Album Review: “Glow On” – Turnstile

Posted: by The Editor

On their latest LP, hardcore band Turnstile explore their sound more than ever on Glow On. Taking new risks instrumentally while still staying true to their hardcore roots. It seems like a natural progression from their last LP, Time & Space in 2018. Yet what makes Glow On different is the songwriting risk that they take with each track. 

Opening track “Mystery” begins with an interesting synthesizer wave of sound and then abruptly ends and transitions to the more traditional guitar sound that we’ve grown accustomed to from Turnstile. One of the bigger differentiators in sound on this track from Turnstile’s previous releases is the tempo. They take it down a notch, which is a refreshing departure from the heavier and faster-pace tracks they’ve had on earlier records. Yet a lot of the attitude and hardcore-spirit shines through, through the vocal-delivery and overall tonality of the instrumentals. As the track continues, the band continues to deliver on amazing riffs on both bass and guitar. The percussion carries the track through, punching through the more signature hardcore tones being delivered by the bass and guitar. “Mystery” sets the tone for how this record is going to take course. 

“Blackout” is closer to what we’ve heard from Turnstile before. Punchy percussion, borderline screaming vocals, and distorted guitar tones. While being more familiar, “Blackout” has its place on Glow On. It’s an incredible transition from “Mystery” and pays homage to their older sound, while still being polished and tonally sticking with the record. Other tracks however, like “Don’t Play” completely deviate from that sound and even take influence from a funk-ish kind of riff. Adding some instrumentals such as maracas to the percussion create a nice punch and playfulness to the track. Other elements such as the guitar “solo” at the end of the track still speak true to their hardcore roots, but do it in a way where the sound is risky and isn’t repetitive. 

The track “Humaniod/Shake It Up” feels heavily influenced by older punk icons such as Minutemen and Minor Threat. The fast-paced tempo and gang-vocals feel reminiscent of that time, but are broken by the synthesizer at multiple points throughout the track. A fun track, “T.L.C. (Turnstile Love Connection)” is classic Turnstile with a catchy hook, and call and response. Creating a sound of their own that is progressing from that older-hardcore/punk sound that they’ve been playing up in their earlier releases. It’s great to hear small bits such as playing with the tempo and adding other instruments being incorporated into the Turnstile sound. They’ve become such a heavyweight and staple in the hardcore and punk community over the years, and Glow On seems like such a natural progression in their songwriting and general spirit of the band. 

Disappointing / Average/ Good / Great / Phenomenal

by Sarah Knoll

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