(9/10) There aren’t that many hardcore bands that are part of Nuclear Blast’s portfolio and one of them is New York veterans Madball. The band began in the late 80’s as a side project of the legendary Agnostic Front. Madball grew slowly but steady. The guys played for many years some smaller regional venues, a first EP was released in 1989 (‘Ball of Destruction’) and step by step Madball could catch-up with bands like Biohazard, Cro-Mags and other NYC hardcore pioneers.
Up to date Madball has released eight longplayers, with number nine being ready to go. ‘For the Cause’ is the title of a new hardcore masterpiece, comprising of thirteen songs. Listening to the album several times gave me the impression that these crazy times we’re living in have at least one thing that’s positive. It seems like lukewarmness gets pushed aside and people start to care again and have a standpoint. This unleashes an energy that manifests itself in records like ‘For the Cause’.
Madball’s new strike is for sure one of the best ones the band launched up to date. It’s packed with excellent hardcore anthems, including great riffpower, excellent shouts and an infectious groove. It’s hard to illuminate just a few songs since they’re all good. However, tunes that made an impression on me are tracks like ‘Evil Ways’. This uptempo hardcore smasher is outstanding and it’s the contribution of no less than Ice-T that makes things even better. Another highlight is the title track with it’s reggae-ish ending, which distracts and still fits in the context of the tune. What else? Oh yeah, ‘The Fog’, with Rancid’s Tim Armstrong, adds some punk to the mix and also the single release ‘Rev Up’ is an excellent hardcore hymn you should listen to.
Next to the songs, ‘For the Cause’ is also convincing by its dynamic and powerful sound. The album was co-produced by the already mentioned Tim Armstrong and it was no less than Tue Madsen who mixed and mastered the new longplayer.
‘For the Cause’ is a well-done continuation of one of the best hardcore bands these days. Madball’s new strike combines the spirit of hardcore, the power of metal and the music punch right into the face. This album comes without any frills or fillers. It’s pure hardcore energy that hits you … and I don’t think anybody expected anything else.
- Smile Now Pay Later
- Rey Up
- Freight Train
- Old Fashioned
- Evil Wars (feat. Ice-T.)
- Lone Wolf
- Damaged Goods
- The Fog (feat. Tim Armstrong)
- Est u vida
- For You
- For the Cause
- Confessions (Bonus)
Label: Nuclear Blast Records
Release Date EU: June 15th, 2018