Where the fuck do we begin with this article? Seriously, the mental block right now is absolutely unreal as this review is not typical in comparison to any of our previous articles. We didn’t just hear about this from a friend or receive a demo in the mailbox from some kid, this was a group of friends that I have personally known since we were just stupid fucking kids with no care in the world. On Sight is not just a collection of long standing friendships but a culmination of feelings derivative of passion, will, and a relentless ambition that is expressed genuinely through their music. I’ve had the fortunate opportunity to hear this project from its most infant beginnings to a time when the band was nearly named after a construction material and was nothing more than a few good riffs and an idea or two away from becoming reality. Arguments, problems, setbacks, broken bones, and every other roadblock all led to detours and setbacks. Still, had these issues never happened, could you ever say this project would be what it is at this current time?
What this band has managed to do is deliver a high-gain punch of intimidating noise that is matched with a pairing taste of aggressive timbres and tone for their listeners. Pissed off is an understatement because this self-titled debut release is more than just any cliche adjective preceded by the ever simplistic and overused expression of “very.”
No, this record is but every literal split drop of blood and every cried tear of pain that these young men have had. It is the echoes of self-worth and the fight against this crushing reality’s whole-hearted attempt in issuing torment, A suffering that seeks to eat away at the heart, mind, and soul. More importantly, On Sight has been an outlet of expression and a voice for their convictions on morality as the face of oppression is both varying and obscure.
Backroom Studios is responsible for this six track banger as Mikhail Marinas was the man behind the board while overseeing the recording, mixing, and overall production behind this first release from On Sight. Of course, let’s not forget the ever talented Kevin Antreassian (TDEP) and his work mastering this fine piece of hardcore.
Between the ass beater that is Face the Facts or the thrash infused jawn that is Insane or even the politically charged track that voices concerns of police brutality in Public Enemy, this record has a bit of everything. Regardless of your preference with hardcore, metal, or punk as this self-titled is able to demo all of these genre’s elements. Notably, in a manner that is neither corny or saturated in production. It contains a well-balanced mix of rawness and modern engineering. An incorporation that only produces a sound that is equally modern and respective towards this music’s roots.
Going to close this one up right now because I truly feel that this demo speaks for itself and that anything said is but arbitrary bullshit. Still, this is everything we need in hardcore from New Jersey, especially North Jersey. The attitude, the style, and the intent of this project are but an honest and relentless attempt against life’s struggle. This release shall act as a solid first strike towards achieving a sound that will inevitably be something unmistakable and undoubtedly understood as On Sight.
HW: Let’s kick this off with something easy, how did On Sight come to be?
JT: Well, I would definitely say we all come from quite a differing music background. Doug loves anything from Crowbar or Maylene and the Sons of Disaster and especially Metallica. He’s responsible for where we get the thrashier metal side of On Sight while Dante and Edgar (both ex: Knuckle Up!) maintain our hardcore sensibility. We all have roots within hardcore but these guys just know how to express that in such an amazing manner.
Collectively, we are starting to take a new direction with the writing process. Personally, I’d say this first E.P. was us trying to find our sound. Public Enemy and Insane sound like they are two completely different bands but, who’s following the rules in hardcore?
HW: How was the production and engineering process like over at Backroom Studios?
JT: Backroom was sick. Working with Mikhail to get this release done properly was a cool time. There was a lot of equipment at Backroom to get our hands on so between finding what head to use for reamping or deciding what snare sounds best, it was a cool learning experience. Especially for someone like me who’s never been in a band or ever even recorded an album.
Darren killed it on the recording. Drums are the hardest thing to get done in my opinion but he knocked the songs out at like 4 am on top of everything. I guess that was the only downside of recording Backroom is it’s always full it’s a busy place so only time slot we could get was like 11 at night until the next morning.
HW: What are your feelings in regards to how the EP turned out and with Mikhail Marina behind the overall production?
Doug: Almost all these songs on this EP are actually pretty old. We’ve been sitting on most of these songs for a really long time and I want to say almost a year now. I’m incredibly happy with how they came out on the EP and I’m glad it’s finally out there yah know? It just felt like it took forever to do so. We’ve been playing these songs for so long now and we’re just really eager to start writing new material, especially with this current line up.
We love these songs though and we worked really hard to get them out there but, I think everyone in the band would agree that we’re excited to just finally start writing some new jams.
Recording these songs with Mikhail Marina’s at Backroom was great. It was a lot of fun working with him and I really love how the production came out.
Just really relieved to have them out there finally for people to check out so they can interact with us better at our shows.
HW: Can you give us a glimpse into the future of On Sight and as to what the direction will be with the new music?
D: The future looks really bright so far. The new songs we’ve started to write is quite a bit more organized and closer to what we want to sound as a band in general. There is a lot of stuff we’re working on this year. From new music to merch, and playing different shows.
Despite all the bumps, we’ve finally started to get things to roll smoother in motion and honestly it is only moving forward from here on out. So yeah, we’re really excited for what’s to come and I can promise you one thing; these new songs are gonna hit way harder, have a ton of more riffs, and a shit load of energy than this current release.
We’re here to make you move and that’s absolutely what we’re gonna fucking do. Nonstop energy all the time. This is just the beginning.
HW: Personally, what track would you say stands out the most on this debut release?
JT: Favorite song on the album would have to be Shameless. The lyrics I wrote are self-explanatory to this song’s message and intent. It is the song with the most meaning I’d say, and it’s pit as fuck.
HW: What can we expect from On Sight this summer?
JT: Expect a lot more music to be coming out because we’re already writing new shit. Love seeing people come out to our shows and screaming into that mic so keep that shit up!
HW: Any last words or shout outs?
JT: Shout out to Mosh for Paws for giving us our first couple shows, to our homies in Bliss (expect some shit from those boys), Drawn Out, Threat 2 Society, Wastelands, and of course Head Walk for supporting us from the start.
D: Really like to thank all the hardworking New Jersey & New York based bands out there such as Wastelands, Threat 2 Society, The Machinist, Gladiators, Grievance, This Curse, MOAM (Monument of a Memory), That of a Lion, Inverted Earth, Give Up the Goods, Reborn Divided, my dudes in Trench, and Minor Morals in Arizona.
Make sure you check all them out. Shout out to Kevin Oakley (Mosh 4 Paws), Matt Rochford, and Eddie Trefurt. You guys are the bomb. Also to my family and friends for all the never-ending love and support, you’re all amazing. And everyone in general who has ever supported us since the start of this new adventure. I love you all so very much, thank you.