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Self-Help

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Album Review

When Virginia's Spitfire decided to call it a day in 2001, shortly after the release of their four-track EP The Slideshow Whiplash, the group couldn't have had any idea that their musical genre was about to be finally embraced by the mainstream. With MTV opting to accept heavy music once more (something the station decides to do every few years), "hardcore metal" acts began making regular trips to the charts. So with the musical climate completely changed in their favor, the Spitfire folks couldn't have picked a better time to reunite and issue their second full-length overall, Self-Help. While hardcore serves as the basis for the quintet's sound (as evidenced by the heavy riffs and screamed vocals of frontman Jon Spencer — not the same gentleman who fronts the Blues Explosion), like most heavy bands circa 2006, the group also incorporates in progressive elements as well. The end result is an incredibly dense sound, as evidenced by such selections as "Meat Market," "The Great White Noise," and the craftily titled "The Suicide Cult Is Dead." As evidenced by Self-Help, Spitfire is one of the few bands that may be able to appeal to fans of both the Dillinger Escape Plan and Mars Volta.

Biography

Formed: 1996 in Virginia Beach, VA

Genre: Alternative

Years Active: '90s, '00s

While under the influences of heavy indie/hardcore hitters such as Fugazi, Motörhead, Slayer, Unsane, and Godflesh, among others, Matt Beck (guitar/vocals), Jimmy Reeves (bass), and Chris Raines (drums) formed Spitfire in 1996 in order to make a little noise in their quiet Virginia Beach community. With the release of their debut EP, Straining Toward What's to Come, Solid State took notice and signed a deal with Spitfire; this resulted in the release of their first full-length, Dead Next Door, in...
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Self-Help, Spitfire
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