Since forming in 2002, Philadelphia’s Paint It Black have rewritten the rules of hardcore punk with each new release. Across three full-length albums and three seven-inch EPs, the four-piece of vocalist Dan Yemin, bassist Andy Nelson, guitarist Josh Agran, and drummer Jared Shavelson have been crafting concise, incisive statements that meld hardcore’s fury with a nuanced lyrical perspective. On Famine, the band’s upcoming 12-inch on Revelation Records, Paint It Black shows all sides of itself, returning as inspired—and inspiring—as they were a decade ago.
Famine is the product of years of plotting, planning, and prepping, with the goal of making the most impactful statement possible. In many ways, Famine is a record about the blurring between history and mythology, especially as it pertains to the current moment in America. On Famine, Yemin explores the stories we grew up being told—the truths, the lies, and everything in between. Yemin’s vocals, as charged as ever, sound like a decade’s worth of frustration has finally boiled over, allowing him to dissect the rose-colored tellings of American history with surgical precision. Similar to this exploratory lyrical approach, the music on Famine creates richer textures out of pieces rarely found on hardcore punk albums, as distinct struts shift between pummeling pieces and melodic touches in ways that continually take the listener by surprise.
Throughout the eight songs that make up Famine, Paint It Black proves that the most potent hardcore punk releases are ones that come from a space of vulnerability, honesty, and authenticity. It’s what makes each moment on Famine feel vibrant and vital, just like Paint It Black has always done.