Beat-down hardcore often incorporates the worst sides of hardcore; derivative riffs, empty lyrics, and alpha-male posturing. So it’s genuinely great to come across a band who buck the trend, writing beat-down hardcore that gets pretty much everything right. Rather than sounding like the soundtrack for gym-bros to pound on each other, SOS by Backswing instead comes across as a real burst of energy and righteous rage, muscular without being bone-headed, and with heart-felt lyrics that actually have something to say. All of which makes it such a shame that the band have recently split, as this group held real promise.
Though there are still some cliches of beat-down hardcore present on SOS – with more than a few lyrics about being real and earning your place – but there’s also songs which address the importance of fighting prejudice; of dealing with abusive relationships; and treating women the hardcore scene as a novelty. Marissa’s vocals put across a real sense of urgency and honesty, all backed up by meaty, heavy riffs, with plenty of movements designed for mosh pit carnage.