The majority of these records were acquired at This is For You Fest in beautiful Daytona Beach, FL. I went down for a week to visit Annie, and check out the fest. Thanks to everyone who snagged a poster, and thanks to Annie for helping me sell them. Highlights of the fest included: the Blank Stare/Sick Fix/Coke Bust straight edge trifecta, Let Down covering Failure Face w/ Bob singing, the crotch of Nico from Life Trap's pants tearing apart during their first song, seeing old friends/ meeting new friends. See you next year...
Die Kreuzen- Cows and Beer
Classic midwest hardcore finally gets a proper reissue. It's weird to review it since I've had these songs for years, but the quality of this is superior to any bootleg. The cover art and the insert look authentic. Maybe a hybrid of Negative Approach and Void. This 7" is killer; I hope someone re-releases their LP too. This is great for anyone like me who's been listening to Die Kreuzen boots and mp3s, and people wanting to dig deeper into classic early 80's hardcore punk.
Coke Bust- Demo 7"
Coke Bust- Fuck Bar Culture
I wasn't expecting much with a name like Coke Bust, but this is actually pretty damn good. The demo has some youth crew styled sing a longs, but the music is much more fast thrash influenced. The newest record is a lot more like bands like Ripcord and Heresy. They stray from the trappings of the thrash beats that a lot of bands rely on, and make something that's actually interesting. 1/2 of them are in Sick Fix, so if you're into them, I assume you'd like this as well. A lot of the lyrics deal with topics of straight edge, but I think even edge breakers will find something good in this band.
Under Pressure- Habits
I think this is an older release of theirs, but I'd been meaning to check out this band for a while. They have a heaviness to them that's also pretty punk sounding. Think maybe Poison Idea's force crossed with the Wipers' catchy hooks. This is real good, now I'm real bummed that I missed seeing them over the summer. I just bought their new LP, but they've got a bunch of others I need to catch up on.
Homostupids- The Glow
I'm really glad that I gave the Homostupids another chance after that "Brutal Birthday" 7" was kinda a let down. The songs on here have a lot more structure, and have a real blown out garage sound. The sleeve is real minimal also with no credits or track listing anywhere. This shit rules, I need to get their other records now!
Dangerloves- Lipsmart b/w So This is Love
Usually the type of stuff I tend to stay away from, but the record label putting it out (Fashionable Idiots) and the ex-member cred (Career Suicide, Terminal State, Bayonettes, Urban Blight) made me take notice. This is nothing like the typical Toronto old hardcore punk throwback band, this is straight up power-pop. This is really cool, and almost has an old girl group sound (female singer, so yea). If you're into stuff like Knugen Faller or the Unloveables maybe, check it out.
Cult Ritual- s/t
This was a welcome surprise. When I hear that a band has a Black Flag sound, they usually let me down. Cult Ritual however weren't lying. The songs have a real raw later era Flag sound (My War, Slip It in), but is a lot faster and maybe even better. There's a heaviness, but it's still firmly rooted in hardcore punk. I even get a Poison Idea and Siege vibe here.
Bleach Boys- Puke Wave
The Bleach Boys play instrumental surf punk. Sounds cool right? The songs sound like Agent Orange and JFA, but have no lyrics. I don't know if I'd prefer if they weren't instrumental, but this is pretty cool. The production is real fuzzy, and soaked in reverb. I'd love to hear them use a hollow body guitar next time.
Surroundings- Monuments in Ruins
I've seen these guys a few times, and thought they were cool. They have a similar heavy vibe that Pulling Teeth have that's metal w/ punk leanings. I can hear a heavy His Hero is Gone influence here, but with some slow moshy parts.
Republicorpse- To The Dome
Republicorpse play a hardcore/grindcore style. It's pretty fast and heavy, but not really my thing. It's not bad at all, but after going through a huge stack of recent purchases, it doesn't stand out. It does have a cool screened cover, and come w/ a CDr of the 7" (which is nice of them).
Disclose/ Framtid- Chainsawsplit '04
Apparently I snagged the last copy of this bad boy. This is some raw distorted Japanese D-Beat. Obviously you know Disclose, who are probably one of the best Discharge rip offs out there. Framtid is somewhat new, but probably one of the better new Japanese bands I've heard. The vocals are real harsh, and the music's raw. Not for the weak.
A.N.S./ Seasick- Billy in a Bearsuit
I thought this record would be a bit off balance, but it actually flows pretty well together. ANS's recent releases have been reflecting a heavier later era black flag sound, as opposed to the fast skate thrash they did before. Seasick's side sounds a lot more raw (which is a good thing), and gives their songs a lot more bite than on their previous record, "Awakenings." I wish the lyrics sheet wasn't handwritten, so it would be somewhat legible. On as side note, the 7" comes w/ a coupon for a free digital download of the record. A pretty cool idea that I hope will catch on.
Shitstorm/ the Gentle Art of Chokin
Both play what I guess would be described as Grindcore. Real fast and heavy with metallic parts. I'm not too wild about the genre itself, but I think Shitstorm was the standout of the 2 bands.
No Thanks- Are You Ready to Die?
About fucking time! Absolutely classic early 80's NYHC finally gets a real reissue. This contains their 7", demo and a live set. No Thanks was a hardcore band that was from the time period before shitty bands like the Cro Mags, later era Agnostic Front and tough guy garbage dominated the NY scene. Female fronted raw fast punk that needs to be heard. BUY THIS!
Out Cold- Goodbye Cruel World
This came out a while ago, but I picked it up recently. Out Cold has been around for a long time, and unlike most hardcore bands that stick around for a while, they still have yet to release a bad album. I would even be so bold as to say this is one of their best. They keep to the sound of bands from the 90's that were heavily influenced by the early 80's hardcore sound, similar to Voorhees and Fit For Abuse, except they kept at it. They've even got a few new records coming soon; hope they never stop.
Pulling Teeth- Martyr Immortal
On Pulling Teeth's newest record, they keep close in line to their previous record, "Vicious Skin," down to the recording quality and even the artwork. What I've always liked about Pulling Teeth is that the music is heavy, but the vocals don't have that Cookie Monster growl to them. If you're not familiar with them, they've got a heavy Left For Dead influence (obviously since they're named after one of their songs), of metallic soaked hardcore. Where the majority of that genre fails, Pullign Teeth stick to short songs (all songs under 3 minutes, most barely 2) and to the point lyrics. They're definitely one of those bands that can appeal to various crowds, and tour all the fucking time. Keep it up.
A.N.S.- The Process of Stoking Out
Since the last LP, ANS has moved away from the Nardcore worship to later era Flag worship. Still has longish (for a punk band) songs with leads. I guess now the leads are less surfy and more 70's rock. Does that make sense? probably not. Either way, it's still thrashy as hell, but the sound's beefed up a bit.
Weekend Nachos- Punish and Destroy
Better than you'd assume a band called "Weekend Nachos" would be. Weekend Nachos almost sound like a band name that a ska band in high school would haven. Luckily, they sound nothing like that. They play some heavy punishing hardcore in the same style as Neanderthal or Lack of Interest. Real heavy, but not metallic. Recorded as a 2 piece, but I think they're a full band now.
Get Rad- Say Fuck No To Rules, Man
Despite the silly name, silly cover art and silly title; this record's actually not too shabby. The music structure is pretty youth crew posi-core sounding, but the playing style is distorted and fast. I can see these guys appealing to a crowd at a Modern Life Is War show, as well as a Municipal Waste/Rambo type crowd. Surprisingly enjoyable I would say...
Ruiner- Prepare to be Let Down
Ruiner's long awaited follow up to their 7" from 2005. Understandably it sounds a little different, due to 2 years of constant touring and a drummer change. The music is a bit heavier, and the production is pretty clean, but heavy at the same time. Ruiner's got that modern melodic hardcore sound down. Normally I hate that sound, but Ruiner plays it so damn tight that it rules.
In Defence- Don't Know How to Break Dance
I actually like this more than their GNRP split. Basically it sounds like thrashy hardcore dudes playing music that's more like the early Rev catalog. There's no lyrics included, but they don't seem very serious. The music on the other hand has some serious late 80's style mosh parts. Definitely seems to straddle the line between 80's sXe hardcore and early 00's thrash.
Flash Attacks- Pray for Death
This was recorded before their 7" that I reviewed recently, despite being released after it. This was previously only a CDr demo, but was recently pressed of CD and LP by the band. This is much more straight up crust core sounding than their 7", and doesn't have as many heavy Sabbath-y parts. My crust knowledge is limited, so I won't try to compare it to any bands, and just say it's fucking punk rock man.
Killing the Dream- In Place, Apart
I wasn't too into this band, not that it's not good- just not my style. They play modern/melodic hardcore not unlike Modern Life is War or Ruiner. The cover art is really impressive though.
These guys got their demo in just under the wire to make my top 5 demos of '07, but I didn't get a chance to review it yet. Hot Damn, these Toronto dudes play the 80's throwback hardcore thing a lot better than some of their fellow Canadians. Their sound is much more along the lines of Jerry's Kids. These 5 songs leave you wanting 5 more. The production's real raw, like real hardcore should sound. Keep an eye on this band!
This is Vile Nation's 2nd demo, which will most likely be their new 7". They've come a long way since their last demo, and have contained the chaotic sound they had before. This reminds me of the Neos with the crazed drums, and fast riffs. They share a guitarist w/ Life Trap, which I only mention to motivate people to check them out.
I reviewed their 7" above, but the demo is real cool too. Pretty much the same sound, but more raw and wild. They do an awesome cover of "Nausea" by X that I like more than the original (call me crazy). the B side is a long dirge, similar the the B side of the Siege LP. It's got sound samples and violins and shit, but it's real good.
This is the tape version of their new 7", which seemed to sell out fast at the fest. They play some real heavy slow hardcore, that's kind of a mix between heavy power violence and Black Sabbath. Pretty good but has some metal parts that don't really do anything for me.
I Hate This
The first side of this tape contains 4 tracks which will be used on their 2 new split 7"s. The second side is basically a re-pressing of their first demo. Since then they've added a bass player, which I think really rounds out the sound well. Their sound is similar to Sick Fix with the screaming female vocals, but the music is a lot more fast and thrashy.
*I'm really stoked that I got a lot of cassette tapes, some people still enjoy this obsolete format*