Grave for the Fireflies - Bitten (Cover Artwork)
Staff Pick

Grave for the Fireflies

Bitten (2005)


Grave for the Fireflies is a band that should serve as a harsh wakeup call to a lot of people. Straight hardcore punk out of a Southern California scene diluted with black hair dye and faux metal, they're bringing eleven tracks full of raging jams that will put holes in your speakers.

Eleven tracks in less than twenty minutes, you're damn right these guys mean business, and they'll let you know straight from the outset. Vocalist and guitarist Richie Verdugo sounds eerily similar to Travis Reilly in his Scraps and Heart Attacks days, only shouting over the vicious buzzsaw attack reminiscent of the Nerve Agents. That potent mixture does nothing but impress throughout the course of the entire album, as the band displays ferocity and a solid level of songwriting skill just the same. The delivery is crisp, effective, and in your face the entire time. "Mr. Scarecrow's Heart Is Not Broken..." could have easily been a Black Flag track, with the intense drumming and even more intense shouted vocals, all over a real rock‘n'roll feeling rhythm that packs a serious bite of its own.

The good news -- it only gets better from there. Each track makes you want to pump your fist and start a circle pit even more than the last, as the songs seem to take on an angrier, darker tone as the album progresses. And for this style of music, that couldn't be a better piece of commentary. The dirty, ripping guitars and gang vocals of "Eyeliner" make way for the take-no-prisoners and make-no-friends lyrical approach;

Girl pants on your body,fast hair cuts,fast hair cuts / Mascara on your eyes, your old tattoos are all covered up / Shame on you, this new hardcore scene / Boys kiss the boys to impress the girls, put some guy pants on / Cut your fucking hair, no identities / Fuck your fashion scene, girl pants on your body.
Their blunt approach also tackles such topics as the JFK assassination, war, and suicide, all taken on from different standpoints than you would usually find, and the fresh spin only fuels their unrelenting attack. These guys are even more loud and in your face on the last track than the first, drums firing like machine guns, guitars blazing, thick bass present through it all; this is a well orchestrated attack.

This is music meant to be listened to at maximum volume, music to make you think about what's going on inside your punk and hardcore scenes, music to make you break shit and question authority, just how it should be.