Anchor Arms / Madison Bloodbath - Split [7 inch] (Cover Artwork)
Staff Pick

Anchor Arms / Madison Bloodbath

Split [7 inch] (2010)

Kiss of Death

Anchor Arms have become more interesting with each subsequent release (and there have been a lot of them lately). While the band's early releases were competent enough slabs of Gainesville punk, the band has really started to carve out their own unique niche in the genre, adding more hardcore-tinged elements to their newer songs, toying with different song structures and employing horns to create even more urgency.

That trend continues on their half of this split with Madison Bloodbath, with the more anthemic moments of "High Noon" augmented with massive backing vocals and a choice saxophone outro courtesy of Derron Nuhfer. "The Body System" possesses a decidedly different edge, with a rollicking composition anchored by the excellent bass work of James Austin that, when combined with Nuhfer's sax, create something that sounds like it could've been written by Rocket from the Crypt in their prime.

On the other side of the wax, Madison Bloodbath work with a subtle dose of twang on the driving, brief "The Golden State Is Not So Golden." The band fleshes things out a bit more on "If 'Ifs' Were Fists, We'd All Be Jacked Up" with similarly positive results. The band's sound here is a little more polished and not quite as gruff as it was on their full-length, Gettin Loose With, but it's for the better. Whenever they release another full-length, it's bound to go over well with the Suburban Home Records/No Idea/cheap beer crowd.

On this split 7", both Anchor Arms and Madison Bloodbath showcase a bit of growth without abandoning their core sound. What more could we ask for?