Review: Sick Of It All

Sick Of It All
“Live in a Dive”
(Fat Wreck Chords)

Live Sick Of It All recorded at Bottom of the Hill in San Francisco.  This is the third installment of the “Live in a Dive” series from Fat Wreck.  The other two being from No Use For A Name and Bracket.  What’s neato, is there is a comic book that accompanies these releases.  Hard to find the tie in with the band on this one, but it’s cool none the less.  And music?  24 Live Sick of it All songs.  It’s raw enough to capture the direct intensity of a band like SOIA, but quality enough to hear a reasonably balanced representation of a live sound.  Which, for the uninitiated, is straight ahead hardcore with occasional bro hymn singalongs.  There are two types of ‘whoa-oahhs’ in this world.  The kind that Jimmy Eat World do on “Sweetness” (ruining a great crash of guitar and basically saying ‘I have nothing to say here so I’ll make some noise’), and then there’s the kind that bands like Sick of it All and Pennywise use to rally the crowd into singing with them.  There’s an inclusion of belief among the Sick of it All fans and you can feel that on this release, even if the music is pretty singular in its approach.  Solid, but singular.  Only the true fan would be able to pick out song from song (this is a live slosh of hardcore no matter how pristinely it’s recorded) and vocals sound… live.  Again, if you don’t know the songs in the original versions… you’ll feel the vibe but you’ll miss on the craft of some good hardcore as 24 songs seem to slip by with a very similar feel.  If you are fan, this is worthy live stuff, especially for the sheer number of tracks.  And see if you can get yours with a comic.