"Life Without A Leash"

(Self-Released 2001)

Life Without A Leash" by Norwegian band The Borderline, is a head-banging, fun punk album although if not occasionally pessimistic. Made up of excellent guitar riffs and solos, The Borderline show quite a range - from the almost ska sounding "Mother Nature" to the interestingly broken instrumental sound of "Nothing I Miss" and then the daring finish to the album, "Nights of Storm," which features a string arrangement.

Employing plenty of changes in tempo, rhythm and sound, the band adds an additional layer, or texture, to a number of the songs. With lyrics like "Push enough so they don't forget us / We're willing to destroy stability / Keep this thought / We play it our way" ("Middlefinger") they show their true punk side after previously revealing a poignant moment in "Nothing I Miss" with "And the bullet knows me / It's got my name on it / I feel it penetrating my temple / I go out of my body, I see it on the floor / God exists."

While the vocal parts and harmonies do periodically flip between being a strength and a limitation, the overall album is strong and catchy.