VIDEO REVIEW: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_4nP5pEgM4M

As a Soul Glo fan since 2019 and avid punk listener in general, I need all of you to know that I hit it first. Fantano may have reviewed this record before me (only because I was sick with COVID-19) but truthfully Soul Glo is MY BAND that I reviewed back in 2019 and Fantano is just trying to steal my clout. It's a shame they are popular now because of "Melon"

Now that we got that out of the way, let's dig into the music. Soul Glo flexes all their incredible strengths in this record (strengths I've been talking about for years but go off) i.e., the way they seamlessly blend together a variety of moods, energies, and genres into their hardcore, which makes for a very refreshing listen. Soul Glo knows best that hardcore is a very atonal and frankly limited genre that can get stale quick without an aggressive dose of creativity, and they have a lot of creativity to offer. Gold Chain Punk for instance has a manic melodic intro, an absolutely gnarly metalcore breakdown, and a super catchy hardcore outro. It all flows together seamlessly and that's kind of how the album continues to roll on from there.

What I really love about Soul Glo is how they exploit their fantastic rhythmic work that is so essential to hardcore in order to essentially create beats that work as a fantastic canvas for rapping. The vocalist sounds like a middle ground between the piercing vocalist of Siege and the fun chaotic vocalist of Bad Brains, and sometimes in his hardcore rambles he dips into rap territory. That's awesome, and the whole band follows suit in many sections throughout this album by performing songs that are explicitly hip hop. Hip hop sections blended with punk isn't a new concept to Soul Glo, but in this record, they execute it the best they ever have.

Soul Glo's songwriting is absolutely top notch on this record, and I'm glad the world is finally getting exposed to them with these songs. However, there is one flaw on this album that I really cannot overlook that does take away from the listening experience. The production on this record is harsh. I know that sounds like a lame thing to complain about on a hardcore record, but as someone who listens to a ton of screamo and powerviolence, I promise you it makes a huge difference. In Songs to Yeet at the Sun for example, which is very similar musically to this record, I can listen through that EP no problem on repeat because even though the screaming is harsh, the mix isn't. Diaspora problems on the other hand I find hard to listen to from start to finish without putting it down because the vocals cut through the mix so aggressively, I can't help but suspect it is clipping, which would explain the intense listening fatigue this gives me.

So, while there is the analytical side of me who loves a lot of the technical stuff going on here, there's also just the human side of me that doesn't enjoy listening to this record as much as previous Soul Glo releases due to the listening fatigue. Again, I know it sounds lame, but that's just the reality and it's important for any hardcore record to be mindful of this in the mixing/mastering process because it makes a big difference. So, I recommend Songs to Yeat at the Sun over this. That EP is equally on par in terms of songwriting, has production that doesn't hurt your ears, and also Fantano didn't review that one like I did.

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