Founded on beliefs that are in short supply within the current underground music scene, BANE has established themselves as one of the most influential and relevant bands in hardcore today. Since their inception, they've become one of the scene's hardest working bands touring the world over and releasing the full lengths, "It All Comes Down To This" and 2001's critically acclaimed "Give Blood," an album that breathed life into the then-stagnant hardcore scene. Returning with their first album in three years, Bane offer up "The Note" - an album that embodies the spirit, the community, and the love of traditional hardcore that Bane has become synonymous with. In stark contrast with many of its contemporaries "The Note" is not laden with trends but with powerful, energetic and passionate performances that serve as a wake up call for modern day hardcore.
Produced and recorded by Brian McTernan (Hot Water Music, Thrice, Cave In) "The Note" is a ten-track, super charged, much needed shot of hardcore. Fans of Bane will recognize the high-octane vocals of Aaron Bedard, which are complemented by a frenzy of raucous riffs furious enough to ignite circle pits. This is an album of anthems that'll inspire hardcore kids to rise above, to crawl over each other's heads, reaching, grabbing and clawing to share the mic with Bedard, to sing lyrics like "These are the only crowded rooms / I don't feel alone in" (from 'My Therapy') and to feel connected to the band and to this scene. About The Note, bassist Pete Chilton says, "We wanted to be true to what Bane has always been. We didn't want The Note to sound like anything in particular, other than Bane. We didn't sit down and think, 'Oh, we want this song to sound like Gorilla Biscuits or Youth Of Today, or where hardcore separated from punk.' We write songs that we like. It's what we think hardcore is."
The album's second track, "Pot Committed" is classic Bane and even has a piano interlude. While it doesn't brim with mosh parts, it's a clear-cut symbol of Bane doing what Bane wants to do. "Lyrically, it's about being a band for so long, asking for a non-violent scene to play our music in, because that is something we believe in, even if kids give us shit about it on the Internet or whatever, because we don't want people getting hurt when dancing at shows," Chilton reveals. "That has always been our view. We're too committed to that ethos that we can't back down now. That's what we're all about."
Chilton projects that "My Therapy" will be a fan favorite, especially live. The song is about how the hardcore scene keeps the people within it stay sane. Chilton says, "This is all we know. We don't know what else to do other than this. We've been doing it so long, so this scene is what's in us now. We're a part of it. It's where we relate, it's a community, and it's where people understand us."
While hardcore has never left the public eye or consciousness, the traditional hardcore genre has come and gone in waves and cycles. "Metal-sounding hardcore is huge and is on the verge of being mainstream, with bands like Bleeding Through and Killswitch Engage and Throwdown, who came from the hardcore scene, playing metal," Chilton says. "They are nearing the mainstream, where more fast paced, punk sounding hardcore was in submission, but it's growing back. We've been around so long, and we've seen the waves of styles. We never intended to be anything else. There are a lot of mid-tempo songs on the new record, and some faster ones. We're not trying to be anything."
After all these years, Bane still identify with the concept of a unified hardcore scene, and the power of three surging chords. "The Note" can help resurrect the golden days of sweaty, hardcore matinees, with lyrics that meant something, and shows that were the highlight of a working class kid's week. Bane have stayed true to a singular sound, ignoring trends, and continuing to make the same music they started out making over a decade ago. But consistency did not give way to same-ness or predictability. In a genre that's full of soundalikes and copycats, Bane are the standouts, playing raw, surging hardcore not unlike forefathers Judge and Burn. The proverbial 'they' say that you have to evolve in order to prosper, and Bane evolves and prospers without ever changing their focus or aesthetic goal. All you need is one listen to "The Note" for proof of that.