Internet meet Shark Weak from High River, Alberta. They’re a three-piece hardcore band that apparently, REALLY FUCKING LIKES SHARKS. They apparently also just released an EP called Free Meal and I get to review it, because my fucking luck.
You know that song “Terror Shark” by Municipal Waste? Well now you do because we link the fuck out of our shit, and now that you know, picture a four-song EP that took me longer to take a shit than listen to that essentially embodies “Terror Shark” in pre-prod form and you’ve got Free Meal. If you’re the kind of person to read the first hateful thing out of a review and bounce, then you’re going to miss the highlight and I won’t be the asshole anymore, you will.
This is a fun little piece, the movie clips heading both “Jersey Maneater” and “Laser Sharks” are nostalgic as fuck. These dudes very obviously are having the time of their lives banging this shit out and I can only commend them on what sounds like a sick High River Party. The only place they lose points with me is in terms of originality and recording value. Unfortunately, this act does sound like a lot of other fun-loving crossover hardcore bands in terms of composition because it’s such a tight box to slide into. “Trapped in a Cage” does offer a little diversity in terms of ballad-like moments, but not enough to really showcase the potential of the band’s repertoire. That said, still fun as fuck.
The elephant in the room with a first effort is ALWAYS going to be recording value. You’re just starting out, you don’t want to invest in a crazy product because punk fucking rock man, but at the end of the day, you want people to hear your shit. In the case of Free Meal, a lot of it is passable for a first effort, but not enough to score top marks. The mixing is there, the mastering is kind of not, the levelling is there, the tone work is kind of not. If and when these things see a little tweaking and investment, you’re going to have a really fucking fun time listening to this act. That’s also not to mention that I can only imagine the fun time these dudes have on stage.
All this rambling and I’m down to one last point, if you enjoy your music, then fuck what everybody else thinks, but if you care what people think, then put the money and effort in to spank out a polished product. Put these guys on a Municipal Waste or even a Comeback Kid bill and you’re looking at a banger evening.
Written by Jason Greenberg
*edited by Mike Milito