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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.
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Saturday, October 31, 2015

Shitstorm- Paranoid Existence CD review

Shitstorm- Paranoid Existence CD review
Fast, heavy, short, and brutal- what else could you want out of a grind band?  I am generally not a big fan of grindcore, but this has a very Lack Of Interest/Neanderthal/west coast powerviolence feel to it, and I like that a lot.  The downtuned guitars coupled with the blastbeats and misanthropic lyrics/vocals will tear you up- twenty-seven songs in sixteen minutes.  This should remind you of what the Circle Jerks were if they tuned down and (somehow) sped up.  Miami is known to have hurricanes from time to time, but this is a Shitstorm, and it leaves a trail of destruction just the same.

-Aunty Social

Thursday, October 29, 2015

Detain- State of Emergency 7" review

Detain- State of Emergency 7” review
Simple knuckle-dragging hardcore with riffs for days; take Madball, mix it up with modern hardcore/metalcore, and you’ve got Detain.  Mid-tempo heavy beat, gruff vocals, simple lyrics, well-recorded; everything about this EP screams simple- music for lifting weights, drinking heavily, fighting (although it isn’t as good as Neanderthal’s Fighting Music), fucking (if you can find a mutant willing to do so), or taking out your anger on a bad day.  Make no mistake, Detain is among the best at what they do- if you want to sweat in any way, Detain is for you.  Just bear in mind that it resonates much more with the id rather than the ego or superego.  It’s nothing new, just something good.

-Aunty Social

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Detest- demo 2015 review

Detest- Demo 2015 review
This is pure death metal hardcore- equal parts Bolt Thrower and Disembodied, downtuned all the way through.  Vocals bark and grunt along with the crushing mid-tempo riffs and the crashing drums.  This goes back and forth between being a hardcore band with death metal riffs and a death metal band with hardcore breakdowns- ultimately, it doesn’t matter much, because it’s good either way.  Headbang or spinkick, this is for you.

-Aunty Social

Sunday, October 25, 2015

Violent Reaction- City Streets LP review

Violent Reaction- City Streets LP review
Harder than NAILS and more straight edge than Project X, Violent Reaction’s debut LP is a hard-hitting hardcore punk record that also happens to be catchy at points, much like the early 80s.  Burly, beefy, and deep-throated vocals are coupled with powerful guitars, bouncing bass lines, and dead-on drumming to make this one-man project a reality of a band- it’s hard to believe that one guy could be so fucking on point with all the instruments, not to mentions the vocals, the lyrics, and the genuineness of character, he (Tom Pimlott) is.  There’s no other way to describe this than pissed-off hardcore punk- put it in any subgenre you like (and I tried to, too), it’s the shit.  Where you’re punching a hole in the wall at a show or at home, or better yet, shouting the words to these catchy tunes at a show, at home, or in your car (my personal favorite) you will be moving.  Packaging and design work is superb- Painkiller is on top with good records right now, and this is one of their best.  The best of the best of the best, sir, uh… with honors.

-Aunty Social

Friday, October 23, 2015

Demolition- World Gone Mad 7" review

Demolition- World Gone Mad 7” review
It’s cliché to say the demo is better than the EP/LP, but here it rings true.  The raw production compared to the slick one on this is the difference.  This IS a very clean sounding hardcore record; the songs all have distinct instrument sounds, as opposed to a wall-of-sound where everything is more or less lumped together.  The songs are there- I can hear the energy in the performance, but it feels like something got misplaced in the shuffle between performance and this recording.  It’s clean-cut mid-to-fast tempo modern hardcore, with a very cool layout and great artwork, leave your doubts behind there.  I have a feeling that some of the imperfections the demo had were boiled out on this recording, and although I believe it is those same imperfections that make hardcore and punk what it is, the record itself is still not bad.  This being said, it is these imperfect people who decided to go their own way, not take society’s shit, and make the music that only weirdoes and freaks enjoy.  I can’t knock that.

-Aunty Social

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Discourse- Curse of Consciousness EP review

Discourse- Curse of Consciousness 7” review
This is pure 90s hardcore with heavy, crunchy riffs, a bass mixed in well, crisp/clear drums, and a hoarse voice wreathing out some harsh lyrics that keep you thinking.  Groovy and moshable as it is, it is a thinking man’s hardcore 7”.  The theory of the curse of consciousness is fascinating- once you are inundated with the awareness of what our world is, it’s impossible to forget it.  It is a gift to be given this knowledge, because nothing is more important than the truth, but too, the truth will weigh on you.  All the comforts of ignorance cannot unseat you from the throne of the truth, and this band is able to condense that feeling and transform it into an auditory format.  Excellent.

-Aunty Social

Monday, October 19, 2015

Forced Order- Eternal War 7" review

Forced Order- Eternal War 7” review
It’s like youth crew breakdowns with metal riffs, periodically picking up the pace, but mostly remaining at mid-tempo or the slower end of a fast tempo.  It’s a metal band with a bunch of breakdowns and a hardcore singer.  The short lead breaks are indicative that these guys like early 90s death metal a lot, and it does add an element not usually seen in hardcore (at least the hardcore I’m listening to- word is death metal-core is the hot thing on the block right now).  This is the kind of hardcore you circle pit and headbang to- 90s death metal riffs, a hardcore singer, plentiful breakdowns, and a lot of the fat of those death metal songs trimmed out, and for the better.  Cyrus poses the question “Can you dig it?” to which I can easily answer “Yes”.

-Aunty Social

Saturday, October 17, 2015

Fucking Invincible- It'll Get Worse Before It Gets Better LP review

Fucking Invincible- It’ll Get Worse Before It Gets Better LP review
Imagine if Dropdead (who has members in this band) were weirder, heavier, and not as political; the influence is not pronounced, but it is there.  The vocals are a little more spastic and grindy, higher-pitched, guitars are fast as fuck, regular tuning (as far as I can tell), and drums are gnarly.  Peculiar, albeit intriguing; for any fan of extreme music, really.

-Aunty Social

Thursday, October 15, 2015

Out of Hand- Visions of Death EP review

Out of Hand- Visions of Death EP review
These guys have two parts of a traditional hardcore song down- the riff, and the breakdown.  The problem is that that’s all their songs are, a killer riff played over a minute long breakdown (90 seconds, whatever).  Imagine a rubric for some kind of school project- there are five areas judged on this rubric, and this band completes three of them, passing with flying colors (the vocals are pretty good, lyrics are alright).  But the other two are just… absent.  It’s like they aren’t there.  I’m all for asymmetrical song structure, but I can’t help but feel like there’s a verse or chorus missing here.  It reminds me of forgetting to videotape something but remembering midway through the show and having to catch up on what you missed, or maybe a mixtape that gets cut off mid-song because the tape ends.  Three out of five elements are there and good, but it’s incomplete, and I can’t shake that feeling.  Keep writing those heavy metal riffs, though.

-Aunty Social

Tuesday, October 13, 2015

P.A.W.N.- Summer 2014 tape review

Payload of Atomic Warhead Nightmares- Summer 2014 tape review
Sounds like a d-beat raw punk band with a bit of an evolution in proficiency (in song-writing, sound quality, tone, almost everything).  Aside from the bass being almost inaudible, everything is a step up from the last tape.  Two old songs, three new ones, and a new singer make for an evolved group, though they have many more steps to climb as well.  The sound is improved, but the band would greatly benefit with a more controlled guitar sound, turning up the volume on the bass, and an increase in the sound of the cymbals.  That would do the band justice, no doubt.  The lyrics are some of the usual anti-war/anti-system stuff you’ve come to expect of bands employing exclusively black and white imagery.  Still relevant to our world situation, however.  The name of the band is a friggin’ mouthful, but they still have the potential to go places.  Who’s got the 10 ½?

-Aunty Social

Sunday, October 11, 2015

The Gulags- demo tape review

The Gulags- demo tape review
Another one of the many bands consisting of a similar group of around 7-10 people (who have had or do have members of Scum, Payload of Atomic Warhead Nightmares, Marrow, Cloud Rat, Live to Kill, and Ishtar), this has a different element to it not present in the other ones.  Extremely raw and underproduced, there’s no question these guys are DIY.  This is fast and loud, but Madison’s lyrical input is a welcome difference here- it makes a band that would otherwise not stand out be worth a look.  A bit more production value would do them good- the songs are good enough for an EP, but it sounds like it was recorded live rather than in studio or tracked separately.  A demo is a demonstration- now that you’ve done that, engage and act.

-Aunty Social

Friday, October 9, 2015

Ill Blood- Prisoner of Life tape review

Ill Blood- Prisoner of Life EP review
Mid-tempo hardcore definitely taking a few cues from 90s bands (both hardcore and non-hardcore bands), especially given the sort of groovy riffs the guitar player rings out.  Mix in a few mosh riffs, a few breakdowns, and some simplistic though decipherable lyrics, you’ve got this group, Toledo’s Ill Blood.  The vocals for this kind of music are usually more guttural and low, and here, they are more often than not shrill and high; it’s not different in terms of quality.  The guitar work here is very good; it’s distinct and clicks in your brain right away.  I wish there were more memorable riffs on here, but that’s not to say they’re bad.  In fact, the guitar is the best thing about this band.  The bass is cleverly disguised between the guitar and drum sounds, though it rings out independently a couple of times.  The drums are clear and well-played, you’ve gotta love the smoothness here.  For fans of mid-2000s era Bridge Nine bands, no doubt.  I’m not feeling it as much as I anticipate others might be, but this is worth a jam.  Now, let’s hope for a split 7” and see what they can do when backed with a completely different band’s sound.  I feel like this is a lot like the movie Shaft- definitely an acquired taste, kind of cheesy and campy, but you can dig it.

-Aunty Social

Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Ratstab- Noise War tape review

Ratstab- Noise War tape review
D-beat raw punk with a bit of a snotty Germs-ish singer.  Everything sounds so blown out, even the bass (which is the best sounding instrument in this band), and it makes this difficult to listen to- nothing is distinct or even sounds like it was tracked separately.  If it was, they did a hell of a job blending it together to create a wall-of-sound aura with a screaming idiot (as all punk singers are) over top it all.  It is indeed noisy- it’s very stripped down and simple, not great not bad.  It’s your friend’s band who is not your ideal opening group at a show, but they’re always available, reliable, polite, and supportive.  Maybe that’s what a scene is supposed to consist of, even if the bands aren’t great.  This is still better than a band who virulently rips off ONLY Hatebreed and Madball and hollers at the crowd “Why don’t you fucking pussies mosh!?”

-Aunty Social

Monday, October 5, 2015

Spiked Collar- demo tape review

Spiked Collar- demo tape review
This is raw and brutal but still has an independently tracked sound to it, which makes all the difference.  It sounds like a couple of current Texas hardcore punk bands, but a Detroit band instead.  This is what hardcore punk is supposed to sound like.  James’ vocals are rough yet decipherable, distant yet energetic, forceful yet not forced, snarly and mean but not in a bulldog-ish way.  Nick and Denis’ guitars are perfectly balanced between the raw and real and the well-produced and clean, where it’s neither painful to listen to nor too slick and overdone.  MANPUPPY’s bass follows with the guitar here- well blended, raw but not too much so.  Jake’s drums are tight but not so tight that it’s perfect; it is nigh-perfect in its imperfection.  With some badass hand-drawn artwork and a fresh perspective by the band members, these cuts make up my new favorite Detroit hardcore/punk band.  I cannot fucking wait to see more shows, cuz this demo is gonna last me a while.
James (the singer) told me about this band back in June of last year (2014) at the Trash Talk/Rzl Dzl show (a wild event in and of itself), and since he has always been on point in writing music, I was downright thrilled to hear it.  After a few months passed, I wondered what came of it, if it was just a pipe dream, dead in the water, or if it was progressing.  Then, in November, word was released, and my dream came true.  The waiting here was so very worth it.  Their first set at the Hard Stripes/Pure Disgust show at Refuge was so good, I almost yelled at them to play it again.  Hell, it was five minutes long anyways.  Cannot get enough of this.

-Aunty Social

Saturday, October 3, 2015

Dead in the Dirt- The Blind Hole LP review

Dead In The Dirt- The Blind Hole LP review
This manages to be heavy, fast, artsy, and thought-provoking, all in one.  And all this, coming from a grindcore band.  That’s right, the genre known for non-sequitors, an uncanny emphasis on drugs and political incorrectness, tunelessness, and generally being uncompromisingly stupid, managed to churn out something THIS good.  Heavy riffs, blastbeats, social critiques, oh my!
The guttural and shrieking vocals going back and forth is one trait of grindcore that the band kept, but the rest almost seems like it’s too good to be called grindcore.  Some songs clock in well under a minute, while others are almost three minutes, and the nigh-sludgy riffs are what keep one’s interest peaked.  Downright crushing!

-Aunty Social

Thursday, October 1, 2015

Crisis Unit- The Tape review

Crisis Unit- The Tape review
This sounds like what California’s Media Blitz was trying to do, but better.  Crossover-ish hardcore with an emphasis on tight drums and only slightly deeper than average vocals.  Not exceptional, but good.  Worth seeing where a four song 7” would go.

-Aunty Social