songs like "Are We Alive?" and "Find My Way." The faster songs gain a sort of frantic raw energy that explodes on the standard hardcore mosh riff, where in some instances, the boys of Terror actually use two or three different ones in a row before continuing on with the song. There really isn't that much that is inventive or new about this album. But for fans of the more standard, brutal hardcore, this album is a must. One With The Underdogs may be cliché in some of the lyrics and swagger of the album, but it is so much tougher than the standard tough swagger and so much more intense than the standard expected intensity.