Sunday 21 July 2013

Barge - No Gain 7"

Here's a fast 7" for you. Much like Lifes who I reviewed earlier, Barge of a fast punk band. This new 7" was released in April by new US label Vinyl Conflict. It's being distributed by Grave Mistake Records amongst others. Barge for those that don't know, are a hardcore band from Richmond, Virginia. No Gain is their debut 7". They're influenced by the likes of Infest and inject their hardcore with waves of power violence. No song on their debut 7" is over two-minutes long!

It's also worth noting that Vinyl Conflict looks like an ace record store, which is very much contributing to their local music scene. I wish there was a record store like it where I live again.


1. Keep Your Money
2. Wasting Away
3. Your Lies
4. Live For Pain
5. Where's The Violence
6. Time To Learn
7. Don't Know The Truth
8. Plague Me

Barge smash it! No Gain is filled with the kind of PV influence hardcore that will smash your head in, but with some great punk undertones. They pack a lot into their short songs. Keep Your Money seems to last a lot longer than its fifty-six second playing time. Wasting Away starts off fast and then slows to a nice mid-pace groove which shows that Barge know restraint. That same restraint is exercised during the first half of Your Lies. It has that blackened hardcore sensibility that's popular now, before it's wiped out by more fastcore. Some people may be put off by the vocals slightly, but to me they fit in perfectly and add an abrasive edge too the music. Live for Pain seems to capture the anguish of everyday life perfectly.

Obviously, Barge has had to make their songs short to fit onto a 7", but that doesn't mean that they are gone in a flash. The second half of the records just carries their momentum forward with the chaos of Where's The Violence and Time To Lean. Don't Know The Truth sees their hardcore sensibilities shining through, with some breakdown inspired sections sitting beneath the vocals. The beginning of closing song Plague Me sounds like someone firing up chainsaws. Barge flit skilfully between groovy mid-pace sections and brief off-kilter explosions of violence. It's over in a flash and demands repeat listens.

I know this review seems short but Barge keeps things simple. Playing fast, loud and to their own agenda. Hats off to Vinyl Conflict for releasing this and to Grave Mistake for gaining wider attention for it. This won't be the last you hear of Barge for sure.

The 7" is streaming over at Barge's bandcamp page:-

The 7" can be bought as a digital download directly from Barge's bandcamp page.

Physical 7"s can be bought from Grave Mistake Records at

Barge don't have a Facebook page as far as I can tell (feel free to correct me though).

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