Champions at Heart is the first new material from Down By Law in nearly a decade, but holy crap was completely worth the wait! This record is classic and quintessential Down By Law—a powerful mix of melodic hardcore and pop punk with poignant and biting lyrics. Champions at Heart is as good as ‘90s classics like All Scratched Up! and punkrockacademyfightsong, maybe even better. The record ranges from fast melodic punk numbers (“Bullets” and “Rebels & Angels”) to mid-tempo near ballads (“Knock This Town” and “Champions At Heart”), all with the signature Dave Smalley lyrics dealing with freedom, society, and the loners, losers, outcasts, and misfits that make up the underbelly of America. Smalley is a heel of a songwriter and Champions At Heart shows him at the top of his craft (also the band has never sounded so good). This record is a must for any Down By Law, Dag Nasty, and ALL fan.