Hot Water Music's "Caution" scores yet another great review

Here is what had to say about the new record.

Hot Water Music - "Caution" - Rating:8

Gainesville, Florida's Hot Water Music resist easy categorization: They're most often dubbed "emo," but don't in any way resemble the high-pitched pop or melodic metal that typifies the genre. They're not exactly punk either, as their complex, articulate stylings are a good deal more demanding and rewarding than your standard three-chord fare. But they're too meaty to be indie rock, and while the term "post-punk" sounds real nice, it doesn't exactly go too far in terms of describing a sound or a scene. Instead, HWM's subtly tuneful, blisteringly fast, heavily muscled guitar rock stands on its own as one of the most engaging sounds currently being produced. Caution is the band's seventh full-length, and their finest, most nuanced work by a good bit. From George Rebelos' crushing drumming to Jason Black's kinetic basslines to the frenzied double guitar/vocal onslaught of Chuck Ragan and Chris Wollard, the whole band is tighter than the stitching on a baseball, and they've upped the ante in almost every department from earlier recordings. Caution is more intricate, more aware and considerably catchier than the band's past work - no small feat, when you consider that their last, 2001's A Flight and a Crash, found the band at a previous career-best, firing on all cylinders and blowing the doors off pretty much everything else on the road. Nearly every track here has a fist-pumping, full-throttle singalong chorus, but never at the expense of great musicianship or challenging songwriting. Ultimately and most impressively, Caution is an album that works on all levels; there is little here that is not immediately endearing, but give it some time, and you'll really fall head over heels.

The Equation: Fugazi ÷ Alkaline Trio +

Michael Nelson

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