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A Review of Ceremony's "Violence, Violence"
I saw Ceremony live in Richmond, VA back in 2006. It was one of the most heartfelt punk shows that I have ever experienced. The minute they got on stage, the crowd went wild. Raw, Angry, Aggressive dancing lit up the room and if you didn’t want to get punched in the face, well, you probably should have just left and went down the street to a bakery to eat a cupcake, alone without any of your violent friends.
Fast forward to 2016 and this album, Violence, Violence, still hasn’t left my music rotation. I still play it loud in my car singing along and screaming in the mirror lyrics from tracks like “Walking Home.” This album is hate, violence, and truth all in one. It is your raw beating heart ripped out of your chest and being tossed around in a violent mosh pit of dancing beasts. Each song is pretty short, maybe less than 2 minutes, but by the time you get to the end of every song, you are wishing there was more of those fast strumming guitar riffs and violent slams on the bass drum. You will want to walk into the bathroom or drive around in your car screaming, "Fuck!"
This album starts out with the short haunting intro called “Ghosts” that leaves the listeners with the slow, dark, emotions of the raw guitar picking. It then continues with tracks, “Living Hell” & “My Hands are Made of Spite,” which gives your entire soul a serious raw beat down with 1-2 drumming sequence and channeled anger into thrashier guitar riffs. Ross Farrar, the vocalist, also does not give you a break by screaming with lyrics with lines like “What good is your heart if it doesn’t break” or “Pack your fist full of hate take a swing at the world.” The vocals send you down a humbling path and just smash your ego into pieces with short raw & blunt one liners of wisdom. His style of speedy screaming, chanting, and aggressive shouts will leave you wanting to sing and chant along with him with your middle fingers high in the air.
The lyrics and melodies are filled with the frustrations of society, themselves, personal demons, and other worldly topics, but it channels a slower burning rage for their cover of “Pressure’s On” by the classic DC Hardcore Band, Red C. Giving the classic more of a chanting sing-along feel. I feel like this cover was a great addition to the album because it shows that these feelings have been around for centuries about the expectations of society and it transitions nicely into my favorite track on the whole album, “Walking Home.” The lyrics start out with “I’m here to wrap my hands around societies’ neck. Slowly slip away from a lifeless grip.” And because they are loud and clear with a little less speed,so that we can hear the clarity in the frustrations that the album’s theme rages through. It’s as if they have channeled their frustrations into the rebellious and shocking voice that we all have hidden inside us somewhere.
Overall, this album will probably never leave my collection. I can feel my wild heart trying to rip through my rib cage with every crushing riff. I can feel the veins in my arms fill with passion and aggression. And if you are like me, a rebellious fairy punk that just wants her message to be heard, you will find yourself nodding to these aggressive truths. My suggestion is to not listen to this song around someone you don’t really like though, because as the lyrics say “Burn Bridges, Sink Ships to the bitter End.”
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