In 2002, Glassjaw released their follow-up, "Worship and Tribute." While "Eveveryting You Ever Wanted to Know About Silence" was framed around scorned love and extreme isolation, the sophomore effort was a little less emo and little more lyrically obscure. Daryl had definitely matured by the second album, and had had the time to get over the Tiger, the femme fatale who fueled his rage on the first record. The track that is the easiest to understand is "Radio Cambodia," in which Daryl tackles the atrocities and intricacies of war. He does make a few nautical references on "Trailer Park Jesus" and "Two Tabs of Mescaline," in which he respectively croons, "I jumped ship into a burning cell, atom bomb," and "Sailor, safe."
Sometime between 2015 and 2017, Daryl and guitarist Justin Beck got together to jam again. That jam session resulted in "Material Control," the band's first LP since 2002, in which they enlisted a bass and Dillinger Escape Plan drummer, Billy Rymer. The first track on the album is "New White Extremity," which was their first single - one that certainly had hardcore fans abuzz. I figured that Glassjaw must be about to put something out in terms of a new EP or LP, a reward to whet our appetites after so much time away. "New White Extremity" is a great opener to the album, which tells me that in his time away, Justin Beck has been listening to a lot of Every Time I Die - another personal favorite. While Daryl Palumbo will go down in history as one of my favorite vocalists of all time, it's Beck that really makes this record pop. The guitars are gritty and meticulous and unrelenting, avoiding hardcore tropes for the subtleties of the genre instead. Beck channels Every Time I Die ax men Andy Williams and Jordan Buckley in the breakdown of the song. He links one riff to another with clever little guitar spasms that come off like a carefully constructed moments of improve. Daryl's distinctive voice soars over a plain of guitar chops and pounding bass licks, projecting a slew of rhythmic brutality. Fair warning. This track will do nothing to cure your anxiety, but if you feel the need to psych yourself up or to break something, turn it up, and turn it up loud.
"Shira" carries on much like the verse of "New White Extremity," with choppy guitar licks and a descending bass line. This, along with "New White Extremity," is one of the better tracks, capturing the band's 2002 sound. The verse is searing and all business, while the chorus comes in melodic and familiar. Toward the end of the track, Beck comes in with another familiar element - a guitar riff nearly taken straight from the debut album standout track, "Siberian Kiss." "Shira" successfully meshes the best elements of Glassjaw's first two LPs as a reminder that they're still indeed Glassjaw, and they still remember their roots pretty well.