The Nerve Agents

Days of the White Owl

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The Nerve Agents steer clear of mainstream hardcore algorithms on Days of the White Owl, instead preferring to rely on memories of yesterday, as their breed of hardcore punk draws from such '80s cult favorites as the Misfits. Days of the White Owl focuses on short bursts of noise laced with sneering attitude that only punk manages to convey so well. As a matter of fact, the longest song contained within this 16-track album clocks in at 17 seconds short of three minutes. This brevity is not altogether uncommon when it comes to the punk genre, and the Nerve Agents do their very best within the short format of their songs. Vocalist Eric Ozenne barks out his lyrics with evident disdain toward anything and everything around him, and often sounds quite similar to Sick of It All. Guitarist Timmy Stardust rocks like it was 1985, and Dante Sigona could have easily learned how to play bass a week before they recorded this album. Unfortunately, Days of the White Owl misses its intended mark, and the Nerve Agents do not offer up much to attract new listeners. From the cheesy intro, "Spring Heeled Jack," which sounds more like a Scooby-Doo theme than anything close to spooky, to the rather outdated brand of hardcore punk they churn out, the Nerve Agents come off as more of a novelty act than a serious band. Days of the White Owl may appeal to those still locked in the '80s punk scene, but it's not much else.

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