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Album Review: Counterpunch - Heroes and Ghosts

In the musical age of Auto-Tune, painful clichés and bands who care more about their hair than their sound, it's refreshing to find a punk rock act that go about their business with a genuineness and a passion for their trade, something seemingly lost on many of their peers. Counterpunch, out of Chicago, not only have this to their credit, but also manage to give a damn good account of themselves with their latest record 'Heroes and Ghosts'.

Combining a powerful, gritty sound with driving melodies and hooks, the 4-piece bring to the table a style reminiscent of The Swellers, with all the drive and gusto of Rise Against. Opener and title track 'Heroes and Ghosts' is a frantic start, taking off with a speed that is maintained throughout the record, whilst 'The Great Regression' is a master stroke of punk rock, with a huge chorus that yearns to be belted out in a live situation. 'We Believe' offers a heavier side to the band that is achieved seamlessly, slamming together edgy guitars and even edgier vocals, all in a 3-minute package.

'Strings of Destiny' is a much more simplistic affair, nothing fancy, just a straight punk rock song straight out of the 90s with a definite air of Useless ID. 'And Everyone's Right (Asshole)' slightly undermines what is an brilliant record thus far. A well crafted song though it is, backing vocals consisting of the words "Asshole, asshole, you're an asshole" are eerily remnant of Bowling For Soup (and realistically, that's never going to be a positive).

Closer 'So Long', as the title may suggest, serves to close out the album, and does so brilliantly, creating an impressive climactic tone to bring proceedings to their end. Having already shared stages with marquee acts such as Alkaline Trio and the aforementioned Rise Against, Don't bet against 'Heroes and Ghosts' catapulting Counterpunch even further into the limelight over the next year.


'Heroes and Ghosts' by Counterpunch is released on October 11th through Disconnect Disconnect Records.

Counterpunch on MySpace.

Liam McGarry

Alter The Press!