Ever since I first heard of Philadelphia’s Open City two years ago, I’ve been not so patiently waiting for them to release some music. While I really fucking hate the term “super-group”, there is really no better way to describe them. With Dan Yemin (Paint It Black, Lifetime, Kid Dynamite, Armalite), Rachel Rubino (Bridge And Tunnel, Worriers), Andy Nelson (Paint It Black, Ceremony), and Chris Wilson (Ted Leo And The Pharmacists), Open City has finally recorded their Self Titled full length album, and it completely rips.
The album kicks off with an Ink and Dagger-eque opening riff on “Hell Hath No Fury” as Rachel defiantly screams “Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned, you’re goddamn right” it’s clear that Open City aren’t pulling any punches. The perfect soundtrack for our current political climate where women, non-Christians, LGBT, immigrants and anyone else who doesn’t currently fit the current administrations wet dream, Open City’s Self Titled is a rallying cry. It’s about anger, frustration, not staying silent, and even more so the dangers of speaking out but remaining complacent and motionless.
It’s obvious that Dan and Andy have their hands in the project, bringing their sound from their other bands with them. This makes the album feel familiar, yet at the same time there’s something different and fresh about it. The songs often will sound like it could have come out of Paint It Black’s catalog, but then will suddenly sound like Swiz or Husker Du. Meanwhile, Rachel has a pretty dynamic vocal range, screaming, singing, and at certain times delivering her message with enough snarkiness to make any 90s skate punk band jealous.
A fantastic hardcore album, Open City is a must for any fan. The band is playing a string of shows in the near future, so look out for them in a basement near you.