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Ignite's 6-Pack Proffers Punk Promise : ** IGNITE; "Past Our Means"; Revelation

March 14, 1997|MIKE BOEHM

Hard-core punk is more about speed and ranting than song-craft and musicality, but this young Orange County foursome has a way of making it more listenable than most.

It helps, of course, that this particular shot of hard-core comes in an easy-to-swallow dosage--six songs clocking in at total of 14 minutes. But Ignite, based in Fountain Valley, shows signs that it can build on its hard-and-fast foundation and branch out into more open-ended punk forms.

Singer Zoli Teglas has an effective, high-pitched yowl to get across his high-minded sentiments, which include broadsides against bigotry and environmental degradation and songs declaring antipathy toward two-faced friends and appreciation for the great gift of having an intact, fully functioning body.

Given hard-core's strictures, these ideas all get telegraphed and sloganized rather than developed. Pithiness, however, itself can be impressive--such as when Ignite sums up its disdain for environmental spoilage with the haiku-like refrain "Ecosystems gone / Developers, go build in hell."

Some rudimentary melodic and rhythmic hooks and shifts in density and tempo offset Ignite's traditional punk-rock polka pummeling, the fast 1-2 beat that's the favored dance of hard-core fans. Listening to Teglas' earnest yelp, one is readily reminded of Rage Against the Machine's Zack de la Rocha, who, as a member of Inside Out, also did his early punk woodshedding on the Huntington Beach-based Revelation label.

(Available from Revelation Records, P.O. Box 5232, Huntington Beach, CA 92615-5232. [714] 375-4264, Web site: http://www.revhq.com).

Ratings range from * (poor) to **** (excellent), with three stars denoting a solid recommendation.

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