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Label: Wasted Wax Records

Date: September 25th, 2020

It will probably take you longer to get through this review than the entire “Black EP”, but I’ll write it anyway.

I guess those much deeper into the hardcore punk scene have a better insight into the colorful (browse it to understand) discography of this Canadian quintet. Me, I didn’t have a clue about the band, though they are seven years old. Having in mind seven years is like thirty five in hardcore punk years, my ignorance grows further obvious.

In the meantime, Citizen Rage have come to the “black stage” in their career. Not that they are on the downhill slide at this point. I’m once again referring to their cover artworks. Furthermore, this “black stage” cannot quite be understood as a symbolic for the topics covered, or music presented on the “Black EP”. It is clear to anyone with even a slightest knowledge of music that punk does not revolve around topics carrying too much light. Also, it goes without saying Citizen Rage did not go for any sort of black metal infused hardcore punk. Even if the promo photos reveal a band member wearing a t-shirt by one of my favorite black punk metal acts. There’s a hint of a blast beat in “I Will Fucking Kill You”, but that’s about it.

Other than that, there are a couple of thrash metal crossover moments. The rest of “Black EP” is comprised of pure bred hardcore punk, along the lines of Madball, Agnostic Front and their likes, along with a tangible influence of a more melodic line of bands like Ignite or Comeback Kid. Just to name the most famous among the influences taken in by Citizen Rage. The EP is quite straight forward, as a punk record must be. No swerving across the long ago set borders. Speed, roughness, heavy breakdowns and brutal honesty. Not to forget the characteristic dual and gang choruses. Basically, nothing new or unheard. Yet, “Black EP” stands as a record that could stand the test of time. Not for its innovativeness, but for its impact on the listener. It impacted me enough to look out for different colors. And not just in a racial respect which is certainly one of the reasons for this record’s coloring.

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