Dance. Pretend. Forget. Defend.

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Between the band name and album title, clearly at least one member of Fordirelifesake was frightened by a space bar at an early and impressionable age. Typographical preciousness aside, the first album by this Michigan quintet is mostly unpretentious metalcore. However, the group isn't afraid to introduce new elements into the sometimes stodgy confines of the style. The most effective songs on this album are the two most unusual, a recasting of the Nine Inch Nails instrumental "March of the Pigs" that basically sounds like the original song overlaid with a new chunky lead guitar part, and the almost mesmerizing guitar squalls of the seven-minute closer, "The End of the Beginning," which skirts Sonic Youth territory in parts. (There's also an unlisted bonus track at the end, a deadpan power metal parody that suggests that this crew may have a functioning sense of humor, a rarity in metal circles.) Too much of the rest of the album is generic metalcore with the usual lame vocals, but the best parts of Dance.Pretend.Forget.Defend. suggest that Fordirelifesake has a more interesting and experimental streak.

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