Hot Water Music Till the Wheels Fall Off

This is the second b-sides/rarities/outtakes record by Hot Water Music (the first being the excellent Never Ender), so it mostly documents their career after the jump to Epitaph. The most puzzling thing about Till the Wheels Fall Off are the songs not included on their albums proper, as tracks like "Kill the Night,” "Last Goodbyes” and "Home” would have no doubt improved the vastly sub-par The New What’s Next. The songs collected from their splits with Alkaline Trio and Leatherface ("God Deciding” and "Take It As It Comes,” respectively) are a strong reminder of how often HWM were at their best when they were gritty and angry. Let’s hope the inclusion of the entire Moonpies for Misfits EP — the release that signalled their return from their first hiatus and arguably one of the best things they’ve ever released — is a sign of things to come. Their selection of covers is telling of their influences: Springsteen, Leatherface, Government Issue, Turbonegro and Circle Jerks, and they round the album out perfectly. Till the Wheels Fall Off is an excellent portrait of an incredibly important band that stands head held high next to any of their past releases. Let’s just hope the string of festival dates the band are booking for the summer will lead to something a little more permanent, for all our sakes. (No Idea)