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Detroit, Michigan, United States
I'm a punk rock guru from Detroit. Part skinhead, part crusty, part metalhead, part hardcore kid, part party kid, 100% punk rocker.

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Assembly of Extinction- Feast or Famine/ Social Outcast split LP review

Assembly of Extinction- Feast or Famine/ Social Outcast split LP review

Old-school crust-influenced hardcore, B-sided with cacophonous street punk crust. The only unifying things between the two sides of this album are that both bands were from Detroit (both are defunct now) and both bands have dual-vocal 90s crust influence in their respective sounds. Both bands had a purpose in their time and still have one today, although their purpose today is more historical, as opposed to their original state, which was restorational. The first bands described above, Social Outcast, was a Detroit-based band in the vein of a welding between Discharge and Conflict. They brought a unique anarcho-punk sound to the Michigan punk scene, and this set of songs was their finest, albeit final, release. The second band described, Feast or Famine, was a bring-it-back kind of band, sporting studs and spikes to compliment the dual-vocal cacophonous crust music. Today, the record seems historical, a record of an era once here, now nowhere. One question I must ask is…, “Can we please go back to that era?”

The first side of this LP consists of nine really fucking loud crust songs by Feast or Famine. I’ve mentioned before the extremities of the wall of sound theory in music being tested, and this band really pushed that theory as far as it would go, straying from pungent, angry punk to putrid, permeated low-tuned screams and screeches. Some of the songs are great, others are rather irritating. However, given the context of the music world at the time of the band, the extremes of the music are excusable. In the late 90s to early 00s, punk seemed to go a bit soft and flaccid, with the likes of Green Day, Blink 182, and Lookout! Records pop punk leading the way in popularity, capitulating the rage and unique identity in past years’ punk. Feast or Famine was the reaction to this, and these nine songs knifed this lovey-dovey nasal-driven bullshit and wounded its high popularity. This band, in a way, brought punk back, and even though the noise sometimes screeches against my ears with wall-of-sound crust punk, I’d rather listen to a man screech about his studs and spikes rather than endure another nasally singer-guitarist whine about how he’s in love, because nobody cared when his band’s first album came out, either.

Social Outcast’s side has much to say, but I have few words. This sonic boom sound is sincere in delivery and nigh perfect in dominant force. Dual vocal hardcore with crust influence, bellowing for bombs to stop dropping, this band has everything a band needs: Clear, angry vocals, buzzsaw guitars, a punishing rhythm section, and it pushes the envelope of the system lyrically. Although the songs don’t perfectly encapsulate my description, they are about as close as one can get to fulfilling the Eightfold Path of Punk. I believe my point has been made.

Although both bands no longer function actively, Social Outcast may see a discography release in the future, and Feast or Famine took hardcore back from the bowl-haired emo fucks and the pathetic pansies of pop punk. This album did enough for me philosophically and musically, and both serve as a personal influence to my music and print writing; honorable and deserving of a listen, to say the least.

-Aunty Social

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