Review: Rancid – …Honor Is All We Know

Review: Rancid – …Honor Is All We Know

Rancid – …Honor Is All We Know
RancidCoverTrack Listing:
1.) Back Where I Belong
2.) Raise Your Fist
3.) Collision Course
4.) Evil’s My Friend
5.) Honor Is All We Know
6.) A Power Inside
7.) In The Streets
8.) Face Up
9.) Already Dead
10.) Diabolical
11.) Malfunction
12.) Now We’re Through With You
13.) Everybody’s Sufferin’
14.) Grave Digger

The Pier Album Rating:

Release Date: Oct 27th, 2014
Record Label: Hellcat Records
Official Website: Rancid Website

Artist Background:
The Bay Area gave birth a few decades ago to one of the most successful ska-punk bands to come out of the early 90’s, Rancid. The band just released their 8th studio album, the first one after 5 years. The band was expected to release the album in 2012, to coincide with their 20th anniversary tour, but that did not happen as planned. The wait was well worth it, however, as the band had the time to germinate their sound with those extra two years in order to release a great album.

Album Review:
Kicking things off for the album was, “Back Where I Belong,” a short high-energy tune that lets listeners know that the band is right where they feel at home. Right from the start, one can notice the musical influences of both old ska bands and the traditional punk riffs that made the band famous. The instrument that stood out the most was the bass, courtesy of Matt Freeman, especially during the chorus where the band is singing, “I’m Back.” Freeman’s bass efforts are absolutely insane, and in a way reminded me of the similar bass style Pete McCollough has from Streetlight Manifesto.

The album alternates between ska tunes and punk tunes, which proved to be a healthy combination. At times, the band chose to mix both heavy ska and punk sounds in the same song, most noticeably heard during, “Collision Course.”

The album has two classic tunes that will put any crowd into a craze when played. The first one is ska and the second is punk. The first, “Evil’s My Friend,” has every element imaginable that any ska-lover would want to hear, and even features a spooky little keyboard solo near the middle of the song. Although the phrase, “Evil’s My Friend,” is incessantly repeated, it doesn’t become tiring at all to listen to. This distinction is important, as many bands try this and fail miserably. Rancid, with this song, was able to succeed in this regard.

The second song that was absolutely killer was “Already Dead,” and this one leaned more into the punk category. The song features the vocalist, Tim Armstrong, powering through the verses and choruses with a raspy yet on key voice. In a way, this style reminded me of the Irish Punk-Rock group, the Dropkick Murphys, as far as singing is concerned.

Rancid did a great job at keeping this short little album interesting. It clocks in at a little over 30 minutes, and overall, managed to keep most of those minutes both interesting and exciting to listen to. The set up of the album, which alternates between ska and punk, helped a lot in this regard, since it makes it feel like not all songs are the same during playback.

For thirty minutes, it is guaranteed that every fan will find at least two new songs that they will want to hear nonstop. The only two songs I didn’t find very appealing were, “In The Streets,” and “Grave Digger,” because they lacked certain key elements that were present throughout the rest of the album, such as catchy hooks. Although the songs tend to be a bit short, I guarantee that anyone hearing these tunes will want to dance, making the five year wait worth every minute.

Written & Reviewed By: Juan Barragan

[Editors Note: All reviews are reflective of the album in it’s entirety, from start to finish. These reviews are the honest opinion of each writer/reviewer expressing their feedback as a genuine fan of the music. Each star rating reflects their review of the album, NOT the band. Music is subjective. Regardless of the review or star rating, we encourage you to listen to the music yourself & form your own opinion. Spread the awareness of all music in its art & contribution]