Burn, ...From the Ashes (Bridge Nine Records, 2016)

It's no secret how we feel about Chaka Malik around these parts, so you won't be surprised by how excited we were about the news that his band, Burn, was going to be issuing new music. The post-hardcore outfit's most recent release was 2002's Last Great Sea EP, so most folks weren't sure what to expect from Malik and company.

Featuring the new ryhthm section of Manuel Carrero (Stillsuit, Glassjaw, Saves the Day) and Durijah Lang (Glassjaw, Saves the Day, Classic Case), Burn go for the throat on ...From the Ashes. Opener "Novelist (Drums of War)" sets the mood with a slinky verse section that hugely benefits from Carrero and Lang's instrumental prowess, while Malik's commanding vocal lines and Gavin Van Vlack's extra fat guitar riffs ride the groove out. Things get noisy later in the track, with the arrangement speeding up towards the end, bringing things to a breathless close.

Of the three tracks on ...From the Ashes, "You Can't Stop Me" is probably the one that comes closest to the sound of Burn's 1990 eponymous EP. It's a straightforward (at least in Burn's world) rager that finds Malik being double-tracked in parts, creating a manic energy that suits the song well. "We Don't Stand a Chance" ends the EP with another monster groove that then disintegrates before building up again into a hard-charging riff and rhythmic segment.

With Burn regularly performing throughout the world these days, let us hope ...From the Ashes is just the next step towards a full-length album from these NYC greats.

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