Various Artists

NYC Takeover, Vol. 1

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The problem with a live hardcore album is that it inevitably fails to capture the full show experience -- there's a feeling of participation and excitement that a recording won't do justice. In other words, a good punk show is better experienced than simply listened to on disc. Having said that, Victory Records presents NYC Takeover, a collection of live sets from Victory bands recorded during the CMJ fest in October 2000. Inspired sets from All Out War and Skarface stand out, the latter's set including a curious collection of old-school breakbeats, but this lengthy disc (48 songs in all) succumbs to a certain level of monotony as it wears on. If the listener is into these bands to begin with and knows the songs, then there's probably some fun to be had; otherwise, the casual listener is advised to check out some of the groups in person for a more complete experience, or to pick up some of their studio output.

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