Turncoat - Turncoat [cassette] (Cover Artwork)
Staff Review


Turncoat [cassette] (2008)

Just a Audial

Though they're already broken up, at the time of their demise Turncoat might have been the best example of a Long Island band playing the slowly popularizing style of thrashy, elder-beckoning hardcore. Then again, they were close to being the only.

Although the recording is a tad cleaner than most things produced in the underground that decade, just everything about Turncoat seems to scream "80s." There's black-and-white liner notes. The vocals are cleanly snarled, yet completely incomprehensible (for lyrics, check the aforementioned liner notes). Also, it was released on cassette. Of course, the fine folks at Just a Audial provide you a code to download the whole thing in high-quality MP3s.

Highlights on this over-before-you-know-it album include: "Room," where the urgency is actually a bit more palatable than elsewhere; Side Two opener "Goners," where you get a rougher plow and nothing but some sound bites from "The Shining"; the stop-starts and bitter playfulness of "From the Inside"; and closer "Delusion," which has one of the rare mosh parts, so it's actually pretty welcomed.

If we're making comparisons, my very bare knowledge on this subject leads me to draw parallels with a more straightforward, better-produced Ceremony (notably the vocals). Phil Douglas and his Hobo House provides that very recording, a place where other bands like Capital, Iron Chic, Agent and Small Arms Dealer have all laid down tape.

Pretty, pretty, pretty good.