“Do you remember when things were fresh and new, you had a feeling like something was going on, you based your whole life around it, it didn’t matter because it was all you thought of anyway”
- Light the Fuse and Run
The lyrics above may very well have been describing the attitude of jaded hardcore kids towards Virginia quintet Light the Fuse and Run when they first stormed onto the local scene in the summer of 2000. Like so many seminal bands in this particular genre, although they would leave an indelible imprint on those who were to follow, Light the Fuse and Run’s existence was to be as abrupt and intense as their own sonic creations.
Fire Sale is essentially an abridged document of this band’s three year existence for all of those unlucky enough to miss out on the ride. Comprising their self-titled 7”, various unreleased demos, and a handful of live tracks, Fire Sale is prescriptive of Light the Fuse and Run’s trademark rock and roll-influenced hardcore. Vocalist Chris Terry shouts rhythmically over fuzzy staccato guitars which you can’t help but shake your ass along to. This is not your melancholy sister’s emotional hardcore, that’s for sure.
The surprisingly well recorded live set, when contrasted against the early material featured on this compilation, serves to illustrate how effectively and succinctly this band grew into their own beast. From their first songs, which sometimes mimicked archetypal ‘screamo’ dynamics, they eventually evolved into a full-blown rock powerhouse. Most evident, however, is the uncanny sense of fun which Light the Fuse and Run’s music brought to a scene oftentimes a bit too serious for its own good. That in itself was revolutionary.
Fire Sale is the soundtrack to a small band tearing their way across the US in a crappy van playing their guts out each and every night, and in doing so giving kids a reason to once again believe in hardcore, in music, and in life. It is a soundtrack to a revolution experienced by a lucky few over a few hot summers between ’00 and ’03. Those kids can forever revel in their memories of those days. As for the rest of us? We can only sit back, listen to this record and imagine what it must have been like. Highly recommended.