April 2008

Fear Nuttin Band - Yardcore
Bodog Music BDGCD1007
Format: CD
Released: 2008

by Shannon Holliday

Musical Performance ***1/2
Recording Quality ***1/2
Overall Enjoyment ***1/2

Hailing from Springfield, Massachusetts, Fear Nuttin Band is a blend of hardcore dancehall, hip-hop, reggae and rock. Yardcore is a tightly produced, complete picture of this genre-bending band. From the strong convictions of hip-hop to the philosophies of Rastafarianism, frontmen Rootsa and Prowla vocalize about real-world struggles, politics and positivism. Their rude-boy style is comparable to such high energy acts as Fishbone, Living Color and Bad Brains.

The intensity of the music is well suited for the energy of the lyrics. Overriding confidence and faith in their success is the theme of the song "Vibes" and the effect is convincingly powerful. "Police State" borrows from the Tenor Saw dancehall classic "Ring the Alarm" to warn of the possible evolutionary escalation from police state to police world. A tight drum-and-bass section drives the band and allows the two vocalists to toast and trade rhymes over an unrelenting rhythm.

Produced by Terry Date (Deftones, Pantera, Soundgarden, Smashing Pumpkins), Yardcore achieves its ambitious attempt at defying categorization and singular appeal. The sound is amplified and energetic, with a pulsing, live feel despite the in-the-studio recorded quality. With Yardcore, Fear Nuttin Band is making a drive for the end zone, and this surge is nothing but enthusiastic, admirable and completely rockin’.