Insight – “Reflection” CD / LP (Mission Two Entertainment)
Battle Helm Rating
Originators of the Salt Lake City hardcore punk scene back in the 80’s, Insight have returned in the definitive release of “Reflection” – a 19 number career spanning discography of brand new, never released songs, 1989’s “Standing Strong” EP release (a.k.a. the “What Will It Take” 7”), a 1989 live set from New Jersey while on tour supporting Social Distortion, and old, hard-to-find compilation tracks. One of Victory Records’ first signings in ’89, Insight’s ‘..broadsword to the neck..’ music was matched by their socially conscious lyrics on drug-free ethics and animal rights, which, in many ways set the blueprint for other bands to follow. Through a dedicated purpose of bringing people together with positivity and strength, the band, who’ve remained friends for 30 years, felt their music has as much relevance today given the current political climate as it did for those who supported them as teenagers back in the ’80s. Indeed, such was the feeling for their followers that Insight have returned with exactly the same members as in ’89 as a true reminder, although “Reflection” is way more than just a retrospective! With a heavy but immediately catchy vibe, ‘Identity Crisis’ brings its power of unity through its massive chorus shout outs, while the slow and fast tempo changesadd alternating emotional depth to the intensity. Getting faster and more volatile is ‘End The Cruelty’, which might be the shortest song on the album at just over a minute, but is no less fiercer in its mix of wall of noise guitars, massive shout outs and through the impassioned vocals of Mark Starr, starkly conveys the heart rendering sentiment around this controversial topic that has never gone away. Crunching in through a mix of dirty guitars laced with catchy punk melodies, ‘Lost In My Pride’ reflects the angst in Starr’s hoarse roars amid more classic 80s en masse shout outs, while the metallic breaks add a memorable crossover element as does the fiery rock n roll solo towards the end – brilliant! “Reflection” is the extremities Insight sought back in their early days now turned into an essential element of today’s existence.