Thursday, January 24, 2013
Deviated Instinct- Liberty Crawls to the Sanctuary of Slaves LP review
Contrary to most crusty albums I listen to, this one starts off kind of slow, almost like a British version of Xibalba. The intro to “Blunt Instrument” is absolutely pounding, almost sounding like a hardcore band. As the song progresses, deep growls are uttered over metallic riffs that ring almost like a cooler, non-hick version of Pantera. Slap a west-coast hardcore band name on this and kids will go nuts- even as Deviated Instinct, it’s killer, and people should mosh to this. “Architect of Misery” is definitely more along traditional crusty lines- galloping riffs, downtuned guitars, and ominous vocals. The slower pace is better for the band, as some of the intensity is much more accented because of it. “Thorn in Your Flesh” has the heavy hardcore feel once again, and despite my constantly comparing this band to modern hardcore band that are really, really heavy, these guys were doing this in the late 80s, so it would be no surprise if Harm’s Way or Xibalba jammed some Deviated Instinct at least once in the band members’ lives. This band puts more energy into the guitars, however; the modern heavy hardcore bands put the oomph of their sound into the drums and the vocals. “Blandscape Slavebait” begins with a splice of an audio snippet that sounds like a busy train or subway station and a distant acoustic guitar, then a melodic guitar strums away before the singer grunts and growls through a mid-tempo punky tune. For the chorus, an alternate vocalist snaps in as well. This song really only has two parts- not a very captivating song, and a confusing one as well. “End Times” has a slightly faster pace and crunchier guitar, almost like the anarcho/ crust version of “Ain’t It Fun”- this was a real punisher. Closing out this crusty record was “Judas Cancer”, a hardcore-sounding song that is not unlike Axegrinder, but actually enjoyable. There are multiple instruments playing their own parts here- I really dug this track.
Not the most explosive release of the year, but a fair LP for the average punk. Crusties will eat this up, hardcore kids will make fun of them for it, and the world spins ‘round. A respectable release- not time wasted.
Bald Pig- demo tape review
Very rough, cacophonous-sounding fast hardcore punk with a higher-pitched, clearer-sounding singer. This demo does not last very long at all- four minutes or so, tops. The lyrics are not the usual sort of hardcore fare, which I can appreciate. “We’re All Racist” is the most indicative of this- very interesting. Undoubtedly a throwback to an old Agnostic Front song and communicating a strong “victim’s revenge” sort of vibe, “Victimizer in Pain”, this is one of the faster songs on the tape. “M.A.D.” is the only slow song on here, a much more mid-tempo beat, but still a crusher. Definitely a demo, but it’s so short that it’s almost impossible to waste one’s time listening to it. Can ya dig it? I can.
Retribution- Consumed 7” review
Upon first glance of this record, the first thing I noticed was the utterly fantastic artwork. That was a great start to jamming out this EP. The record begins with a punishing intro- you can almost sense the pit warming up as the drums smash in the background and the riffs ring out. Then, the intro moves into the song “Diseased and Dead”, which rolls along rather quickly, pummeling with speed and focus from all the members of the band, before the tempo slows and the breakdown (inevitable to all hardcore bands, local and otherwise) begins, as the chorus is shouted out from both singer Kenneth Smith and the various voices in the gang vocals, being appropriate here- this is a crowd favorite, so these are words actually screamed out by fans at shows, which is fitting. Next, “D.R.A.” is a track about a lost friend and the sorrow and regrets that follows with that loss. I didn’t get too into this one, but I can see why this song is important- to both the band and the friends who lost the friend whom the song is about, and I can at least give respect to a band for that. “Consumed” is a metal-tinged hardcore straight-edge jam about, of all things, not being overly occupied with the many vices of “poisons” that lurk in our worlds. This song is a killer jam- it is direct and pointed, rather than most straight edge songs, which usually are metaphorical and somewhat indirect. Concluding this EP is a song called “No More”, about taking back the world from the control of those who do evil to other people, namely killers and rapists. Philosophically, this is right on my level- no moral high ground or being the better man, but instead imposing the suffering that these victimizers have dished out. There is something inexplicably satisfying about bringing that sort of pain back to someone like that. It rings of the Malcolm X idiom “by any means necessary”- when danger lurks around every corner, it is a great deterrent to have when equal pain brought will be received in return.
Not groundbreaking, but the songs are some real damn good hardcore jams, the artwork rules, and this band deserved the work put into this record. Definitely worthwhile, money and time-wise.
Type-3- Corporate Reign demo CD review
Dual vocal punk rock that mixes a lot of oddball influences to have an almost unique blend of sounds to call their own. Mix 90s skate punk, 90s ska-core/ crack rock steady sorts of upbeat yet angry punk, and Fat Wreck-core bands, and you have Type-3. More of a party kind of punk, it is definitely the kind of band that might not fit in on a political straight edge/ vegan bill, although they do absolutely have an anti-authoritarian ring to them. As for instruments, everything sounds pretty tight, balanced, and clear. If you’re into this kind of thing as a general rule (I myself am a big fan of 90s third wave ska and CRS-style bands), this is killer. If not, you might not dig it so much. But these are four high-quality weed-smoking, skateboarding, 40 oz.-guzzling, chill-the-fuck-out punk rock tunes. This demo really needs to be turned into a fucking tape. In 90% of all punks, you’ll enjoy this to some extent, and it will be well worth your time to jam this.
Spit Spewing Snakes- demo tape review
A mix of fastcore a la Disciples of Christ, Positive Noise, and the lot and a bit of the hardcore that the former incarnation of this band (Bearfoot) would play. Very danceable and a bit moshable as well. The lyrics, written by singer Nate, are definitely the high point of the demo- cryptic and general yet surprisingly insightful, not a common theme for most contemporary hardcore. I enjoyed that the most, actually. Still, the music isn’t without its energetic and “punk rock” edge. Two-stepping and push pits (and maybe a little bit of pillow moshing too) would be rampant during an SSS set, and have been as well. Anyone who likes youth crew, laid-back 90s hardcore, and fastcore/ thrashcore bands would be wise to lend an ear to these local guys.