Friday, December 10, 2010

Wiccans - Teenage Cults

Fresh in, we have a slab of sweet black wax from Pass Judgement Records, containing four filthy songs from Denton, Texas' Wiccans. An intoxicating blend of old school punk rock and Midwestern hardcore, Teenage Cults delivers a nice injection of mid-tempo aggression. Hand stamped labels and black vinyl, housed in a thin inner sleeve completes the packaging on this baby.

Stripped down and relatively simple, Wiccans play a brand of hardcore which isn't afraid to ink songs longer than 45 seconds long, and use a speed other than "blurring" while playing their instruments. Something about them reminds me of UK82 era punk rock bands, a la Special Duties or The Partisans, with a more modern hardcore edge added to similarly dirty, power chord laden riffs. Adam Cahoon's vocals are gruff and abrasive, shouting the lyrics in a manner which is tough to follow even with the lyric sheet, but I'm sure you'll be able to make out enough to understand their general theme.

The best song on the record might be the opener, "Repetition," which utilizes familiar punk rock progressions accentuated by simple, yet catchy lead lines. Wiccans chugs along swiftly through the three minute song, with momentary mid-tempo breaks and plenty of tormented howling from the vocals. Each track maintains it's own memorable characteristics, but remains true to the band's desired style, rendering Teenage Cults a slight cut above some other similar records out there.

There's just something deliciously snotty and nasty about this band, which makes it an entertaining listen from top to bottom. Wiccans can squeeze in with the hordes of other hardcore acts out there, but they tend to hang around the No Class or Male Nurses end of the spectrum rather than Raw Nerve or Natural Law. Copies of the first press out of 300 are still available from Pass Judgement for $4.50, so SUPPORT THE BAND AND LABEL if you like the download.

Wiccans MySpace
Wiccans Blog
Pass Judgement Records