Unshackled – The Overcoming Years

unshackled-the-overcoming-years

One simple word, “wow”, describes this July 27, 2011 release from Thumper Punk Records and Caustic Fallout. Punk music covers a huge range of styles, from bright and light pop punk to heavy, guttural, hardcore punk. Unshackled keeps a bit to the right of centre in the punk spectrum. This El Paso, Texas band brings back the no-holds-barred street punk sound that was so prevalent years ago. Raw, rough, and dirty both vocally and musically, this 17 track CD returns punk to it’s historical roots.

Unshackled is comprised of Joe Straightedge (vocals), Connor Himself (Guitar-1 & Lead/Backing Shrieks & Screams), Tick St. Grave (Guitar-A & Lead/Backing Cries & Calls), Issac Espinoza (Bass & Backing Growls & Grumbles), and Eddie Trejo (Pops, Booms, Bangs & Crashes).

Contrary to the norm, Unshackled pulls no punches in respect to their faith. Christ takes front and centre in the lyrics of The Overcoming Years. Rebellion, in both positive and negative fashion, has been the basis of punk music since day one. The plus or minus to that rebellion has been determined by the musicians lyrics.

“Jesus is Punk Rock”, while a simple track lyrically, tells a profound truth.  Christ was a rebel to the religious establishment:

Deep within the bowels,
of Punk Rock’s very soul,
beats the heart of rebellion
and raw Rock n’ Roll.
A man came to Earth,
and rebelled against His flesh.
He paid the price for Freedom,
n’ you already know the rest.
Je-sus-is-Punk Rock
He died for you!
Christian, Atheist, Jew!
He didn’t care about Religion,
All he did was just love you.
He wants us to unite.
To teach us wrong from right.
To make a stand against oppression
Shouting “PUNX UNITE!”
Je-sus-is-Punk Rock
Je-sus-is-Punk Rock

“Kingdom Times” describes the multiple masks Christians wear, but Christ knows the believers heart.

The Sacrifice was made
paid full in blood so we’d be saved.
God’s Son: the only one
And you proceeded with your fun.
you always talk it
but your words were meant to please a crowd.
you never walk it
you just idly spit room-temp aloud!
(Chorus)
What ever happened to our brotherhood,
and where have all the true saints gone?
In Kingdom Times!
And now the time has come
no place to hide, nowhere to run.
He sees you know the score
so which side are you fighting for?
If you ain’t man enough
to stand up and fight hard for truth.
maybe it’s time for you
to stand aside, let Fire through!
(Chorus)
What ever happened to our brotherhood,
and where have all the true saints gone?
In Kingdom Times!

The Overcoming Years Track List

  1. Intro
  2. You Forgot Something
  3. To Those Who Know Better (Grow a Pair)
  4. Strength
  5. Grave Saint Life
  6. Land of the Dead
  7. Take Everything
  8. Jesus is Punk Rock
  9. Beware My Pleasure
  10. Born To Lose
  11. Don’t Call Me Ugly
  12. Ego
  13. Human Decay
  14. The Cards You’re Dealt
  15. Hate Moshing
  16. Kingdom Times
  17. Overcome

Punk fans are going to love this solid album. After multiple listenings, The Overcoming Years has continued to surprise me. The odd track may slip into a “B-side” caliber, but overall this is a great CD from newcomer band, Unshackled.

Buy The Unshackled – The Overcoming Years here

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