Underage and Undiscovered Part II: Denver Hardcore Punks Tuck Knee Drop Surprise EP, “The Way Back Up” on 8/21/2019

Photo by Anarchopunk

Release Date: August 21, 2019                                                                  

Format: Digital 

Label: DIY

Location: Lyons, Colorado

Current Lineup: (Per Facebook)

  • Vox – Ellis Ashmore
  • Drums – Harlan Katzman
  • Guitar – River Ashmore 
  • Bass – Sam Rupsa

Favorite Tracks: The Way Back Up, Foundation, Bust It, U.S Nothing, and Wolfpack

Sounds Like: Black Flag, Minor Threat, Strung Out, Circle Jerks, and the Cro-Mags


Back in February 2019, CPRA and Just Miggy partnered up to bring All Ages Shows downtown Denver. These amazing shows are called The Kids Are Alright At Goosetown Tavern. The first Kid’s show was an absolute riot. I was blown away by all the acts. In fact one band, Tuck Knee, struck a personal chord with me. I would later pen this review here, https://coloradopunkrockarmy.com/tag/tuck-knee/

Their breakout EP, “Can’t Stand For It”, wasn’t compiled just yet, so I listened single by single for my review. I probably listened to this album at least 3-4 days a week. One thought still hits me as I listen to their latest release, “The Way Back Up”. “These kids are kids. Yet they play and write music with the heart of a band that has years in the industry”. All members are under 21, but you can’t tell by listening. 

So let’s check out their 2nd EP release. I’ll be straight up honest here. Second releases sometimes scare me. I’m always worried that I won’t like it. Not that there’s been that many secondary releases that have sucked, but there’s been enough. How is “The Way Back Up”?

The title track takes the name of the EP. River and Sam kick off the track on guitar and bass, while Harlan’s drums build the rise. As Ellis joins in on vocals the combination starts a meteoric rise. This song is fast angry and loud! 

“I’ve got an edge over people like you, 
Drag me down on the way back up. 
I’ve got an edge over people like you, 
Brainwashed youth I’ve had enough
The way back up”


Tuck Knee – “The Way Back Up” 2019

The next track, “Foundation” comes screaming in with a powerful hard edge and clocks in at 42 seconds. I think it was Lala who once said, “All my favorite songs are less than 2 minutes long”. Damn she sure was right! “Jawin” follows and continues the insane upbeat progression. Harlan’s drums are incredible while River smashes on guitar. 

Photo by Anarchopunk

Is Tuck Knee a reincarnate of all my favorite hardcore bands? The next track is “Bust It”. This track encapsulates the bands belief in living a straight edge. It’s short, fun and pogo friendly. Up next is by far my favorite track on the EP, “U.S Nothing”. This track uses some of the words from the USMC, “Rifleman’s Creed” which also appeared in the movie, Full Metal Jacket

The drums set up an almost military like drum corps while Rupa’s bass line bring the emotion. Elli’s spoken word at the intro, provides the background setting and template. While I understand the “Rifleman’s Creed” was supposed to help soldiers distinguish military from civilian life. 

“Fighting a war far from won,

Tell me I got to kill Someone,

Iraq, Cuba, Vietnam these are wars never won,

Military graves I’m not alone,

Now I don’t even want to go home!”  

Tuck Knee “The U.S. Of Nothing” 2019

The words in this day and age, sound like brainwash dribble. In the US we have Proud Boys (Many whom have never served), holding guns at protests like morons manipulated by a hateful dictator. Do they chant this while preparing to intimidate others? The mere thought is scary.

“Wolfpack” is the last track on the EP. This track is written for the united angry youth. I’m almost 42 years old, but still want to join the wolf pack. In reflection, “Tuck Knee’s, “The Way Back Up” is an avalanche of hardcore punk. This release shows the band confidence is rising and they cannot and will not be stopped. I’m telling you get in on the ground floor now! You can pick up the record here, https://tuckkneeband.bandcamp.com/

Photo by Anarchopunk

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