Release Of The Week: THE FEVER 333’s Made An America
In some ways, the breakup of letlive. was exactly as you’d want it to be. There was no long drawn-out goodbye tour to wring the last bits of cash from the name. No grand farewell. Just the announcement on April 28 last year that one of the most intense, exciting and principled hardcore bands of recent times had come to an end because of the “divergent views” within their ranks, making it impossible for them to continue. And so, with a simple Facebook announcement signalling the end, that was that.
Except it wasn’t. You can’t just turn off something that powerful. And when the band’s singer, leader and chief dynamo Jason Aalon Butler broke his silence and launched new band The Fever 333 last July with a surprise show in the car park of a doughnut shop, followed shortly after by his new band’s first recorded music, the police-baiting rap-rock anthem We’re Coming In, it was like seeing a man plugged back into his life force.
THE FEVER 333, they announced, aren’t just a band. Like letlive., they’re a collective based around an idea, a principle. In this case, community, charity and change. Since then, the band have posted more footage of political rallies and support for good causes on Facebook than they have tour dates and new music. But that’s half the point, and if you’re basing your band around such things, you have to go in with both feet.
Which is also what THE FEVER 333 have done musically, now that they’ve finally released this debut EP (by surprise, natch). Like letlive., this is music born from the streets, from fighting, from standing up to be who you are. But there’s something more direct here than Jason’s previous band, with a Rage Against The Machine-ish stomp throughout.
And it’s electric. Whether railing against authority on Hunting Season with its ‘You can’t keep us under your thumb’ diatribe, or making you wonder if Jason’s dealing with ghosts of his past when he sings, ’Sell me down the shallow river, could I hate you more?’ on Soul’d Me Out, this sounds like a car that’s spent the past 11 months revving at the start line suddenly screaming forwards. The music of former The Chariot guitarist Stephen Harrison and Night Verses drummer Aric Improta is similarly explosive, as insurgent as it is danceable, mixing metal, hardcore, funk bits and soul to staggering effect.
Never mind what happened with letlive., for that is in the past. To Jason and his bandmates, right now is what’s important. And for THE FEVER333, it’s truly explosive.
Words: Nick Ruskell
THE FEVER 333’s Made An America is out now on Roadrunner Records. Have a listen below.
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