Sep 22, 2022
By Matthew Berlyant
Originally released in 2021 and now in its second pressing, this single LP collects all of the recorded work by 2000s Philly-area straight-edge hardcore band One Up, who played shows with hardcore legends like Agnostic Front, Bane, Have Heart, and many others. Little known outside of the Northeast despite extensive touring, their biggest impact was perhaps felt in the Wilkes Barre, PA area, where a young, fledgling band called Title Fight were greatly inspired by One Up’s many live appearances in the area, particularly at the long defunct Posi Numbers festival.
All that said, this reissue documents (in reverse chronological order) everything they ever recorded starting with 2004’s The Single, featuring by a cover of Texas is the Reason’s “If It’s Here When We Get It Back, It’s Ours,” indicative of the more melodic direction the band was pursuing at the time before deciding to call it quits.
This was quite an impressive offering from a band that started as a straightforward hardcore band strongly influenced by luminaries like Youth of Today, Bold, Chain of Strength, Mouthpiece, and perhaps most significantly, the short-lived but massively influential ’90s New Jersey juggernaut Floorpunch. Even at their most melodic, One Up was always very audibly a hardcore band and though some fans at the time (as is often the case) taken aback by the slight direction change, this music has held up quite well.
Modeling their career after the late ’80s/early ’90s NJ band Turning Point, another massively influential group, presenting this material in reverse chronological order actually shows the similarities between their earlier and later material, perhaps more than a straight chronological track order would. Most of the other material included here was originally released as The More Things on Change and as It’s Time to Believe (their only album) and it should be noted that this is also the vinyl debut of the latter, which was only released on CD. For good measure, their much-loved 2002 demo is also included.
The graphics here (done by Jason Mazzola of Count Me Out and Cloak/Dagger) are stunning as well and the packaging is beautiful overall, with stunning photos and vinyl colors to boot alongside a full lyric sheet and testimonies from fans like Pat Flynn from the aforementioned Have Heart and John Scharbach of Give and Shining Life press, to name a few. This is an absolutely fantastic release on the very reliably great Hellminded label. (www.hellmindedrecords.com)
Author rating: 7.5/10
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