Review: “Cause of Pain” by On Sight

Forming in 2016, January 2017 gave light to single “Public Enemy” as a teaser for their self titled debut EP the following May and with that New Jersey Hardcore wrecking ball On Sight had already established a platform for themselves. 2018’s two track affair “Fading Out” had fans clamoring for more and when the entered Landmine Studios with Len Carmichael everyone knew what time it was. JT Giordano (Vocals), Darren Carreon (Drums), Dante Santiago (Guitar/Backing Vocals), Edgar Lucero (Bass), and Douglas Maxwell (Guitar) took their time to get it right over a period of four months to create 16 minutes entitled “Cause of Pain” before it was Mastered by Alan Douches of West Westside Music. The band grew up going to shows from seminal bands like E-Town Concrete, The Banner and King Nine, with all three being influences before sharing stages with a diverse array of acts ranging from Death Threat and Extinction AD to Judiciary and Xibalba.

As a record “Cause of Pain” deals with a trio of primary themes in those of Pain, Fear and Heartbreak. Each one you could consider experiences that we all go through from day to day as part of our lives and the choices we make in how we deal with each one is the subject matter of On Sight’s writing. Deep? Opener “Without You” is soaked in feedback and gritty Hardcore riffs that have that “from the streets” air about them and it deals lyrically with the pain of losing a loved one to drugs. It does so with a Hardcore gallop that as some crossover thrash moments and a classic whammy bar drop that you might expect from Power Trip. Single “Expired” is an absolute ripper of barked vocals from Giordano, who raises a fist of defiance with lines like “I’m sick and tired of feeling sick and tired” with that sense of positivity that says “this isn’t happening“. It’s a pivotal moment that we can all relate to and they deliver the track in style. “Best Bet” as that “Kick It” moment from “Fight For Your Right (To Party)” from Beastie Boys but instead races off in another direction. A punchy track with some choice tempo shifts it’s soon left in the dust by “Out of Time” which has a surprise face melter of a solo before some brilliantly worked staccato breakdown grooves and big drum fills from Carreon. “Fire And Ice” sticks to the Crossover Thrash vibe with some sung backing vocals and a huge pick slide while not breaking the atmospheric before the title track, which deals with abuses of power from law enforcement punches back. Classic Thrash lyrical themes are given a Hardcore makeover with screamed backing vocals and some pummeling grooves that bring the house down. Taking the fight to fighting addiction with “Dead Ends” which wraps the concept back around to the opening track while also bringing some Metallica influence to the lyrics “If I die before I wake, I pray the lord my soul to take” from “Enter Sandman” making a surprise appearance in the first half. The false end then allows On Sight to slow it down for some killer groove riffs as they have very much taken the power back from the pain of everyday life [8/10]

Track listing

  1. Without You
  2. Expired
  3. Best Bet
  4. Out of Time
  5. Fire and Ice
  6. Cause of Pain
  7. Dead Ends

Cause of Pain” by On Sight is out 24th April via Unbeaten Records with pre-orders available over at bandcamp

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