When casting their critical eyes back on the roots of American Hardcore, revisionists more often than not overlook Suicidal Tendencies. Fair enough, a fast track musical evolution and a jump to bigger record labels diluted their early sound, but you’d be a fool to deny the influence domestically and, as word got out, internationally, of the early Eighties ST incarnation.
Still fronted by Mike Muir, who’s doggedly kept the ST name alive for over 3 decades, this is their first studio album in many, many years (the clue is in the title Holmes) and they are clearly back in 2013 with something to prove.
Track one “Shake It Out’ is driven by a defiant “Suicidal’s Back” chant, Mike howling like Ozzy, and dryly requesting someone to please get him “a Diet Pepsi”, hah! Of course, the 2013 ST are far removed from their early self, slugging out highly polished thrash, layered hard rock riffage and the funky breaks that have defined their most popular output. Tellingly, for a guy who has been through the peaks and troughs of the music industry, Mike’s lyrics revolve about self-resolution, staying true to yourself, and making the most of life. Pretty good PMA I’d say and full of conviction.
Suicidal will forever be associated with skateboarding, and track seven, the rowdy “Show Some Love… Tear it Down”, features vocal props from, amongst others, Danny Way, Tony Trujillo, the Olsen bros, and Mike’s own big bro Jim. That kicks down the door for “Cyco Style” which is the essence of this bands agenda, wrapped and loaded in 4:40minutes of molten blast…. “bombs away”… you got it.
I’m not bowled over by all thirteen of “13”s tracks, but there are some solid moments that I can get in to. For diehard Suicidal fans I’d have thought this album will easily satisfy, and make for a decent addition to the collection. Now, fix that bandana, and get in the pit Cyco…