Tuesday, October 21, 2014


Hoax is a misunderstood band.

I say this because they exist in two capacities: what you see and what you've heard. What you see from Hoax both live and on record is exceptional. A Hoax live show can only be described as absolute chaos orchestrated by the band's frontman Jesse Sanes, who loses himself and reemerges briefly as a mass of deranged energy. He attacks both the crowd and himself (mostly himself) using his body and the microphone as a weapon. The music is coordinated contempt. Everything you hear from Hoax is meant to incite and illicit ugly feelings. Watching Hoax calls back to legends like YDI, Negative Approach, and other classic USHC. The band recognizes that this subculture is not meant to be uplifting by any means but rather it exists as a form of hostility, both toward the world and oneself.

What makes Hoax special, and make no mistake they are special, is that they act on those feelings. It is easy to talk about anger, discontent, and hatred. It is easy to say you're pissed off. All respect, saying that you are angry and not acting on it puts you on the same level as a Papa Roach. You don't deserve credit for declaring that you feel bad. Hoax is often criticized by much of the modern hardcore crowd for being too gimmicky. Much of the criticism is directed specifically at Sanes who is labeled a try-hard by his detractors. Consider this: the population of critics are made up of people who claim to be on the same level as Sanes, but don't act on any of it. To this end, Sanes is a try-hard if only because he is acting out the attitudes he sings about while his critics are not even trying at all. In 2014, cynicism has become the mark of the uninitiated. Hoax is criticized for being everything that their critics are not. The band plays at a level that few bands can match. Sanes' lyrics are soaked in hatred (and at live shows, his blood).

Hoax's career thus far has been spectacular. A slew of excellent EPs with a who's who of the premier labels in hardcore today; Youth Attack, Deranged, Katorga Works, La Vida En Mus, and Painkiller. A great, and underrated, debut LP that was self-released. My fear for Hoax reminds me of a young Dynamite Kid or Shawn Michaels. Explosive energy, effervescent showmen, and consistent output. Unfortunately neither the Dynamite Kid's or Shawn Michaels' bodies could keep up with the standards they set for themselves. The question will come one day for Hoax whether Sanes' body can continue to keep up with the standard and demand that the band has set.

Included is a Collection LP of all their EPs and the self-titled LP. Enjoy.


No comments:

Post a Comment