There was not much going around IGNITE in the last years but now they are back and if you always liked this exceptional band, you will also love their new masterpiece. So if you adored works like “Call On My Brothers”, “In My Time” or the followers “Past Out Means” and “A Place Called Home”, you have to have “Our Darkest Days”, too. One could also easily say that only few bands managed it to create records with such an amount of high class ear-candies. IGNITE were always famous for their mixture of melodic Hardcore, Rock and Punk and “Our Darkest Days” is another unmatchable masterpiece.
The unique quintet from Orange County is still a class for its own. Their music is amazing and it is completed by the moving and distinctive vocals of the Hungarian Zoli Teglas; these are the basic elements for IGNITE, which are a ten years long guarantee for highly intelligent stuff. This is not only limited to the music itself, it also affects their dedicated and politically influenced lyrics. And there’s another element, which makes this band that irresistible and important as well: IGNITE stood always true to their roots and their new album comes up with absolutely no hint of being commercially. Of course, “Our Darkest Days” is highly melodic and quite accessible but it’s always natural and never trendy. Don’t worry, heaviness and power are always given but they luckily don’t find it necessary to interrupt the music by breakdowns or mosh parts.
Their way is different and it works fine and if you always wanted to know if one can simultaneously bang your head and sing along to a song, you will find the answer short after the intro. “Bleeding” is then the starter of this series of catchy tunes, “Fear Is Our Tradition” follows in the same direction and the album delivers more of such highlights in form of the hit “Let It Burn” or the upbeat “Poverty For All”. Another advantage of them is that they keep their songs mostly under the three minutes mark. IGNITE come always straight to the point and there’s no neverending repeating of melodies. So why lengthen a song up to five minutes or more when creating the best effect with such shortness. Hats off! But the journey goes on and the number of highlights won’t end; there comes “My Judgement Day” or “Slowdown”, which is a murderously catchy song. The speed grenade “Save Yourself”, “Are You Listening” or “Three Years” keep the tension high and intensity and joy are always present. “Know Your Enemy” and “Strength” are no exceptions, of course. A nice bonus comes with the U2 cover song “Sunday Bloody Sunday”; a well often covered song but these guys do it the best. Last but least, closing “Live For Better Days” comes around with some acoustic guitars and a female voice until Zoli Teglas starts to sing in his mother tongue. This is a gorgeous final and a strong contrast to the other songs.
And if you’re a bit confused after all this, you should better press the repeat button and travel again through the darkest days of IGNITE. But be assured, there’s a light at the end of the tunnel and as dark the days may be, this album makes the sun shine the whole day. Of course, the sound production is top notch as well and with Cameron Webb (e.g. MOTÖRHEAD, SOCIAL DISTORTION, SUM 41 or SILVERSTEIN), they engaged a genius as producer. After all, I can only give the highest rating, there’s no other possibility. Still having questions? (Online June 8, 2006)