Opening Band (Hockey Dad)
It’d be presumptuous, given the years that the group has spent headlining shows around town, to say the title track of B-Lines’ Opening Band is completely autobiographical, but lead snarler Ryan Dyck definitely takes a perverse pleasure in lambasting the band on the self-deprecating punk cut. “You can get away with a lot when no one shows up,” he cries maniacally over a stop-start riff, admitting to abusing guest-list privileges in hopes of actually performing for someone who gives a damn.
Unhinged, hopeless hardcore at its most nihilistic, the sophomore LP from the quartet finds Dyck using a feral hyena’s howl to weigh in on life’s emptiness (“Supplements”), the futility of relationships (“Acknowledgements”), black-out nights (“Tell Me”), and more. Once again pulling influence from Angry Samoans and Circle Jerks, Scotty Colin’s punch-drunk barrage of barre chords is only occasionally interrupted by his bend-heavy microsolos.
“Do You Know Who I Am?” is a speedy standout poking holes in the idiocy of scenester cred and the fact that most records are doomed to the dollar bin. Trading in B-Lines’ latest would be a mistake, but it’s easy to imagine record clerk Dyck cackling behind the counter at Neptoon, just waiting for the used copies to come flooding in.