Agnostic Front – My Life, My Way (2011)

Posted: March 4, 2011 in Music

Just when you thought New York Hardcore was pretty dead, along comes the mayor to set it all straight again.

It has only been three years since Agnostic Front’s last release – Warriors – but it feels like a lifetime. Not long ago, we would have at least one release each year from someone in the NYHC scene. Over the last few years, however, the scene has disappeared. Sick Of It All, Terror, Gorilla Biscuits, and others are nowhere to be found. Legendary Madball released Empire early in 2010, but without much pomp and circumstance. In fact, it wasn’t until I was listening to My Life, My Way that I even remembered Madball’s release (which probably doesn’t speak well of its quality.)

If the scene needed a kick in the face, Roger Miret is definitely qualified to deliver the blow. Spending the last 30 years as the face of NYHC, Miret has molded his craft to absolute perfection. His lyrics are intelligent, on point, and speak inspiration to the entire hardcore community. Never one to shy away from controversy, Miret has held true to the belifs of unity and responsibility that have bonded the hardcore world for decades.

So does the new album hold up to previous Agnostic Front releases? Of course it does.In fact, it may be one of the band’s strongest releases in their storied career. The energy hasn’t wavered one bit – and the message is as concrete as ever. What has changed a bit is that the band – after experimenting with more of a “metal” influence the last two or three albums – appear to be 100% back to their hardcore roots. There’s no screwing around on this album. No cheap production effects or soundboard tricks. Just an onslaught of in-your-face hardcore like only they can deliver.

One thing also obvious on this release is the absolute perfection of the production. After using the incredibly talented Zeuss on Warriors, AF have switched gears and brought on Erik Rutan (GOATWHORE, CANNIBAL CORPSE, etc.) and obtained the services of Freddy Cricien (frontman of MADBALL) to master and mix the album. Never has the band sound more organic, more direct and more balanced – much of which I attribute to the new production team.

The end result? 13 tracks of sheer brutality that will have you lacing up your Doc Martins and heading to the pit. Bound to be an instant classic and potential hardcore album of the year, the album is far more than it even needed to be. All I wanted was for Agnostic Front to yell loud enough to wake up the scene.

Mission accomplished.

The record will be released in Europe on March 4, 2011 and in North America on March 22, 2011.

1. City Street
2. More Than a Memory
3. Us Against the World
4. My Life My Way
5. That’s Life
6. Self Pride
7. Until the Day I Die
8. Now and Forever
9. The Sacrifice
10. A Mi Manera
11. Your Worst Enemy
12. Empty Dreams
13. Time Has Come

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