The fourth song, Between The Lines starts suddenly and quickly grabs your attention with some hoarse screaming. As the song progresses, it becomes more melodic and almost like a pop punk track at times. Jumping between styles effortless, this really shows what a good band Jet8 are. The track is about how the government and the media feed us lies to scare us into doing what they think is right. This was one of my favourite songs on the album. Not only is it really interesting musically but it's so powerful lyrically. Be The Best At All The Bad begins in a similar fashion with some more primal, hoarse screams welcoming us into the song. After these screams, the song starts up properly with its chorus. Packed with big gang vocals and delivered in a way which is easier for the listener to pick up and sing-along to, you quickly feel a part of the track. This is a song about self-improvement with the message of being able to be better even if you're someone who has done a lot of bad things.
Die Alone begins the second half of Chasing The High. Feeling like one of the more personal songs on the album, on this track Martin sings about a close friend who gets imprisoned for committing a crime and how he feels like they've let him down. As it's more personal, it definitely feels like there is a lot more emotion in the song. This doesn't mean, however, that it's not another mosh inducing hardcore banger that will have you bumping into everyone around you. The seventh song is titled Helping Hand and will feature on an upcoming CPRW Records comp. It's a song that implores you to be less selfish and try to help more people who really need it. If we work together to help the less fortunate, we can really do a lot. I loved the positive message surrounding this song. It's another powerful track that will hopefully inspire folk to do more to help those in need. If you're a fan of the UK ska punk scene then you should recognise the familiar voice that appears on the eighth track, Minute To Midnight. Faintest Idea's Dani Rascal makes a special guest appearance. It's a political track about how the people in charge are more willing to spend money on things that aren't important, rather than things that could save our planet. Martin and Dani ask throughout the song "how will we survive?" Sadly, it's a very legitimate question.
The penultimate song is Down And Out. One of the more brass heavy songs on Chasing The High, particularly in its opening. I appreciated this, particularly as when I got to see them I found myself to be enamoured with their brass section and the energy they brought to the songs. The band change their style up on the track with, at times, an almost hip hop style to the vocal delivery. This keeps Chasing The High sounding fresh and exciting this deep into its duration. The chorus is a big one, with gang vocals and Martin's lead taking turns on each line. It sounds fantastic. The album is finished with the song Golden Cage. This was a perfect choice to finish the album and I wonder if it was written with that idea in mind. It starts slowly, gradually building up before we get to the most ferocious hardcore song on the entire album. It's the good kind of hardcore that gets you worked up and inspires you to go make a difference in the world. Unlike a lot of hardcore tracks, it's not played at 100mph. If you listen to the music, it's very intricate, with all of the band's members playing a part in layering this great backing for Martin's vocals. A fine way to finish the album.
The biggest concern I had when listening to this album, after first listening to Jet8 in a live setting, was would they be able to match the intensity and energy of that performance on record? I'm sure you can work out from reading the review that I had no need for any concern for this. It takes a very good band to be able to take the energy from their live set and get it down on record. Jet8 are a very good band.
Stream and download Chasing The High on Bandcamp here.
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This review was written by Colin Clark.