Hot Water Music are one of those bands that have been churning out quality releases for years, without ever gaining the recognition they really deserve. HWM really are one of the most hardworking bands in the business, and can be found playing live nearly every day of the year! When HWM signed to Epitaph recently hopes where high that the band would finally emerge from the underground scene that they had so long been a part of. However despite the critics lauding praise upon their debut Epitaph release, 'A Flight And A crash', many fans felt that the album was disjointed and not as good as some of their earlier albums. One year later, the band have returned with their latest offering, 'Caution', an album that should prove to the world just how good they are.
HWM can never quite be slotted into any one musical genre; such is the diversity of their sound. They play something that floats around post hardcore, whilst taking in a number of musical sights on the way. The other very crucial factor to remember is just how talented a group of musicians this is, both in the writing and performing departments. 'Caution' is an album that demands your attention and forces to you to really listen to the songs on offer.
'Caution' kicks off with 'Remedy' a passionate and infectious track that immediately draws you into the album. The band then dive into 'Trusty Chords', a song that sees the band in rock territory, with a fine chorus and great guitar work. 'I Was On a Mountain' sees the band change direction again with angry and strained vocals complementing the mellow instrumental work. These first three songs set the scene for the entire album, they are of an incredibly high standard and showcase exactly what HWM are about.
The rest of the album continues in much the same vein, with talent and variety in abundance. 'It's All Related' begins in a very sombre mode, and the song really hinges, and works, on the gravelled vocals of Chuck, especially during the verses. The nice thing about the album is how it manages to balance the mood of the songs. For example 'Alright For Now' can be classes as a very dark and melancholic song, especially instrumentally, whereas 'Wayfarer' is one of the most upbeat songs the band have produced, complete with the chorus of "whoah-whoah". The album is rounded off in fine style with 'The End', an appropriate song for the album, but certainly not for the career of the band.
'Caution' is one of the best albums you will hear this year, and could well prove to be HWM's best album to date. I certainly don't think the band have produced a finer collection of songs. It is albums like this that make you realise why you got into the scene in the first place, with more passion and talent than most bands would dream of neatly packaged into the space of twelve songs. 'Caution' still may not be enough to give HWM the recognition they deserve, such is the nature of the industry, but will bring great listening pleasure to those wise enough to purchase it.
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