Shelter's roots lay in the legendary New York hardcore group Youth of Today, which stressed straight edged aggression over melodicism. Although Shelter does have aggressive elements in their songs (the track "Rejuvenate"), they can get away with the ultra-tunefulness of "Revealed In Reflection" and "I Know So Little (So Well)," which Youth of Today could never have. Singer Ray Cappo is an Eastern philosophy student (spending a total of two years in India, studying Sanskrit, natural medicine, philosophy, and yoga), and has been known to lead the audiences at Shelter concerts in religious chants. The group also tries their hardest to know their audience by sticking around after shows to meet their fans and discuss various topics. So it's only natural that the band's lyrics deal with the views and ideals that Cappo and company feel so strongly about. The track "Hated to Love" deals with listening to your own heart despite what others say, while "Whole Wide World" is about trying to achieve peace of mind in this troubled day and age. If you appreciate hardcore's energy, but feel that the music and lyrics are too one-dimensional for your tastes, chances are you'll find those missing elements in Shelter's message-filled music.
Share this page
AllMusic Review by Greg Prato