I’d be doing my 24-year-old self a great disservice if I neglected to write about, or at least make note of, the recent release of Modern Life Is War’s Fever Hunting, the influential midwest hardcore band’s return following a four-and-a-half year disbandment. Their flagship album, Witness, was released in 2005, setting the bar for earnest hardcore, both tough and nostalgic by nature, with melodic breakdowns and front man Jeffrey Eaton going red in the face with screams that sounded as sincere as they did guttural. It’s a classic of mid-2000s hardcore, with an added blue-collar, salt-of-the-earth quality to it, considering the band hails from the modest confines of Marshalltown, Iowa. They came through town in early October, playing a supremely sold out show at Cobra Lounge as well as an all-ages warmup the same day at Chitown Futbol in Pilsen.

Today’s 12 O’Clock Track, “Chasing My Tail,” is proof that Modern Life Is War hasn’t much missed a step. After a minute of dissonant, drawn-out guitar chords building the track’s tension, Eaton busts in with his typically wistful lyrics as the drums stomp along in a slow, hi-hat-heavy hardcore beat. You can sense it all moving toward an all-shout anthemic moment, and when the beat finally does pick up, you get exactly that—and it’s on point.

YouTube video