Monday 13 February 2023

Cages - Second Thoughts

Labels: Long Legs Long Arms/Middle-Man Records/Shove Records/Through Love Records

Formats: Vinyl/Digital

Release Date: 21 Oct 2022


1. How Quickly We Forget

2. A Sight For Sore Eyes

3. Every Dog Has It's Day

4. Someone Who's Working Really Hard On Being Someone

5. Sleepwalking In Potemkin Cities

In a sort of response to Edie Quinn's comment under the recent Drei Affen/Coma Regalia split review, I'm gonna be dropping some additional reviews over the coming weeks because I need to be less rigid in following my own schedule, but also because there's always so much amazing music that goes by me due to time and constantly catching up. This LP is a fine example of that. Cages are a band from Germany (featuring ex-members of We Had A Deal no less) and their debut EP Second Thoughts was released back in October of last year though some very fine labels, including Edie's own Middle-Man Records. On a completely separate note, this year's Brit Awards completely passed me by (don't ask) but from what I gather I didn't miss much.

With the combined experience and history of the members that make up Cages, Second Thoughts is a special release. ‘How Quickly We Forget’ plays very much on the band’s 90s emo/screamo influences without stepping into more modern-day emoviolence territories, thanks to mid-paced tempos and uplifting guitar work. The vocals do their bit as well, bringing to mind Refused and their historic album The Shape Of Punk To Come (A Chimerical Bombination In 12 Bursts) from the late 90’s.

‘A Sight For Sore Eyes’ is very emotive (an obvious point to make!) without being overly so. It reminds me a bit of when I first heard Russian band Ensslin’s Thumbsucker EP. It’s brilliantly simple from beginning to end, just really enjoyably emocore delivered in a way that comes naturally to European bands in general. That above point is demonstrated by ‘Every Dog Has It’s Day’ with it’s engrossing lead-guitar that stands tall at the forefront of the song, giving a listening experience that’s hard to find amongst many releases of a similar mould currently.

Penultimate song ‘Someone Who’s Working Really Hard On Being Someone’ starts with a sample that’s very apt for the current socio-political climate in which we live. It also mirrors the song as a whole, which seems to gain empowerment as it goes, alongside a great punk/screamo charm and Turnstile-esque positivity. I’m absolutely loving it! The pent up angst of closer ‘Sleepwalking In Potemkin Cities’ provides the closest glimpse of hardcore you’re gonna get on this release and the slightly harsher vocals are perfectly delivered without requiring the instrumentation to deviate from it’s blueprint sound.

The ears of Edie and also of those behind the other labels involved in this release can’t be faulted. If there was to be a shift in the current emo/screamo/post-hardcore community sound-wise, Cages would be leading it without a doubt. Hopefully this is the opening of a totally new rabbit hole.

You can stream and purchase Second Thoughts from the band on both physical, and digital formats below:-

Cages -

Physical copies can also be ordered from the labels below:-


Middle-Man Records -

Shove Records -

Through Love Records -

Long Legs Long Arms -

Middle-Man Records -

Shove Records -

Through Love Records -

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