Review: Chokehold – With This Thread I Hold On

Chokehold’s last full-length album was released in 1995 so it’s fair to say I was a little young to have a grasp of Canadian hardcore last time they put out a record.

There’s an added dimension to any review of With This Thread I Hold On – not only is it an album to be judged on its own merits, but when album number three arrives 24 years after album number two, the ability of a band that formed in 1990 to sound fresh in 2019 is sure to be a point of interest.

Opener ‘2.0’ lays waste to any concerns in that regard. With a guitar tone that could tear through kevlar, Chokehold would survive a blind sonic tasting against any of today’s popular hardcore-ish acts.

There’s roots hardcore in their sound, for sure, but the fire and tone and delivery aren’t out of place today.

With This Thread I Hold On is an album of riffs, bounce and malicious intent. ‘Threads’ packs a ferocious, threatening slow section that edges it towards the realm of Old Wounds, but it trades primarily on stomp.

‘Profit Over People’ demonstrates masterful command of riff-writing and catchy political punch, while ‘G.O.D.’ simply offers up an unholy chug.

‘No Shelter’ is a highlight and flickers between pulsating and measured, and it sets up a closing one-two of ‘Instilled’ and ‘Underneath’.

‘Instilled’ is an arse-wiggling behemoth of a song, irresistibly catchy and crafted to perfection – you can’t buy experience. The last song follows a similar ethos, rounding out a really good record in style.

I’m not familiar with the story of Chokehold. But they have a sound that I’ve become very much accustomed to over the years, and on this album they’ve applied it to a cracking collection of songs.

With This Thread I Hold On is out now on Good Fight.

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Chris Nee