Out to Win

Beg for Life

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On their debut album, Pennsylvania-based hardcore kids Out to Win (basically, an older band called Mushmouth with a couple of minor lineup changes) deliver ten blasts of metal-tinged hardcore with little in the way of sonic variety but scads of undiluted aggression. Favoring a swaggering mid-tempo alongside the usual hyperspeed blasts, Out to Win follow the same basic template from song to song; the only real difference is that on the handful of longer songs, like the nearly four-minute "Ghost Army" (almost "Stairway to Heaven" size, by the concise standards of hardcore), the shift from the low, threatening throb of the mosh part to the high-speed gallop of the chorus happens three or four times instead of once or twice. Nothing new here, then, but Out to Win manage to invest plenty of youthful energy into a style that seems like it should be all played out; this makes Beg for Life a more impressive listen than one might expect.

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