Released on CD by Dischord in 1991, this digital version of End on End covers the complete recorded output of the legendary Rites of Spring: their self-titled LP, the All Through a Life EP, and one extra song. One of the first bands to be labeled emocore, Rites of Spring would seem to transcend all labels as their music cuts right through to the heart of universal human experience. Emotional? Yes -- check out the bitter memorial relived on "For Want Of," the pulse pounding moment-grab that is "Drink Deep," or the devoted searches for honesty and meaning explored on "End on End," "Theme," and really just about every track on the disc. Hardcore? Yes -- emerging from the D.C. scene, the music is pure focused energy, not a single note wasted. The band at times is fast and furious, at other times lush and evocative though always with a sense of drive and melody. Rites of Spring hint at some of the territory vocalist/guitarist Guy Picciotto and drummer Brendan Canty would later survey with Fugazi, but this band is much more than just a stepping stone. End on End, quite simply, is a testament to the rich possibilities of sincerity in music.
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AllMusic Review by Matt Kantor