SPITALFIELD – Remember Right Now

SPITALFIELD was originally a side-project formed in the Windy City put together by members of various local hardcore bands that wanted to explore the “sensitive” side of things back in 1998. On their Victory Records debut, the band’s topics deal mainly with relationships and the struggles found within. Musically, the band’s rhythm section is king, with bassist/vocalist (and newest member) T.J. Minich really pushing the album with driving, involved bass-lines that really lay weight to the album’s songs without overplaying. Drummer J.D. Romero is also to be credited for his flowing, hard-hitting drumming that alternates between straight time, to half-time beats to snare rolls while making effective use of punchy accents that keep the album flowing steadily throughout the album’s ten tracks. Guitarists Dan Lowder and Mark Rose keep things simple with a basic, minimalist approach, relying more on the clever usage of dynamics rather than flashy, fretboard wizardry. While most of the topics deal with personal relationship issues, they also branch out with songs such as “Stolen From A Great Writer” which seems to deal with the sterility of rock radio and trends, while “Am I Ready” almost comes off as motivational, self-help song brimming with postitivity. “Fairweather Friend” acts as a tell-off to the aforementioned with as much conviction as Minich and Rose can muster and this is where I run into problems with this album/genre, as the band’s old hardcore roots should have come into play for at least this song to really give the “fairweather friend” the anger he deserves. Rose and Minich sing well, and in key, but it’s just not my bag, and while that’s just a personal beef, there are people out there that will eat this up like Monica Lewinsky eating pie at an all-you-can-eat buffet. Songs such as “Those Days You Felt Alive,” “Five Days and Counting” and the REPLACEMENT-inspired closer, “Make My Heart Attack,” are undeniably infectious and catchy. (Victory Records)

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