I’ll never forget the first time I heard of Brooklyn residents MakeWar. Toby from Red Scare told me to check them out about 3 years back, so naturally I did. I was completed obsessed with what I heard instantly and moments later realized they were on the bill for the last Dag House show happening in just a couple hours. I dropped everything I was doing that night and made it to the dark basement in Cleveland to see them play.
After their set, they announced they needed to hightail it out of there to drive to, if I am not mistaken, Nebraska. I panicked and searched the house for one of the band members because I refused to leave without getting some form of merch from them.
I was able to find Jose Preito just before he finished his goodbyes and stupidly asked him if the merch was already packed up. He stopped what he was doing and led me out to their tour van and with Edwin Santacruz’s help, dug out their 2015 self-titled amped up release and sold it to me. He then gave me a big hug, thanked me, and jumped into the van they were about to call home for a few days.
It’s something I will not forget. I knew then they would not be one of those bands that faded away and that bigger things were in store for them in due time. It was no surprise to me when they announced they signed to Fat Wreck Chords. It just made sense.
Get It Together is the band’s 3rd or 4th release pending how you take their self-titled releases into consideration. In past times, the tracks were tough heart-tugging tracks best served with rounds of liquid courage. This time around, the band really seemingly took a deep breath, said fuck it, and moved forward less reserved.
Kicking off the album was “Hopeless Dreamers”, a track that brought friendships close thanks to mindsetting lines like “the night is drunk and we are all young”. This track carried me back to the days of heading to certain lounges that no longer have occupancy while surrounded by pals.
Kicking it up a notch was “No Excuses”, a track that really showed a different side to MakeWar I was not prepared for, but loved. It was sped up and direct. There was also the ending breakdown on the track. Damn fine if you ask me.
“Squeeze” dipped back to the days of flannel shirts and Doc Martins in the best way possible. Once again the band hit a different territory and nailed it. Full of anxiety and anxiousness, the track was one of my favs on the album.
Then there was “No Más”. As a middle-aged white boy, I have no clue what Edwin was screaming but it was awesome. The same applied with “Inmunda Realized”, but in all honesty, that song kicked major ass,
The highly addictive “Sails” was one of the first singles I heard off the album and it was beautifully down. This was one of those tracks where I couldn’t help but to think to myself how much these boys have matured as musicians.
“Oh, Brother” was another single I heard previous to the release and carried that MakeWar style I grew accustomed to years back. The song hit me hard as someone who still struggles with growing up. There was so much good intentions on this track that also reminded me that getting old isn’t the end of the world and even us old punks can still have fun.
Overall Get It Together was an impressive release. In fact, the second listen is when I really found myself getting lost in the music and lyrics. I am not saying they redefined punk rock, but they certainly made their own footprint.
MakeWar comes from all over the place literally and this album really showcased that. Jose was originally from Venezuela, Edwin came from Colombia, and Greg came from that state where that naked dude ate the face off of someone once aka Florida but left the band after album was recorded so Matty from The Moms took over.
All jokes aside, these guys are just getting to their prime as a band and it’s the perfect time to get into them. Don’t say I didn’t warn you about MakeWar.