“Gimme a muthafuckin’ Iced T! No ice!” North New Jersey hardcore group 96’s new album, “Caught in The Grips,” just dropped on Hotfoot Records, and if you’ve ever been able to relate with the opening sentence and like your music testy, this one is for you.
96 plays heavy handed hardcore punk, filled with breakdown anthems like the album opener, “Had Enough,” thrashy blasts reminiscent of old-school style on “Walk About” and “Iced T,” and lots of groove-oriented, straight up crunch to keep the pit moving. All the tracks are very solid and well put together, straight to the point and not leaving too much room to question to inspiration/motivation behind the songs.
The lead screamer’s gruff, occasionally snotty sounding delivery is clearly pissed off, but offered in a decipherable way to make for pile-on sing-a-longs and speaker jumping. A dual guitar attack fuels the fire, and the frantic rhythm sections provides enough burst to whip anyone into a frenzy. I mean hey… Dirty Jersey has always spawned some brutal acts, and 96 is no exception to the rule here… This one will leave the floor bloodied. Good sign, Hotfoot!
It’s always cool when you can turn off whatever thoughts or preconceptions you may have of an act and just rage out to it. 96 accomplished this well with “Caught In The Grips.” For the price of 2 beers, you can go grab a copy and judge for yourself, so get to it.