As one of the fastest rising bands in the California hardcore scene for the past 3 years—due to the release of their 2020 debut-full length, California Cursed, and plenty of head-turning, energetic live sets—there are very few bands with a sophomore album as hotly anticipated as Drain. The group’s blend of rage-fueled-punk-rock-attitude and heavy hardcore has pulled in listeners from all extreme music circles and has seen them annihilate festivals as varied as Furnace Fest, Psycho Las Vegas and FYA Fest, just to name a few. With high expectations looming, I’m happy to report that Living Proof stays the course, with all the sonic elements that made their initial releases hit hard turned up to 11. Far from a change in direction of sound, Drain have instead doubled down on their strengths and delivered another set of catchy energetic hardcore songs that are sure to have venues across the world popping off for months and years to come.
Drain sit at an interesting midpoint in the hardcore scene; while they’re obviously dedicated to their craft and the genre, they also don’t take themselves super seriously and are better for it. While pulling no punches and hitting hard both musically and in lyrical content, there is certainly a very punk rock aesthetic permeating the band’s records and live shows, and it’s clear that they’re here for a good time with crazy live sets above all else. With Living Proof, they get closer than ever to bringing the intensity of their live show to the recorded format. Produced by Taylor Young (Deadbody, God’s Hate, Twitching Tongues) and mixed by Jon Markson, the songs on Living Proof feel at times like the band is playing right in front of you, with a consistently engaging energy felt throughout it’s duration.
Aside from a midpoint interlude that features a verse from G59 emcee Shakewell rapping over a beat that then transitions into a breakdown and a surprising curveball thrown in near the end of the record by way covering The Descendent’s “Good Good Things”, the rest of Living Proof is a full-on rager from beginning to end; all go, no slow. These are some of the catchiest and most infectious hardcore songs I’ve heard this year, with a strong emphasis on pure “fuck you” attitude and huge, crushing metal-leaning breakdowns thrown in at just the right moments for good measure. It’s far from anything new for the genre, but that’s pretty clearly a non-issue when the band’s firing on all cylinders on a songwriting and passion level. If you’re looking for something you’ve never heard before in hardcore music, you’ll want to look elsewhere, but those with an appreciation for the genre’s more straightforward aspects will surely find a lot to dig into here.
The only aspect of fault I can really find in Living Proof is that while I do enjoy the album as a whole, I did find that the initial 3 singles that were released (“FTS (KYS)”, “Watch You Burn” and “Evil Finds Light”) are by far the strongest songs on the record. While there are definitely other songs that will grow on you with each subsequent listen, I did find it somewhat disappointing that the songs that stuck out to me the most had already been out for quite some time. That being said, there are plenty of moments on Living Proof that will come across much stronger in a live setting, and I’d imagine that’s quite a bit of the point here.
Bottom Line: Living Proof is another stellar collection of hardcore songs from a band that seemingly has an endless well of energy to tap into. It’s not a perfect record and some songs certainly stand out much more than others, but as a whole, it’s an extremely solid record that vaults straight over the dreaded sophomore slump that can sink a band’s momentum.
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^ Well yeah. Nobody in the band is black.
"Man, I can't believe the first 3 comments on this review are from absolute loser chuds who would literally hide in a trash can if anyone they talked shit to approached them in real life" -Nobody who reads Lambgoat on a regular basis.
If it's not apathetic or mean, it's not a Lambgoat comment. If anyone actually means what they're saying, good. That means I won't see you at the show for whatever band.
That music video is so bad, I was embarrassed for the band while watching it.
" If it's not apathetic or mean, it's not a Lambgoat comment. If anyone actually means what they're saying, good. That means I won't see you at the show for whatever band." Hmm, fair point.
most overrated band in hardcore right now. this shit sucks.
"most overrated band in hardcore right now. this shit sucks." STFU and die you're probably in your 30's still trying to play deathcore
"anonymous 1 day ago STFU and die you're probably in your 30's still trying to play deathcore" Found the singer
10 out of 10 I won't listen. Seriously what would be the point of listening to this at all. Even if this is your thing, will you still listen to it next year? What about 5 years? You could be listening to Zulu instead so why bother listening to this. If you asked this band" Hey Drain ( what kind of drain they are has still yet to be seen) would you agree that if people should listen to this or Zulu?", what do you think the answer would be? Either way, I think unanimously we all need to ponder that before ever checking out new music. Should you listen to this or Zulu? When I'm doing- just listen to Zulu. The world won't be happy until Metallica is opening up for a Zulu show.
Not Zulu status.