defeaterDEFEATER – ‘Letters Home’
By confiding in a heavy narrative, Defeater’s music is like listening to an audio novel.  Since their first album Travels, the band has created a massive three album story about the lead singer’s grandfather who served in World War II.  With this latest release on Bridge Nine, Defeater’s storytelling can become a minor burden.  Although an established and respected band, Letters Home works fundamentally for their fans.  They may be perfectly satisfied with this statement, but this is like a step into limbo from the movie Inception; a dazed excursion into the deepest realm of hardcore dreams.  Most lyrically and musically familiar to Modern Life is War, the album refines hardcore at its most ferocious stem.  The album beings with ‘Bastards,’ a song of grievance which weeps out, “And still all I see is that bastard in me.”  Its follow up ‘No Shame’ sounds comparable to a tune off of Have Heart’s last effort for Bridge Nine, cementing the groove of Massachusetts hardcore.  ‘No Relief’ captures Defeater’s adamant hardcore ether, as ‘No Faith’ is bitter and indignant.  While they don’t supply the beyond violent ‘moshing’ nature of Converge or Coalesce, their lyrical passion has constituted a solid bond between the band and live crowd.  Album closer  ‘Bled Out’ pours every last bit of emotion onto the final seconds of the record, while ‘No Saviour’ also serves as a swan song of concluding testaments.  Without reading along to the album’s liner notes, the thought of a three part plotline could overwhelm new listeners.  Barked and wailed through fierce screams, the lyrical content may only work for people who take the time to dive head first into Defeater’s manifesto.  (7)





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