The ten songs on Our Design are over barely before one gets into the pit. Clocking in at 16 minutes, there isn't a lot of time to sink your teeth into this release, but it'll get the blood going nonetheless. Starting out on "Practicing Uncertainty" with feedback and a rumbling bassline, one would never guess that this introspective start would give way to breakneck old-school hardcore. Although the band is from Philadelphia, their style is reminiscent of Boston bands like Fastbreak and In My Eyes. Horror Show keep the pace up high with circle pit anthems of despair, broken hearts, and violence. High-pitched screaming vocals are delivered in rapid staccato bursts, and the guitar trails ably behind. Not much creativity is infused in many of these songs, although "The Last Steel Mine" has a nice breakdown, yet the vocal intonation stays the same until stereotypical hardcore gang vocals kick in. Much of this is cliché of the old-school scene, but fans of such music will probably not care much as Horror Show infuses a burst of fresh energy into the scene, as they seemingly exist a notch above mediocrity, which is unfortunately where all too many old-school hardcore bands stand.
Share this page
AllMusic Review by Kurt Morris