Following the hugely successful release of The Wrong Way which helped establish them as firm and permanent components of the hardcore scene, Los Angeles outfit Rotting Out are back with The Reckoning EP. It comes with two very special covers and the concept of a trilogy, in which vocalist Walter Delgado describes as being sectioned into “I know what I did, I know what I have and I know what I’m going to do”, ominous…
Opening track Born begins with a haunting feedback and sound clip from film Tombstone before kicking in bang on the word born with all the raw energy you come to expect from this group with a bass line so dirty it could never be washed clean, a racing, cacophonous tempo and visceral joint vocals that burst with the energy of pure punk angst.
With a similar film feel, Eyes Wide starts with a sound bite from Lawless, until the song explodes into gang vocals galore, a pounding drum beat to burst your ear drums and doom-mongering guitar work to send chills down your spine, whilst moving your entire body to an almost infectious beat.
After an eerie soundbite from Falling Down, End of the Road kicks in to end the section of Rotting Out’s own tracks and is arguably the strongest track on the record. Comprised of bile-filled selection of lyrics, razor sharp vocals that are almost painful to listen to and a guitar solo setting this track apart from its two previous tracks and ending this trilogy in a ballsy and different way.
I Don’t Care and Live Fast Die Young both previously by The Circle Jerks are given a makeover with chunkier and darker guitar riffs, gruffer and harsher vocals that are screamed rather than yelled in a traditional punk fashion down your ears, though the bass lines and drum parts remain true to traditional punk and remain ever prominent within the mix, providing the heartbeat to these killer iconic tracks
From this short release it is immediately obvious why Rotting Out have become such prominent figures within the hardcore scene; they produce short tracks full of raw, powerful energy, pure anger and true musical talent combining both the origins of hardcore punk and modern musical twists to create their own, unique take on modern hardcore.