You want to be "supportive," you really do. Local boys manage to flamboozle the suits at a major label into letting them release a second album, and you want to be supportive. Local boys are still riding a should-have-crested wave of soulless gut-metal, and you want to be supportive. But "supportive" shouldn't mean blindly accepting mediocrity as something worthwhile. And on "Up the Dose," the only thing worthy of support is the notion that Skrape are at about 14:58 on the Z-list fame clock, quickly preparing for a fast descent into the anonymity that their utterly forgettable, utterly calculated and utterly soulless tattooed lifestyle soundtrack deserves. Despite the production hand of Jimbo Barton trying to whip up something grand, Skrape again splits the middle between grade-school nihilism and clumsy rock reductionism while hitting all the requisite bases of angsty junk-metal. The band's fans -- of which there are more by the day -- will dig it, if only because Skrape sounds exactly like every other band they like that's been spewed from the bowels of Youth Marketing Headquarters (Rebellion Division). People who expect more from their music -- and from their scene -- will shudder in disappointment.
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