JR Ewing’s 2002 album Ride Paranoia was hailed by the Norwegian press as the spearhead of current hardcore. Together with such bands as Amulet and Team Spirit, JR Ewing are credited for the recent bloom on the hardcore scene which has seen a wider audience (and major label focus) drawn to a scene that has up until now been more or less hidden in the underground. Ride Paranoia was awarded rave reviews, a Norwegian Grammy nomination and a coveted Alarm-prize award in the rock category.
Foreign media is now picking up interest in the Norwegian hardcore scene, and JR Ewing’s Ride Paranoia is given due acclaim in NME and Kerrang’s latest issues.
Says NME’s Pat Long on the energetic and vibrant Norwegian hardcore ambassadors: Norwegian hardcore fury, named after top soap baddle. As befits a group whose original bassist was imprisoned for liberating animals from vivisectionists, this Oslo scream quintet (signed to Omar from The Mars Volta / At The Drive-In's label) make a racket that's more than a little uncompromising. Forsaking the stetson'n'cigars of their Dallas character namesake, JR Ewing instead balance lyrics railing against poverty, complacency and conformity on top of car-crash guitars and piledriver drums. "Ride Paranoia" is a thrillingly dense, antsy record, although one suspects that their insistence - like compatriots Turbonegro - on sporting deeply suspect muzzies (moustaches) will do little to raise their public profile. Maybe if someone shot them, they'd get the fame they really deserve.
NME awards Ride Paranoia 8 out of 10.
Kerrang is equally thrilled by Ride Paranoia and awards it 4 out of 5: Ear-trashing post-hardcore mayhem from Norway. Apparently, this album is intended to be an assault on "mainstream emo vomit", which is probably one way of saying that it will probably kill any ultra-sensitive lovers of the genre stone dead on first listen. In all respects this five-piece from Oslo are about intensity and a very heavy delivery - in a jangly kind of way, that is.Only two albums old and this lot sound like well-practised veterans, which is probably down to their tough touring schedule. Of particular note are 'Naked Pavements' and 'Laughing With Daggers' which combine a creepy sense violencewith frantic Who-like dynamics and skin-crawling shrieked vocals. In fact, the entire album twitches and writhes with a feeling of deep-seated menace. Which is, of course, great.
JR Ewing’s Ride Paranoia is released by Gold Standard Laboratories and distributed by Cargo in the UK. Germany is covered by Swell Creek Records while the album is distributed by Mordam in the rest of Europe and US.sd
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