Monday, June 28, 2010

Failures - EP

So Failures is playing a few live shows in July, so I figured why not toss this one up? A four song exercise in beating instruments to death, Failures delivers this deliciously noisy EP through the unstoppable Painkiller Records. This is presented on clean black vinyl with textured outer and inner sleeves, along with art and lyrics. Very slick.

For those familiar with their LP, this pretty much takes the baton from the last record, emitting a brutal sonic assault capable of derailing a freight train. Uncontrollably fast, undeniably harsh, and amazingly enjoyable, Failures finish about as quickly as they start, bowing out after an abrasive four minute EP. McCoy's vocals will undoubtedly annoy some people, as his higher pitched yelps grate upon the ears, but if you ever listened to Charles Bronson or any of his other projects, you already know what to expect.

The chord changes occur at almost blurring speed, utilizing higher notes while avoiding delving too deep for too long, which aids in the uneasiness that sets in while listening to Failures. I can imagine the drummer's arms practically falling off after recording this, as the fanatical fashion used in the guitar playing translates right into the percussion. Lighting fast fills bridge the gaps between even faster beats, as they maniacally sail right off a cliff when the band finally ceases their attack with "Dovetail."

If you haven't heard or picked  this one up yet, definitely give it a shot. While the complete frantic craziness of their playing style might turn some people off, this is still a well done, incredibly fast hardcore record. Be on the look out for upcoming appearances in Pittsburgh, Chicago, Indianapolis, and NYC from July 8-11. Copies on black vinyl are still available from Painkiller Records, so sell one of those crappy cassette tapes you never listen to and buy one today.

Painkiller Records

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Upcoming Barbary Noise

Yet anther great time for the whole family at The Barbary in Philly. It might be on a Wednesday night in July, but for 10 bucks, it's tough to track down a better line up in the area. This one kicks off at 7 PM and each band rips it, so don't show up 2 hours late because you "only like" Mammoth Grinder.

Mammoth Grinder - Austin, Texas. Bang your head.
Magrudergrind - Blazing fast DC mayhem.
Lewd Acts - West coast hardcore punk on DWI.
Coke Bust - Rip roaring DC straightedge.
Deathbeds - Crushing Philly locals.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Merchandise - EP

This was originally released a while ago, but considering there's a new LP in the works from these guys, it seems appropriate to post it now. From the ever elusive Cult Maternal group, and released by Drugged Conscience Records, Merchandise's tape EP is a versatile, experimental, adventurous take on indie rock and post punk. You could probably toss in a few other subjective genre names in there too if you'd like, just as long as you understand this isn't a Cult Ritual rehash. Fuzzy, distorted, and nerve-wracking at times, this has the potential to soothe and disturb listeners simultaneously.

Blue pro tapes with double sided silkscreen covers make this a visually appealing release, with quirky puke green and blue artwork that matches the cassette almost perfectly. Merchandise churn out 22 minutes worth of music here in five songs (there's six tracks but the first one is just 15 seconds of noise), which dials in at assorted frequencies all across the musical spectrum. Beginning with "I'm Still Right," the band lumbers on for around three minutes at a slow, deliberate pace, before unexpectedly exploding into fast, distorted riffs which completely take you by surprise. 

There's plenty of interesting things happening throughout this tape, which are far better explained by the musical experience than my random statements regurgitated through the medium of a keyboard. Moments of fuzzed out rock blur right into post-hardcore which disintegrates into something possibly less intelligent. Does that even make sense? I hope not. If you aren't already blissfully aware of this tape, please go buy it from Drugged Conscience. Or wait until it's on eBay. Someone wins either way.

Drugged Conscience Records
Cult Maternal

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Flyer of the Year?

Amazing. I seriously hope there's silkscreen prints or at least some sort of photocopy to grab so I can plaster this sucker right onto my wall. If you don't get it, grab your glasses, or turn on a television. Legendary hardcore rages through the New Jersey Shore at the Asbury Lanes on June 18 for a cool $18. Coincidence? Well, no, and actually I wish it was a bit cheaper but I can't really complain.

No introductions or internet chatter needed on this one. However, be sure to check out Staring Problem. Your Friday night is settled.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Floorpunch - Discography

I've been patiently waiting on this one for what feels like forever. Not because Six Feet Under Records takes too long to mail orders out, but because I literally couldn't wait to see how they pulled this one off. Yet again, another lavishly presented release from one of my favorite labels in contemporary hardcore.

Two sexy LPs in brilliant orange color with black and gray splatter and striping, containing timeless New Jersey classics which I've held near and dear for years. A gatefold sleeve with flyers and photos, along with interesting thoughts from some well-known hardcore lifers. The insert embellishes the point further with lyrics and even more writings from everyone including Robby Redcheeks to DFJ.

The discography takes you on a wild chronological ride of Floorpunch's recordings, starting with the influential demo, and wrapping up nicely with Fast Times at the Jersey Shore. While they weren't without controversy at times, this was one of the first bands to spark my interest in hardcore, so each and everyone of these songs remains relevant to me (and so many others) to this day. Blazing fast riffs, unmistakable vocals, thick bass lines, and classic drum beats created a sound which blew away nearly everyone who had the pleasure of hearing them.

Copies are still available from Six Feet Under on clear and gold vinyl for $20 each, so pick up a copy as soon as possible. I considered snapping some more photos, but it truly wouldn't do this the justice it deserves. You know them, you love them. Do it.

Six Feet Under Records

Also, if you live anywhere near the Northeast, missing this would be downright outrageous. Tickets are still available, and I'd be surprised if it didn't sell out. BUST!


Mother of Mercy - You already know. New LP coming on B9.
The Mongoloids - New Jersey.
The Rival Mob - MOB RULES ALL. New EP on SFU soon.
Bitter End - San Antonio, Texas hardcore. Upcoming LP on Deathwish Inc.
Alert - Western Mass straightedge.

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Bloodtype - Bringin' More Stuff Down

Raw style? Check. 80's straightedge hardcore influences? Check. Judge reference? Check. If you're not getting the picture here, Bloodtype is here to rage from your stereo with their latest tape, Bringin' More Stuff Down. A preview release of sorts; this includes two songs from their upcoming EP on Cowabunga Records, one from a split with INJ/SYS (Injustice System), and a Black Flag cover which is sure to disappoint My War B-side worshipers. Red pro tapes, fold out copied j-cards with lyrics, a sticker, and a button round out the package from Bleeding Edges.

Instead of trying to emulate the latest Have Heart or Champion project (thank god), Bloodtype pay assorted homage to the everlasting and important bands of the 80's, fusing fast hardcore with a raspy vocal style that reminds me a little of older Redemption 87. Fast paced, short lived 60 second bursts of furious hardcore lay waste to your stolen 1992 Walkman while Jeff screams in surprisingly audible fashion.

"Dropout" gets things rolling with blurring speed and rapid fire chord changes. Followed by "Not Here to Make Friends," Bloodtype keeps chugging along, treating your ears to a heavy, grooving breakdown to finish the song. An attack on the trivialities of organized religion concludes the original material, as the appropriately dubbed "Saved" blasts at an ideal mid-paced, head banging tempo. If you're as mind numbingly sick of hearing "Rise Above" covered by groups of wide-eyed 14-year-olds as I am, you'll be pleasantly refreshed by the cover of "Drinking and Driving." Although this "went over like a lead balloon" at their last show according to Jeff, so what do I know anyway?

If you were into the demo, Bringin' More Stuff Down is an easy follow up, giving a nice tease of the new material, and with substantially better recording quality. Look for the upcoming 7" from Cowabunga records, and check these dudes out at an undisclosed, dingy New Brunswick, NJ basement soon. There's also a cinder block hurling tour scheduled for the end of July with Tampa, FL ragers, INJ/SYS, so keep your eyes peeled. This is already sold out from Bleeding Edges, but copies should filter through some distros shortly to satisfy the low-fi cassette collecting enthusiasts. 

Bloodtype MySpace
Bleeding Edges

Friday, June 11, 2010

Mandatory Attendance

YES. One of my favorite straightedge bands of all time, One Up is reuniting as a birthday gift to Jeff Lasich. Another fantastic Sunday matinee at The Barbary for some good old fashioned hardcore fun. Toss in NJ's youth crew inspired Outlast, and Wilkes Barre's latest band, Stick Together, and you've got everything you could ask for. All those in town for the Floorpunch show on Saturday, June 26 better stick around for this one, it's gonna be a rager. Check out the band's MySpace pages for some tunes if you're unfortunately unfamiliar.

One Up
Word for Word
Stick Together

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

A Shadow of a Doubt - Demo

Well, Derrick doesn't want to "toot [his] own horn" so I'll pump this one up a bit. Frantic, raging Western Mass hardcore from some dudes who seem to be doing it right. Five songs worth of distorted, crazy music which rampages its way through the cassette while threatening to spin right off the spool.

It's difficult to pin down the assorted influences here, as A Shadow of a Doubt crazily works their way though a particularly noisy brand of hardcore in a shade under 9 minutes. Plenty of squealing guitars, piercing feedback, and violent drumming spew from your stereo during each song, which is interrupted by surprising gaps of calmness in tracks like "What a Virtue, Forgiveness."

They're definitely not trying to be the latest wierdo artsy pseudo-hardcore emulation, which excites me for further possible releases. As far as demos go, this is definitely worth a few minutes of your precious time. Picture, download, and pretty much everything all taken from his Well Fed blog so please check it out. Demos are available for $3, so if you're into it, shoot an email over and pick up a copy. These are limited to 100, so I doubt it'll last. SUPPORT.

A Shadow of a Doubt 
Well Fed Blog

Silkscreened Hardcore

Jealousy of Western Massachusetts? Well, maybe a little bit. Either way, these delicious screen prints from Clean Plate are enough to make even the most obnoxious mysterious hardcore fan wince. Brilliant colors on different mediums detail the devastating performances from bands such as California Love, Mind Eraser, Cult Ritual, Aerosols, Waste Management, Failures, Nazi Dust, Slave Scene, and many others.

Check out the webstore to pick these up for near ridiculously cheap prices. Seriously, at $3 each, the posters are cheaper than the shipping. Feel free to decorate your mom's basement whilst spinning the Slave Scene demo at speeds it wasn't meant to be played at. Cassettes not included. Rage.

Clean Plate Records

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Capitalist Casualties/Lack of Interest Split

50th post, exciting! Well, sort of. Up next is a white knuckled split EP from two powerviolence favorites, Capitalist Casualties and Lack of Interest. Seven songs worth of roaring music, continuing in the fashion which we've come to love and know from these two. This is released by Six Weeks Records, included with the latest issue of Short, Fast and Loud, which is an absolute must have. I picked this up at their show in Philly, which came with reversed labels, limited to 100. Some sort of limited tour press to excite collectors like myself.

Blasting off at jet fueled speeds, Capitalist Casualties begin their portion of the split with painfully fast drumming, raging guitars, and Shawn's ever so familiar vocals. The first track, "Tontine" is probably my favorite, sounding almost as if they haven't missed a beat from their last recordings. "Copper Green" is almost uncomfortably slow at points, which seems to drone on a bit with repetitious riffs. The final song, "Indelible Marks" teases you, pretending to be another lumbering track, but furiously explodes into another 90 second hardcore burst. There's plenty of politically motivated lyrics, but what else would we expect from these hardcore lifers?

Lack of Interest play an abrasive, jerking form of music, topped off with incredibly gruff vocals which resemble a pitbull's bark. Each song is around 30 seconds long, wasting no time whatsoever as each one abruptly cuts out just as swiftly as it began, threatening to give you whiplash before their side is finished. Songs about war, society and other semi-"run of the mill" topics are covered in their lyrics, but that's really nothing new. "Immoral" is my choice pick, with an especially viscous breakdown riff during the last 10 seconds.

As if you needed another reason to pick this up, the 23rd issue of Short, Fast and Loud is worth the $7 alone. Interviews, reviews, top ten lists, columns, pictures, and nearly anything else you can think of is included. Obviously this isn't as memorable or powerful as Subdivisions in Ruin but it's better than most efforts from older bands who release albums after 20 years or so in existence. Seriously, BUY THIS.

Buy from Six Weeks Records
Buy from Tank Crimes
Capitalist Casualties MySpace
Lack of Interest MySpace

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Homestretch - Comatose EP

Another fine cassette release from Drugged Conscience Records out of Naples, Florida. Homestretch demonstrate a well tuned brand of dark, heavy hardcore with some flairs of metallic influences weaved throughout their songs. Comatose features four songs for your listening displeasure, laden with socio-poli-awareness inspired lyrics. White pro tapes, lyric sheet with song explanations and a hand numbered, silkscreened obi strip are all included for upper echelon music collector nerdery (which I love.)

It's nearly impossible for me to select a favorite on Comatose, as each song seems to attempt to one up the previous one, raging forward with unstoppable intensity. Brooding riffage tuned dangerously low with high distortion effectively numbs your ears, while the vocals spit furious, yet inspired lyrics. This isn't another "mysterious" hardcore band, nor is it another NYHC or straightedge revival project. Homestretch is more on the Converge, Rise and Fall, or The Carrier end of the spectrum, with a little Ringworm driven straight through the heart for good measure.

Perhaps most impressive is the intelligent, creative lyrics, as each song tackles a completely different topic. "Sleight of Hand" details the miserable state of American pop culture, mindless television programming, and the diluted reality which pollutes each and every day. "Visiting Hours" seems to be a highly personal song about the corrupted, money thirsty medical injury, which treats insurance policies, rather than the people who struggle against disease and infection. Homestretch gives us another track on the pitfalls of organized religion during "Eye of the Needle." Comatose meets its demise during "How the Other Half Dies," which speaks to the overblown, obsessive compulsive fascination with money and finances which forces people to work jobs they despise, so they can create a lifestyle which looks like some faux reality out of a magazine.

Blasting guitars, clean recording, and great lyrical content easily makes Comatose a decent listen. The somewhat obvious Converge influences might annoy some people, while exciting others (such as myself). There's only a few copies left from Drugged Conscience, so if you like the download BUY THE CASSETTE.

Homestretch MySpace
Drugged Conscience Records