Terror – “The Most High” from Live By The Code
With the sheer amount of music videos around, we’ve found it’s difficult to give them all coverage – as well as finding the words to adequately describe them without repeating ourselves – so in an effort to crank out more interesting content, we’re banding together all of our opinions in a handy format to give you the lowdown. We’ll then be asking you to throw in your opinion in the handy poll at the bottom.
First to the plate is the new video for “The Most High” by Los Angeles hardcore punk veterans Terror. They’re on their fourth studio album now, called Live By The Code, which is due out April 9th on Victory Records. Take a gander at the video and we’ll see you after!
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I’ve always found this brand of tough guy hardcore to be singularly boring. It’s not that there’s anything wrong with it – in fact, I think this is a pretty solid example of the style – it just fails to connect with me. I appreciate the passion, but I can’t get excited about hardcore scene nostalgia lyrics set to some slow chords. The video is pretty inoffensive. I always like to see some tattoo action in a music video and I dig on behind-the-scenes footage, but I can only see so many black-hoodied thirty-somethings before I start to nod off. Maybe music videos for songs about coming up in the old days of hardcore just don’t do it for me, because they aren’t for me. I don’t identify with the sentiment and I don’t love the music, so I’m just shit out of luck on this one.
I find this brand of hardcore to be a bit of a guilty pleasure – it’s like the aural equivalent of an action movie. It does work well for background music for video games, but the irony of the video is that it reminds you that, rather than sat on the sofa with a laptop, the best place to hear it is dodging limbs in a small and sweaty club. There’s no denying that this is a quality example of the genre, but I do find that hardcore has somewhat painted itself into a corner. Most of the the bands they reference in the video have been doing their thing for the best part of 20 years, and this song could have come from literally any point in that period. Despite the key themes of breaking free and living one’s life however you please, it does have some of the most absurdly narrow and prescriptive boundaries of any genre. It’s a strong track by any measure, and I’m sure hardcore fans will love it. Just don’t expect any big surprises.
Though I love a lot of hardcore, this song was really kind of tedious. There was no real conviction to it, the vocals lacked any sort of punch and musically it just seemed oddly shallow (though I must say I don’t know the band so maybe just don’t get their style).
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I’ve not listened to Terror before. I started off thinking it wasn’t particularly clever, but ultimately the simplicity of the song is also its biggest strength. The feeling of belonging certainly isn’t exclusive to the hardcore scene, and it evokes that well. Despite the band’s obvious age, their music has obviously had a positive impact on their lives, and that’s pretty cool. I can’t decide if the obvious referencing of genre stalwarts in the visuals is corny or just nice, but it’s certainly not offensive. Visually, the black and white is pretty typical for hardcore. The slow-mo is nothing revolutionary. Ultimately I’m not sure if it’d convince me to listen to the album, as the song is of that old hardcore style that I find kind of boring, but it’s not without its charm.
I never really found myself listening to Terror all that much. And I grew up with hardcore music and that was the scene I was a part of as a teenager, yet the tough guy style was never my thing. Madball was about the extent of what I listened to that would fall into that category. Terror are great for what they play, and I can see the appeal of them in the hardcore scene.
This video is the antithesis of entertainment. It lacks content, direction, motivation. It really just seems to be put together for the sake of being put together. There was once a time when music video served mysticism to its viewer. I’m not mystified in the slightest bit. Do I like Terror? I’m not sure yet. But I do know that I’ll never need to watch a video to be turned on to the music.
Chord, chord, chord-chord, chord, the slow clean black and white video does not really match the context of the song/band. While I appreciate some aspects of Hardcore, it has never been my thing, the constant pandering about “truth” “strength” “determination” gets a little stale after a while. Like I said I am not bashing the scene, but I find the chug-chug chording (of this song) to be a bit boring.[/column] [/columns]