Don't Push Us When We're Hot

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Drowningman released one amazing album -- 2000's Rock and Roll Killing Machine -- but then slowed their output to EPs and demo collections as they fought through lineup shifts, hiatuses, and periods of inertia. Well, Drowningman is still alive. 2005's Don't Push Us When We're Hot reintroduces Simon Brody's post-hardcore wrecking machine in all of its churning, chaotically triumphant glory, and the sly song titles are still in effect, too. (Example: "Luck, Love, Lifetime Guarantees and Other Things Assholes Believe In.") Unlike some of his peers, Brody doesn't want to change your mind, change the world, or change how sad he feels about what's-her-name. He's just generally pissed, and has the pound of acrid sarcasm to prove it. "Dude Status: Revoked" is a great title, right out of locker-room culture. But Brody twists that joke into a seething indictment of a backstabber. Opener "Yeah, You're Pretty But do You Think You'll Really Get Away With It?" isn't as lyrically direct, instead conveying anger through its brutal music; it sounds like broken pistons pumping away at splinters of metal and rust. And "John Cougar Mellencamp Is the White Devil" takes small-town hypocrisy to task over guitar mania and some impressively understated reflection from Brody. With their acerbic wit, occasional reflections, and corrosive rhythms (other standouts include "You're Pretty," "White People Are Stupid," and "Major Disappointment Reporting for Duty"), Drowningman is a new Jesus Lizard rearing up in the shadows of Dillinger Escape Plan. They have no pretension, and make very few attempts to lessen their blows. Don't Push Us When We're Hot is just muscle and brains, and it's one of the best post-hardcore releases of 2005.

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