Tapping into the same urgency that makes bands like Rocket from the Crypt and New Bomb Turks so great, Cloak/Dagger come storming out with their second album, Lost Art. Clocking in at just over 30 minutes, the album is a blistering frenzy of garage-punk energy that kicks open the door, bowls the listener over, and gets out before they even have time to process what happened. The pacing of the album borders on relentless, with every song being pushed along by jangly, rapid-fire guitars that do an excellent job of blending the drive of the punk revival with the dissonance of the post-hardcore era. At times, songs like “Dead Town Beat” evoke the abrasive, surf-influenced drone of the Pixies, with the metallic grind of Surfer Rosa-esque guitars relentlessly hammering the riffs home. Cloak/Dagger are really at their best when the past is at peak intensity. “Dead Idols” and “Same Old Story” take the listener on a wild, pedal-to-the-metal ride that has a drive and intensity not often seen in the era of emo-rock dominance. All told, Lost Art is an album that feels like just that, as if it’s an album that’s trying to reintroduce us to a style of rock that’s been long forgotten after years of slick production and pop considerations, making this album an easy recommendation for anyone looking for a re-energizing trip back to the post-hardcore of the mid-'90s.
AllMusic Review by Gregory Heaney