CD Review: Under Fire – “Blackout”

New England pop-punkers Under Fire come out firing on all cylinders on their latest EP Blackout, with openers “Blackout” and “Set Adrift” overflowing with exactly what you want your pop-punk records to be teeming with – unbridled energy, saccharine hooks, powerful riffs and passionate vocals, which should come as no surprise once you find that Blackout was produced by Four Year Strong frontman Alan Day. Day’s Four Year Strong influence continues through “Lone Wolf,” though the best of Blackout is reserved for the final two tracks, “Renegade” and “Paralyzed.” The former ebbs and flows through bouncy melodies and weighty guitars, while the latter is the album’s standout track, a mixture of the sheer passion of Rise Against and the rawness of early Story of the Year. On “Paralyzed,” Josh Carley delivers the albums best all-around vocals via one impassioned refrain after another, making for enough of a memorable moment to send Blackout listeners out on a pretty damn high note.

Grade: B

Go Download: “Paralyzed”