Choke Up

This Boston quartet has been cracking open their former blasts of chaotic, emotional hardcore and spilling out gigantic stadium-sized songs. “Black Coffee, Bad Habits” sounds like a DIY basement band having a moment of realization on record – they are suddenly ready for the spotlight. Swinging-for-the-fences with big production, strings and lush layered vocals, Choke Up has flushed out their sound into an album of fully realized emotive punk anthems. A looking glass into the lives of four extremely earnest human beings, it’s difficult to not empathize with the joy, melancholy, and frustration let loose in these 14 tracks. Guitars are played with a new found confidence, but the emphatic, wavering vocals betray the band for what they are – a group of friends taking a shot in the dark. Without fancy haircuts or plastic commercial aspirations, we are left with incredibly real, poetic lyrics about life, innocence, nature, and the fragility of relationships – written by four old friends fueled by the smell of stale sweat, the taste of cheap beer, and a desperate urge to push forward.
– Jonah Livingston / Ramming Speed