Review: Earth Crisis, Strife, & Snapcase - Return of the California Takeover
When I got into hardcore, and I’m dating myself here, this album was just coming out. I had missed the fabled tour. It was the height of 90’s Victory Records. I was loving all 3 of the bands. The tour and culmination of it in this live album would go onto be things of legends over the years as all 3 are pillars of the hardcore community and influenced so many.
The bands would continue throughout the 00’s, 10’s, etc, some more than others. Snapcase being the only one to not release new music since their last album and original final show. Regardless, there have been demands for this tour to happen again pretty much since it originally happened. 25 year later it happened, and it became for many, their last show before the pandemic hit. Thankfully, the audio was capture for another release, this time on Andrew from Strife’s label, WAR Records.
The Return of the California Takeover in the least is a testament to the staying power of these band’s music and how to this very day still influence new kids getting into hardcore. Produced by Aaron Bruno of Awolnation and Eric Stenman and mastered by Arthur Rizk, this release is sonic representation of how important these songs still are years later.
Like the original, each band is represented by 4 of their songs. Difference here, each band had “newer” material than the last time, so that is cover. Earth Crisis even playing a song from their first post-reunion album in To Ashes. I’m most thankful for Constrict being added as I feel outside of the title track, Gomorrah’s Season Ends is often overlooked.
Like the original, between song banter was kept on showing how important the message is to hardcore, more important the music most times. Snapcase’s intro for Incarnation being a prime example of this. All 3 bands are certainly on in age, but that doesn’t hold back any energy whatsoever. They’re all firing on all cylinders. While it’s hard to match the now classic original California Takeover, the return of does a damn good job. Production wise, it’s certainly a step up as obviously technology has improved. Now, if the world can keep righting itself, I’ll get to see this myself in the east coast version of these shows this year!