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Is it punk? Hardcore? Garage? Make up your own mind about Cloak/Dagger’s latest full-length, Lost Art.
Colin Barth’s winding guitars juggle melody, punch and vitriol on par with the Avengers, John Reis, Mission of Burma and Greg Ginn. Play it loud on tracks such as “Deathbed Rebels” that push the punk envelope a bit further with frenzied, circle-pit fodder reminiscent of the Circle Jerks and Big Boys. Underneath, snaking rolls of bass drive the proceedings with the flawless percussive thrust of the Ramones, Hot Snakes and bygone Boston hardcore heroes F.U.s, Jerry’s Kids. Over this Jason Mazzola distinguishes the band with a full, arching tenor that’s more bellow than scream. Mazzola’s delivery and lyrics shine especially on numbers like “Lower Eastada” and “Dead Idols,” where the band’s punk ‘n roll swagger takes over (think more Johnny Thunders, less Ray Cappo). After listening to Lost Art, you won’t be worried about categorizing the band, only when they go back on tour.
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