Saturday, March 23, 2013
Now here is a goddamn record, the newest release from Seattle's Nudes and they already have another disc in the works that sounds fucking great. I've been waiting quite a while to get a copy of this. The tracks were the only music in my car for quite some time. The A and B sides were recorded all as one long track. The A side is my favorite for sure, starts off with a menacing dirge that breaks into a tom-roll leading into a blistering ever-soo-Nudes track. It fluctuates but the next track is my favorite on the release, the breaks where the riff plays alone are so damn good. Then comes a final track for the A side that reminds me of something off of the "Used Abused and Unamused EP" (which is definitely a compliment) specifically "Asking Too Much". The B side then starts off with a re-recorded track from the demo and the skin single on the lathe cut. I am so glad the re-recorded that first track and did it some justice, it's one of my favorite Nudes songs. All and all an amazingly good record put out on Canada's own Bedside. Chad just got a Bedside tattoo and he's coming down this week for me to give him a Grimace tattoo; down for life. Pick up a copy while you can, I doubt they'll be around long.
2009 saw the beginning of something beautiful. This first 7" was self released and gives us our first taste of the songwriting formulas that would later become the essence of what we now know as Vacant State. "Tight Grip" and "Bleak" are the usual VS blasts followed by a B side that is quintessentially their sound, a repetitive stomp track and a dirgy ender with delay that sounds quite a bit like "Tailgate". A style of hardcore that could be described as taking the Last Rights 7" too far (or just far enough some might argue) this record is great late 2000s hardcore. Stompy, catchy, and primitive.
Saturday, March 16, 2013
So we got a lot coming at you all. We just mailed the reels to Amos at Bedside for our Flexi and our 7" so be on the lookout for those before summer. We have a total of twelve new tracks for you: The flexi contains Peer Praise, Nihilistic, No Rules, Killing Mind, and Passive Aggressive Violence and the 7" is Adjustment Part II, Who's In Control, Surveilled, Adjustment Part III, Health Sucks, Adult, and Lead. In addition we're heading out for an east coast tour at the beginning of April dates are as follows:
April 1st - Chicago, IL
April 2nd- Cleveland, OH
April 3rd- Philadelphia, PA
April 4th- Pittsburgh, PA
April 5th- New York City
April 6th- Cambridge, MA
April 7th- Boston, MA
April 8th- Long Island
April 9th- New Jersey
April 10th- Richmond, VA
April 11th- Alexandria, VA
April 12th- Damaged City Fest DC
April 13th- Damaged City Fest DC
Hit us up if you want info on venues, are a band that wants to play, etc, support your scene!
For that tour we've made 100 more of those Midwest tour Promo cassettes so if you missed them the first time you get a second chance. I'll let you all know when the records and flexis become available keep checking Bedside records and in the meantime listen to the first track from the flexi "Peer Praise" linked below.
Thursday, March 14, 2013
So this cassette was described to me as 'hardcore for idiots' by Matt, the singer of Condition. It's his other band and it was enough to sell me. The whole tape has a real surfy influence. It starts off with laughing and then vocals kick in screaming like a banshee. This continues throughout with straight forward hardcore blended with some surf. Give it a listen and see if it matches the description.
So I told you I'd tell you more about Ooze. Ooze was described to me by Ralph as the best band in America. They were definitely my favorite band we played with in the Midwest. Ralph said he had pestered them to do let him do any release for them even so far as an LP because they haven't really made any official releases. This band is fucking great. Really great live and the recordings are fierce and crummy, just the way I like them. This band was so good the first thing I did when I got home was make myself a shirt and a tape.
We played with Urban Struggles in Phoenix AZ. Five days prior we played El Paso, TX and Danny showed up to check out White Wards and GAG. He was a cool guy and I was pumped to play with his band on our way back through. When we hit Austin everyone told us this band was crazy and had me believing they were going to burn the garage down we were gonna play in. Needless to say I was stoked. GAG played and our set was pretty nuts. Adam was throwing chains and pulling large, heavy metal contraptions seemingly magicly from areas of the garage that didn't exist. Urban Struggles stepped up to the plate and the first thing that happened was the entire garage filled with smoke and a super loud whistle, sounded like a piccolo pete or something. The garage was then unbearable to be in for the duration of the set. Vincent who seemed like a normal calm guy when meeting him earlier then proceeded to get naked and break a bunch of bottles. He rolled in the glass on the ground until the floor of the garage was covered in blood. Before I knew it the set was over. The tape translates pretty appropriately to how the live set took place. It's recorded on an ipod and is almost indecipherable. All the tracks have no song titles. Good luck listening to this one. Anyhow, I wanted to put it up because their live set was fucking great. Hope to hear more from this band in the future, I've been told I won't.
Here's a short and sweet comp I picked up out of Ralph's distro during New Direction Fest of last year. I picked it up solely for the title because I felt like it had a lot of potential to engage me. Unfortunately the description inside left me wanting more. Don't get me wrong I love the idea and think the release is cool as hell I'm just more critical of it because of it's potential and because I think it's a good thing to release. The write up fell short of speaking to the politics of choosing to abstain from drugs and alcohol in the punk scene which I feel is the crux of the argument. It mostly seems to focus on the fashions and aesthetic of the movement which implies this is what would make straight edge punk, though I fully doubt that was the intention. I don't think there's anything much more punk than saying 'no I won't' to globally marketed addictive tax revenue. Anyway, who cares what you are, give this bad boy a spin. I like that the a and b sides sort of fit each other. Like sounding bands are addressed to each side. The b side is substantially more aggressive sounding, I blame Coke Bust. My favorite track is the Poison Planet track "Mind Racing".
Poison Planet - The Victim
Poison Planet - Mind Racing
Boiling Over - Consume Me
Boiling Over - Trash City
Coke Bust - Under The Streetlights
Coke Bust - No One To Impress
Cold Shoulder - Can't Cheat Death
Cold Shoulder - Ghost Towns
Tuesday, March 12, 2013
Alright here it is, the whole reason we went out to the Midwest. After Kayla booked Poison Planet on New Direction Fest we made some friends who reciprocated our love. Ralph asked us if Adjustment to Society wanted to contribute some tracks on a comp he was doing, at the time called "Welcome to 2012" and we said of course. A delayed release retitled the comp "Welcome to 2013" and had us flying out there for a comp release show and a short Midwest tour. A quick recap: We flew into Minneapolis where it was 20 below and all Austin brought was shorts. After being up all night we finally arrived in Nashville Tennessee and did some exploring which included a visit to Margaritaville. We then played a cool space called the Owl Farm with bands Enough, Vacant Future and our friend's Strangers. This marked the beginning of what would be a beautiful week.
We stayed in Nashville again and made the trek through an ice storm to Indiana. The ice storm had us extremely delayed which caused much conversation and bonding and an almost tragic breakdown due to running out of gas. We then played a show MoMo set up for us which was mostly young kids and college students which ruled. We played with a band that sounded like 'More Beer' era fear. They ruled and I wish I remembered what they were called and that they had music. Interesting fact: drummer was wearing a Champion shirt. We were well fed and taken to stay in a dorm where we met the singer of Menanites whose demo I'll put up later because it's sick. We woke up and were well fed again by MoMo after boot stomping through the College dorm to the cafeteria.
We then continued on to Urbana, Illinois where we played in a basement with Laughboy, Lumpy & The Dumpers (who I wrote about earlier), and Chain's Gang. The show was awesome and down the snow covered streets was a wonderful coop which fed us all well.
The next day was a busy two show day. We glued some comps together which are all printed on the back of Razorfade and Poison Planet LP jackets which causes the color variation between the brown and white ones. The preshow for the comp release ruled and included Strangers, Distract, Lumpy & The Dumpers, Bored Straight, and Sucked Dry. The preshow was insane. Tons of Chicago and Indiana punks packed in a basement going completely insane the whole time. The next show was even more crazy, it was held in a sick warehouse and featured Ooze, Skrapyard, Adjustment to Society, Thee Nodes, Tenement, and Culo. Ooze is my new favorite band which I will touch on in a post sometime soon. Skrapyard ruled and I put up their tape, Thee Nodes and Tenement were great, and Culo was insane. i had never seen or heard that band and I was impressed. I knew they were notorious but didn't realize they were so young.
We got up early to go steal weapons and leather gloves and ate the most amazing food ever at a place called Quesadilla. I got vegan pastor and it blew my mind. Next we made the sad trip to Milwaukee where we ended up doing some late night sledding and playing a show in a basement where wrestling ensued afterward. This was where the trip was broken in for all of us so it was really sad to know it was our last show together. The show was great and we all crashed at Eric's from Tenement and Bored Straight who gave us a wonderful tour of Milwaukee the next morning. We burned our day away and had to take a sad plane trip home.
But enough about the trip lets hear about the comp. Welcome to 2013 is my favorite musical format... an LP compilation. Half of the bands I enjoy listening to have found their way to my ears through hardcore punk comps so it was an honor to be able to have tracks on such a sick one. The A side kicks it off with Handartzako Hondakinak who kill it. There is a sick eerie intro that then blitzes into raging hardcore. The song falls apart then comes back together to burn out your ear drums. The second track gets real wild and is reminiscent of bands like Terveet Kadet. Also the lyrical explications in the booklet are great. The next two tracks are by Chicago's Culo and they are equally ragers. The vocals on these tracks are so good. 'I Wanna Be A Bigshot' is a great track. The next three tracks are us and rule of course. We recorded all new songs with someone from Colter's work for the comp but didn't like how they came out so we ended up just using two tape tracks and one of the new tracks that was short enough to not show that the recordings sucked (that's why it sounds so different from the other two). Either way I couldn't think of a better way to appear on this comp than the way we did. It's how we do things. Big Crux then really switches it up to some funk influenced stuff that's reminiscent to Big Boys, Minutemen and at times Husker Du. Ooze then comes in to kill it. I remember them playing this song and thinking it was so sick. Haute Couture bursts onto the scene a'la Motorhead and proves to be one of the sickest bands on the disc. The Inservibles tracks are dirty and gross sounding, a Mexican Germs with delay. Their first track has some stop and go in the middle that's really sick and the second track almost reminds me of some street punk stuff. Tenement's track to close off the a side is really appropriate. It's soft and introspective and although I'm usually put off to that it's a welcome breath of fresh air in its place on the comp. I really like the chorus-y vocals on the outro. It's a great song. Flip the disc and you're on to the B side. Aspirina Infantil kick it off with feedback, foreboding drums and screams over an ominous sound clip. On a track called Police and City it seems very appropriate from this hardcore band from Spain. They sound like a cleaner Willful Neglect. Negative Degree from Colorado are next. These guys are really good. The first track is kinda melodic and has a really creative bridge. 'FOF' sounds like a straight up mash up of Negative Approaches 'Whatever I Do' and 'Lead Song'. Brown Sugar is up to plate and of course the track is nuts as always. I love this band. It's short and sweet and reminds me of something you'd hear off a mystic comp from the eighties. There's a melody of burps, inhales, and other mouth sounds at the end of the track. Porkeria then serves us some pounding Hispanic hardcore from Southern Texas. Intense stuff. Then comes NASA Space Universe who White Wards and GAG got to play with in Bakersfield where the bassist jumped into my drum set they were borrowing. Pretty bummed but everything got worked out. The first song is a short fast blast and the second track captures the sound they're known for, similar to Die Kreuzen. Love the bends in that song. Good Throb serves up a really catchy kbd style punk track then drops the ball on the second track. Bored Straight offers up two super short bursts that blend into one another. Don't blink or you'll miss it. Broken Prayer really threw me for a loop. Some crazy synth punk that I think I really like. It's really dynamic and breaks up the record really well. Catchy and sticks in your head. The last two tracks send the comp out screaming with Thee Nodes. These guys had a super wild live performance where they all dressed up crazy and their insert reads 'long live the freaky punks'. These ideals are communicated in the sound of their music. Long story short this comp rules and you need to download it and buy it from Ralph. To generate some more incentive to purchase it I left out all the artwork in the inserts from the bands except for ours and the well written prose to introduce the record. Also has a spread of Ben Trogden's art! Enjoy and pick it up from Not Normal.
I'm kicking myself for the time I slept on this band because it's so god damn good. The drummer Greg contacted me and I sent him some Gag, ATSX, and Grimace stuff. He returned the favor with some Violent Future releases which included the demo on a seven inch. This release seems to pick up right where fellow Toronto band Urban Blight left off and I was quite the fan of that band. The record is like a time capsule, the songs are simple and primitive in all the best ways possible harkening back to better times in music. Crummy leads, simplistic drumming, and barked vocals are the perfect blend for a great demo. Listen to "Goon Life" and you'll be hooked. Do yourself a favor and download it.
To describe and label in an uncreative way La Misma is a New York based all female hardcore punk band that belts out all the vocals in Portuguese. Nay gave me a copy of this cassette when she came through with Sad Boys (which Gag played at the Track House). I half expected it to be similar to the last band she was in Eunuch but it was much different. The whole tape has a morosely cheerful vibe to it the whole way through, transitioning seamlessly from dark dirgy riffs to cheerful, catchy choruses accompanied by very poetic lyrics. The first track is bass driven and sets the tone for the whole cassette. The music is all its own, taking bits and pieces you may have heard in other tunes and absorbing it into their sound. The aforementioned sound is lo fidelity, delayed vocals and the sad/happy key changes I mentioned earlier. Every track blasts straight into the meat of the song and has washed out leads, catchy choruses and everything else you'd want from punk anthems. The second track showcases the more dark dirgy side of their sound and the third track "Veu De Liberdade" is probably my favorite track because of the cuts and the chord progression in the chorus. The fourth track then returns to the upbeat cheerful feel before moving to the most dynamic song on the tape "Fado". I love the gallop in that song. The last track starts as a washy blast and ends as it starts, in a burst of energy. All the lyrics are accompanied by translations. I really enjoyed this cassette and have been flipping it over and over. I'm hoping Adjustment gets to play with them when we get to New York next month.
Thursday, March 7, 2013
This tape is sick! I picked it up at Blackwater in Portland because I remembered Colter saying it was sick and that we were playing with them in April in DC. The band is no nonsense and hard as nails. Lyrics are goofy and gnarly, stomping posers and whatnot. Vocal delivery is similar to early Nausea and Meanstreak; like I said, hard as nails. You'd expect an Outburst comparison but aside from having a track called Hard Way, lyrical content, and the name there isn't too much musical similarity. There's a straight up Urban Blight riff in the third track I think it is. This is a really good four song tape. Check it out. I'm pumped to play with them.
Here's another review of a cassette I got mailed to me, I love getting new music in the mail so keep sending shit my way anyone interested. I was really thrown for a loop with this one. The aesthetic and music points to surfy punk but I get a lot of post-punk influence out of it. Missing Person starts their tape off with "Backyard" which is the track that most gives me an "eerie" post punk vibe, almost goth sounding. This could be blamed on the lo fidelity of the recordings but that reverb laden noodling and vocals calls for some surf. "Bikini" then begins the tape descent into obscure sounds followed up by "It's Too Late" by far the craziest track on the tape. The vocals over this track are shouted, steering away from the smooth delivery of the first two tracks and it all just falls apart to end it. "Lost In the Woods" and "Surfer's Ear" pick up the tempo again and return to that smooth, reverb laden vocal delivery. Reminiscent maybe of Rebel Truth (charred remains era) and Agent Orange sorts of tracks but more dischordant. I really like the build up transition between these two tracks. "Low Tide" powers into a short thirty second blast of a song with shouted vocals, breaking up the symmetry of the tape. "Small Hands" finishes it all off with the usual formula and some noodly breaks... the storm after the calm. I really like how the tracks progress on the tape, a general sound is accomplished but it's broken up in such a way that it doesn't get boring. As this was mailed into me I only had the chance to listen to it a few times before I ripped it but I like what I hear. That first track is a real hook. Thanks for the surprise mail and if anyone ever wants their demos reviewed, email me and send em' my way!
Here's another fantastic band we had the pleasure of playing with in Chicago. Our dear friend Tyler plays drums in this band, little did I realize how awesome this band really was until getting to see them play. I had heard them once before when they started because of their name being really similar to Trainyard but didn't pay much attention... that was my first mistake. Now I'm kicking myself I didn't get that first tape. This is some really great stuff. Recording quality is as abrasive as the vocals; perfect in my eyes. "Die To Be Free" is my stand out track, the way it kicks in after that intro gets my blood boiling. Hardcore done right, great stuff, pumped to hear more in the future.