The best thing about Madball is that you always know what you are going to get. Even if you’ve never heard of these guys before (who the fuck are you?), they offer you an album title that’s so straight-forward there can’t be no mistaking what these guys are about. Yes, hardcore lives and as soon as the intro entitled “Intro” kicks off, you know this is the new Madball album.
There are no surprises on here. They gallop, they groove, they break down and they repeat. All the while Freddy Cricien barks like there’s no tomorrow. Occasionally he’s helped out by Terror’s Scott Vogel, H2O’s Toby or Walls Of Jericho’s Candace but most of the time he will be counting on you to sing along at their shows.
Is it a bad thing that there are no surprises on here? No. If you were looking for a nice slab of NYHC, then “Hardcore Lives” will do just fine with the punky “Doc Marten Stomp”, the Spanish-sung “Mi Calabra” and the überheavy “DNA”.