When hardcore bands go metal one of two things happens:
One, they fail miserably and end up sounding like a mish-mash of Disturbed-style pomp metal and painfully generic, chest-thumping hardcore; or
Two, they successfully fuse two brutally effective strains of alternative music into a potent, soul-affirming product. See: Converge, Botch, Since By Man, Paint The Town Red.
On paper, PTTR are nothing, just another European hardcore crew with a couple of major tour support feathers in their collective cap (The Hope Conspiracy, Avail and the aforementioned Converge have all enjoyed their on-the-road company). They've issues of the political and social variety, like many other bands of their ilk. Nothing special there. Indeed, with lyrics like "Fuck your country... put the gun in your country's leader's face..." ('Bored In The USA') and "Feed the rich to get richer while the poor get treated like trash..." (the spectacularly titled 'We Are Fuck You'), it'd be easy to overlook them completely, expecting another album full of repetitive, anger-fuelled anthems for knuckle-dragging meatheads. But there's some major talent at work here - PTTR's line up includes the guitarist from emo-rockers Flyswatter, and the founding duo of Christoph Zehetleitner and Marco Walzel have promoted hardcore and punk acts on the continent for many a year. These guys aren't in this for a quick, semi-socially conscious buck. They're not doing it for the kids. They're doing it because this is what they are. This is their life, on a disc. And it's ace.
Well, most of the time it is, but the occasional lapse into fairly standard old-school hardcore detracts little from a record bursting with focused energy. On their fusion of metal and hardcore, the album's title track could have just as easily have been penned by Will Haven, or even the Deftones. That they can mix it up so well ensures that 'Home Is Where The Hate Is' will have a longer shelf life than many a similar release. So it's nothing new, strictly creatively speaking, but when metallic hardcore is done as well as it on some of these tracks, you'll forgive any dalliances with the derivative for the sheer force of this 30-minute-long rollercoaster ride of a record. Brutal and beautiful in almost equal measures, 'Home Is Where The Hate Is' will be ranked as one of the top releases of its kind come the close of 2004, providing the all-too familiar lyrical themes can be given a critical backseat.
8Mike Diver's Score