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Hot Water Music
Saturday, Nov. 22. The Edge, 260 S. California Ave., Palo Alto; 650.289.0222, 6pm. $12

Erase the stereotype of Florida as the mecca of punk/emo, because these four guys from Gainesville, Fla., aren't even close. Like an Everglades hovercraft on turbo, Hot Water Music careened to the upper echelon of punk appreciation. With dual vocals set to the powerful specs of Face to Face and music that hints at Van Halen, this band isn't for sensitive punk/emo kids. Instead, Hot Water Music sound a call to all hardcore punks: get ready for a revival.

Chuck Ragan (vocals, guitar), Chris Wollard (vocals, guitar), Jason Black (bass) and George Rebelo (drums) formed the band in 1994 and are all nearing the ripe, decidedly unpunk age of 30. Looking at their age as a virtue, Hot Water Music stay true to their punk roots, owing it all to having lived in an era when Black Flag reigned.

The band gets lumped in as emo, and the guys get nauseous at the thought of perpetuating the stereotype. But just because they sound smart doesn't mean they've deviated from the direction they set in motion nine years ago. The band is touring to promote its 16th release, Caution (Epitaph, 2002). The 12-track album reads like a journal, targeting a more mature group of listeners with a compilation of moods, allowing listeners to experience the rock & roll life Hot Water Music have endured since 1994. The song "Remedy" provides angst, woes and cynicism, while "Sweet Disasters" provides bits of optimism.

Hot Water Music proves it is still a band with balls that can mesh both substance and melody while keeping true to its origin. Music fans desperately looking for substance in a whine-free zone are immersing themselves. Whether popping in Caution in their CD players or joining the Edge mosh pit to release resentment for the irritating popularity of contrived music, they will be scalding 12 times over by boiling Hot Water Music. (Mariecar Mendoza)

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Winter Music Guide 2003
The Fingerbangerz
The Faction
David Bowie
The Matches
The Ataris
The Brian Setzer Orchestra
Good Charlotte
Hot Water Music
The Polyphonic Spree
Ticketmaster's new bid-for-tickets system
Winter music listings

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From the October 30-November 5, 2003 issue of Metro, Silicon Valley's Weekly Newspaper.

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