Punk's hardly the underground sound it once was, but the talent's concentrated more in bands that have survived the fallow years after Green Day's initial breakthrough than in the Johnny-Punk-Latelys "popping" up all over. H2O's been at it since 1995, when Sick of It All roadie Toby Morse (who would occasionally perform one of his songs at SOIA shows that lacked an opening act) recruited some friends and set about merging the hardcore attack of Minor Threat with the anthemic melodic crunch of Bad Religion. They recorded a couple of albums for Epitaph in the late Nineties, including the terrific F.T.T.W. (standing for ÔFaster Than The World,' among other things), but their 2001 MCA debut, Go!, was probably a mistake. While the album was good, it received little push and the band's been mired in a state of inactivity ever since. Yet whatever H2O's recorded output, it's still a tremendously energetic act that unites the hooks of Cali punk with the hardcore pulse of the East Coast into a fun, fiery roar. The band appears with has-been punk (truth hurts, Danzig) K.O. artists Northside Kings.


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