"Last Rides of the Midway"

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Pittsburgh City Paper: Shiver - Last Rides Of The Midway
Shiver - Last Rides of the Midway

To those not deeply involved in the independent-music side of catchy, sing-along punk rock, there can seem to be only two aspects: the geriatric (or deceased) ’70s artists such as Iggy, Johnny and Joey -- whose music can now be heard in corporate commercials -- and the post-Dookie world of cookie-cutter mall-punk bands. Yet much of Generation X grew up in the mid- to late ’80s and early ’90s, and the meat in the sandwich for them are the melodic punk bands who held up the genre during those neglected years: Government Issue, Bad Religion, Naked Raygun, etc.

Pittsburgh band Shiver recognize the period, and essentially pay tribute to it on this disc of 13 swift-paced, chunka-chunka originals which are so faithful that they sound much like songs the above bands could have written. How can one listen to “Voice of Treason,” for example, and not think of Naked Raygun’s “Treason”?

However, Shiver does provide a glimmer of hope with a vision of unity that still seems remotely possible (“I believe in youth energy, dreaming everything that you wanna be”). The disc offers life advice, too, on the shout-along closer “One Life”: “You never compromise what you believe / You’ve gotta look deep inside yourself, it’s a value they can’t see.”

With sentiments like these, it’s surprising Shiver isn’t on Anti-Flag’s label, but you gotta commend Pittsburgh’s other underground institution -- Da’ Core Records -- for stepping beyond its hardcore roots and gathering together the solid, veteran parts of Pittsburgh’s punk scene. Wherever this message is heard -- whether on the Warped Tour or on the stages of tiny bars across the Midwest -- it’s clearly backed by Shiver’s strident commitment to convey meaning across the generation gap. With the release of Last Rides, punk is fun, powerful and consequential again.

Punk Planet: Shiver - Last Rides Of The Midway
Shiver - Last Rides of the Midway

Shiver’s brand of west coast skate punk will have many thinking Dag Nasty, even if this latest release has the band sounding more like the early day Strung Out. Driven by the aggressive melodies and politically charged writing, the record manages to maintain its pace over the 40 minutes, making it a nice addition to your collection.

Utter Trash: Shiver - Last Rides Of The Midway
Shiver - Last Rides of the Midway

I liked this disc right from the start. It’s nice to see that there is still some good punk music out there. This is the real thing, not that pop punk stuff. These guys are fast, loud and hardcore. They are musically better that most of the old school punk bands but that is the only real difference from the classic punks. “Rescue Me”, the first track, reminded me musically of early Dayglo Abortions only with less distortion and played better. One of my favorite tracks is “Another Day”. It has a good Suicidal Tendencies influence. The vocalist, Bruce Boul, sounds like a more melodic D. Boon from the Minutemen. The disc is only 40 minutes long, which is a good thing. Just because you have 76 minutes or so to fill doesn’t mean you have to. It’s good to see Shiver release only the good stuff and not a bunch of filler. These Pittsburgh punks are a good extension of the early hardcore that came out of the L.A. area. I think The Circle Jerks, Black Flag and the other bands I mentioned would be proud of them. Check this disc out.

All Ages Zine: Shiver - Last Rides Of The Midway
Shiver - Last Rides of the Midway

It didn't come as a shock to me that Shiver recorded at a studio partially owned by Fletcher of Pennywise fame or that they have played with NOFX, Bad Religion and countless others. What did come as a shock to me was that this CD didn't come from Epitaph. Shiver is a great band if you are into the mid-90's punk bands like Pennywise, Strung Out, NOFX, etc… They bring the melodic punk to a scene that is for the most part watered down these days. If you are looking for a band that is influenced by "punk" music then this is that band. Check them out if you like the old Epitaph/Fat Wreck sound. Good CD chalked full of in your face punk rock songs.

AMP Magazine: Shiver - Last Rides Of The Midway
Shiver - Last Rides of the Midway

Four dudes from Pennsylvania, playing hardcore punk rock the way it should be played. Sounds like these guys grew up wearing out their GOOD RIDDANCE CDs. It's a damn good recording, too, but that's what we've come to expect when it's mastered by Bill Stevenson at the Blasting Room. Fast, energetic, powerful punk rock in the vein of GOOD RIDDANCE mixed with AVAIL, with vocals that lean more towards Tim than Russ. Definitely worth checking out.

Exclaim: Shiver - Last Rides Of The Midway
Shiver - Last Rides of the Midway

Take a bunch of aging punkers (and as one, I mean that in the nicest possible way) with a love of old 7 Seconds and Government Issue music who refuse to burn out or fade away, lock them in a studio with a producer with an impressive punk track record and voila! Pittsburgh's Shiver are not breaking any new ground on their first real album, but their passion for what they're doing more than makes up for it. Vintage mid-tempo anthems with thrashy outbursts haven't sounded this fresh since Pennywise's second album.

Transcending The Mundane: Shiver - Last Rides Of The Midway
Shiver - Last Rides of the Midway

The band Shiver was born in 1997 due to a “love and excitement for the grassroots punk scene they’d been a part of since the late 1980’s.” Their influences include the Circle Jerks, Dag Nasty, Naked Raygun, and Government Issue. The Pittsburgh band has opened for noted bands like Bad Religion, No Use For A Name, NOFX, and the Damned. Shiver has participated on several compilation and have a prior release, Never Too Late.

Last Rides of the Midway is Shiver’s first album with renowned punk/ hardcore label Da’Core Records. The music here is basically punk rock but it’s highly energetic with hardcore and metal elements. Bruce is a good vocalist who presents a clear singing style and often Shiver utilize backup gang vocals. Shiver are not a typical band to be reviewed in a metal magazine, but I admire their sincerity and they play with enthusiasm.

Album Score: 8 out of 10

Shiver - Last Rides Of The Midway - Da' Core Records 2005
from Rebel Extravaganza - REBELX.org
Shiver - Last Rides of the Midway

When I think of true, unadulterated punk rock, the first bands that spring to mind are those second-wave bands that were my first experience with both the punk ethos and skating. I'm speaking of bands such as T.S.O.L., Agent Orange, Husker Du (yes, they belong), and Drunk Injuns. At that time, - around 1986 - the lines between punk and metal had blurred to the point that the same people who listened to Metallica also cranked The Misfits, Slayer, and Fear with no regard for "scene" separatism. Well, most of them at least.

It's this feeling that returned when I first pressed Play, and the So-Cal sounds of Pittsburgh's Shiver pushed me back into the days when moshing was a dance and not a deathmatch. Strange as it may seem, a band from Steel City, USA conjuring the spirit of early-mid 80's California skatepunk, Shiver knows of which they speak. From the metallic chordings of opener 'Rescue Me' to 'Anger Rising', with its Bad Religion-esque personal and internal commentary, Shiver never lose sight of the melody inherent in this style of punk. Fear not, oh slamdancer, for the one-two punch of speedpunk 'Voice Of Treason' and 'When Darkness Falls' is sure to be the catalyst of many a pit. 'Brand New History' takes its justified jabs at the American culture machine, while songs like 'Find Your Way' and 'That Sinking Feeling' burst with the self-pride and self-reliance that is the very blood in the punk rock body. Recorded at L.A.'s infamous Stall No. 2 studio under the guidance of punk production godfather Darian Rundall (Pennywise, T.S.O.L., etc.), Last Rides Of The Midway sounds full without losing any of the bite this music demands.

Shiver may be labelled "retro" or "old-school" in some circles, and I think that'd be just fine with them. This is the music they grew up with, and the music that lights the fire in their hearts, so label them what you want. I'm sure they couldn't give less of a fuck. It's bands like Shiver, and albums like Last Rides Of The Midway that reaffirm my faith in punk rock.

The Punk Site
Shiver - Last Rides of the Midway

Simple but complete is a perfect description of Shiver's Last Rides Of The Midway. The thirteen tracks are full of classic melodic hardcore full of everything from the needed gang vocals to the perfect sing along choruses and the heavy melodies. They put everything that makes melodic hardcore so good and shove it into one album that won't get tons of press but will be able to garner some great fans if it reaches the right demographic. Its not a great release, but a solid one. Nothing too outstanding or dangerous, just a nice album that flows smoothly and could be played in almost any setting.

East Coast Romper
Shiver - Last Rides of the Midway

Waving a “terrible towel” in the face of all of the sound alike emo bands out there, Pittsburgh’s Shiver have turned back the clock to the glory days of punk. No, not the 70’s three chord stuff, I’m talking when it first started merging with metal in the mid 80’s- you know, the four chord stuff. Shiver plays fast paced California style skate punk that also has some bay area speed metal riffing like the blistering opener Rescue Me. The production is solid which makes it better than some of the older skate punk that suffered from piss poor sound quality. Other recommended tracks are Brand New History, Find Your Way (both of which brought to mind Streetdogs), 20 Days (Salvation Comes) and One Life. Boys and girls, here’s your summer assignment- thrown on some Shiver and find a nice curb to grind. Preferably in a public area.

New York Waste
Shiver - Last Rides of the Midway

Last Rides of the Midway” comes from SHIVER. Hardcore sing-a-longs with razor guitars and shades of the old school. Thirteen songs for the kids.

Rock Is LIfe
Shiver - Last Rides of the Midway

True to their name, they're going to send one up your spine with their powerful, high-energy, speed punk sound. Shiver is like The Offspring with balls.

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