Usually there are too many review requests in my mailbox and yeah, I’m really happy there are hundreds of DIY bands from all over the world who are looking for a little press coverage about their demo or a new self-released EP. But how to satisfy anyone? I guess a good idea is to make a post like this one at the end of each month where I can write a few words about all these demos and basement recordings that are too short, low-fi, a pain in the ass to write more than a sentence worth of a reviewing space or just a piece of crap that doesn’t deserve much of attention at all. So here’s my selection for January 2016, most of the records date from last year.
Svordom – Förstörd Värld
Förstörd Värld (Ruined World) is the second EP of this hardcore punk from Turku, Finland. They worship the classical Finnish hardcore punk style (Rattus, Kaaos, Riistetyt) and inject it with some crucial metallic riffs and d-beat drumming. You can hear crust, sludge, raw scandinavian thrash and it all sounds good. I’m usually very positive about hardcore punk and crust bands coming from Finland and this record is no exception.
Dronez – Corporate Funded Terror
Lo-fi d-beat crust from Philly with a cutting blade of Disclose affluence. This shit is so good. Aaaargh!
Line of Sight – Demo
Probably the best Straight Edge demo I’ve heard in 2015 and the fact that I’ve heard this after watching “Salad Days: A Decade of Punk in Washington, DC (1980-90)” documentary makes it even more awesome. As stated in the movie, it’s important what has come after the glory days of that amazing scene and Line of Sight is one of those bands that makes you feel really great about the state of hardcore and straight edge today. It’s passionate, exciting and positive force coming from Washington, DC, that harkens back to the Golden Era of hardcore.
Apes Brigade – Demo 2015
Interesting post-punk/noise rock from Marseille, France. The band seems largely influenced by the 80’s anarcho/peace-punk and what makes it more interesting is the use of vintage synthesizers. For fans of “Planet of the Apes” and bands like The Cravats or Zoundz.
Cloaca – Demo
That’s some really pissed off thrashing hardcore punk outfit with people from all over the world currently all based in Montreal, Québec. Seven killer songs with incredibly twisted vocals, heavy rolling drums and noisy guitars. 100% punk.
Contrail – Crowded Places
A brand new song from shoegazy/emo-revival band Contrail from Poznań, Poland. In the summer of 2015 they’ve released a promising 3-song demo, and now they are back with a new song called “Crowded Places”. They know how to do their thing quite well and I really like the atmosphere in their music. They also seem like really nice people, their guitar player Bastian is the person behind the awesome LOST iZine.
Tramwreck – TW EP
Now that’s something that grabbed my attention. Five dirty and nihilistic hardcore songs about Satan! All written in Swedish. What more can I say?
lypurá – demo
Lo-fi 4-song demo that sound like all these obscure emo/screamo stuff from late 90’s or early 00’s. Self-recorded and mixed in their rehearsal room but every tune has its place and every tune is hummable to enjoy the whole mood of the record.
Holodomor – Demo 2015
That’s some really upsetting Hellhamer-influenced crust from the Amazonian jungles of Brazil. It starts with a heavy disturbing instrumental intro that would make you stop the record just right there, but if you want to give it a chance you will have to experience the chase between deep growling and voodoo-ritual screaming vocals over heavily distorted metallic crust assault in songs that bear awesome names like “Jesus is a Cunt”, “Lobotomized”, “Kali-Yuga Blues” and “Apocalyptic Hangover”, if you are interested in the lyrics you can find them all on their bandcamp page.
Still Beating – The Writing’s On The Wall EP
Melodic hardcore from Finland, nothing really impressing or interesting but overall a genuine and good attitude.
xTIXONx – OFF (Demo)
That’s some really minimalist vegan straight edge metalcore collaboration between two guys – xALEKSYx and xPAKISSx. The project sounds like they probably have a drum-machine, which is not a bad thing, there are some really good punk bands that use such a thing, although I don’t like this kind of metalcore/beatdown that I could hear on this demo at all. It reminds of the one-man project xThe Battlex from Switzerland that was circulating around the internet some years ago, although you can easily hear the Russian accent of Aleksy and the German accent of Pakiss really well on this release. It doesn’t impress me at all but I was eagerly waiting for the last song on the record, which is a cover of AFI’s “The Leaving Song Pt.2” and yeah, it sounds weird to hear their version. Anyway, I’m not biased in my opinion to not like them, because I’m also Vegan Straight Edge and proud of it, so I like their message and effort. What’s more disturbing is to find that some Bulgarian Neo-Nazis made a video about veganism using TIXON’s song “Eat The Meat (Don’t)” and have uploaded it on a Bulgarian video sharing website, I’m sure the band strongly disagrees to have any connection with such assholes, even if they like their music and promote the vegan way.
Sriba Boys – Водоворот
Thrashcore attack from Russia with lyrics in their native language. Nine songs that doesn’t go beyond the minute-and-a-half mark. I’m not that much impressed of hearing another thrashcore band that sounds like all the rest but you know what to expect from that one. Skateboarding and DIY attitude, shredding guitars and lots of fun, speak Russian or die.