review Hot Water Music's "Caution"

Hot Water Music - "Caution"
By Shawn Vehrs

Gainesville, Florida's Hot Water Music returns to the forefront of post hardcore with the band's second offering from legendary artist-owned label, Epitaph records.

With six prior full-length albums, multiple 7 inches, a smoking live record, a BYO split, and eight years almost constantly on the road under their belt, Hot Water Music has consistently and effectively raised the bar time and time again with each new effort.

The band's latest album "Caution" produced by Brian Mcternan who also produced the band's last acclaimed album "A Flight and a Crash" is no different, without a doubt their best record to date, Caution is nothing short of a wake up call to a scene which has been infested with gimmicky pop punk acts who really have nothing important to say at all.

Dual Guitarists/Singers Chuck Ragan and Chris Wollard's intensely powerful deliveries force the listener to take notice within the first two seconds into the lead track "Remedy", where Ragan defiantly screams "I need a remedy of diesel and dust, something I can taste with the things I can trust.."

And just when you think you're in for a record that's poised to be rough around the edges, the next track "Trusty Chords" switches it up with an atypical but equally impressive melody driven song that speaks loudly about the importance of music, and the sanctuary that it provides us from the sometimes atrocious world we live in.

With other highlights including "I Was On A Mountain," which very well could have been the album's title track, "Wayfarer" and "It's All Related," it is seemingly apparent that the word "filler" is not a word that these guys have in their vocabulary.

The secret ingredient in Hot Water Music's recipe is Ragan's desperation-fueled tendency to belt out lyrics so earnestly that if you didn't know any better you might believe that these just might be the last words that he ever speaks.

Bring to the table George Rebelo's masterful work on the trap set which extends far beyond the typical kick/snare repetitive simplistic rhythm that has been a staple of the genre in the past, and Jason Black's lightning quick fingers on the bass guitar, and this is a band that refuses to be pigeon holed in the category of

But like every great band, Hot Water Music's records are only there to serve as an appetizer for the main course, the live show. This is a band that simply must be experienced live to fully appreciate.

In a time when many believe punk rock has drawn it's last breath, and the final nails on the coffin have been pounded into place with the turn of the new millennium, it seems quite apparent that thankfully, somebody forgot to mention it to the guys in Hot Water Music.

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