Released: 2008, Century Media Records
Reviewer: Lord of the Wasteland
Hmmm…a melodic hardcore band from Orange County, California. How original! For what it’s worth, Stick To Your Guns’ debut, COMES FROM THE HEART, is a no frills, get-what-you-pay-for album that runs its course in a tight 27 minutes. People know what to expect here and they get it: tough-guy hardcore verses with some cleanly-sung choruses over top of battering ram drums and twin guitars duking it out. In other words, Throwdown/Hatebreed mixed with a touch of Bury Your Dead and you’ve got yourself Stick To Your Guns.
Hardcore grooves and the corresponding attitude/lyrical posturing is everywhere here. Jesse Barnett’s vocal arsenal seems to shift easily from an acidic bark to a nice clean singing voice on songs like “Impact” and “Driving Force” that will remind many of a heavier version of Atreyu. “Accessory Children” rips along with sharp, rapid-fire drumming from Casey Lagos that is synchronized perfectly with the guitar tandem of Alex Barnett and Ryan Nelson. “Tonight’s Entertainment” comes off as a bit of a D-grade Unearth rip-off but the pinch harmonics—it really is Barnett and Nelson that make this record remotely interesting—save things from going too far down the proverbial toilet.
COMES FROM THE HEART will be a tough sell outside of a small, core audience. Stick To Your Guns is the type of band that earns a few fans on Warped Tour but never evolves beyond opening act status because there is little appeal to their music. Devoid of any personality, charisma or originality, look for COMES FROM THE HEART to be in the bargain bin soon enough and Stick To Your Guns to split up due to “creative differences” after one more album.
KILLER KUTS: “Impact,” “Accessory Children,” “Tonight’s Entertainment”