Louisville's Coliseum have come a long, long way since 2005's No Salvation album, which saw them partnering with powerhouse Metal label Relapse Records. It was a good match at the time as Coliseum was ripping through some seriously violent, crust-inspired, punk rock. But time and life have ways of modifying a band's sound and in the eight years since that album Coliseum have progressed. To progress is one thing. To progress and still maintain the high quality of the end product is a whole different ballgame.
Louisville, KY has severely deep and vibrant roots in the punk and hardcore scenes. The sheer number of bands this mid-sized city on the Ohio River has churned out is stunning when taken into perspective. Maybe it's because the culture and history of the city is so cross-sectional (being referred to as both the "Northern-Most Southern City" and the "Southern-Most Northern City") bands that rumble out of Louisville always seem to have this uniqueness about them that's hard to pin down. Over the last decade plus of punk rock dominance Coliseum have done their part to add new chapters to the city's musical legacy. Their new album Sister Faith is just another prime example of this band creating something that's rather incomparable.
Do they still rip throats out the way they did in their earliest days? No, but they don't have to in order to make their presence felt. The music on Sister Faith is discordant and powerful enough that they don't need to play at maximum speed or even volume to have the circle-pit inducing effect on people. Tracks like "Disappear From Sight" and "Fuzzbang" still pack a massive punch while highly infectious numbers like "Doing Time" and "Black Magic Punks" invoke the spirits of the earliest days of the post punk and hardcore movements. When thrown into the proverbial stew together what Coliseum have created could possibly be described as this sort of amalgamation of Quicksand, Fugazi and a dirtier, nastier version of Avail, yet something completely all their own at the same time. It is simply put, one of the best punk rock records you're going to hear this year.
Luckily for you, the band has three songs from the new album up on their Bandcamp page for your listening pleasure.
*Coliseum plays at Cafe Nine in New Haven on Sunday, May 19.