Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Pink Turds in Space vs. Sedition

Along with the Crudos/Spitboy LP, I think the Sedition/Pink Turds in Space LP is my favorite split LP of the 90's. The record was originally released on Real to Real Records in 1990, and then reissued in 1994 on the great Flat Earth Records. Both bands have since released discography Cd's, but even those are becoming increasingly scarce.
Sedition was an assemblage of impassioned Scotsmen who played meaningful peace punk/hardcore with a bit of metal, fronted by a screaming bearded dude in a kilt. My introduction to the band was in the form of their one LP, "Earthbeat," which was a slightly modernized thrash/hardcore barrage, propelling lyrics which encouraged humans to resist over-production, over-consumption and state control by returning to their tribal roots, either physically or at least psychologically/spiritually/mentally. The tracks they contributed to the split LP, being recorded at an earlier time, were cruder and more straight forward, but every bit as powerful and engrossing. I hate to choose favorites, but I believe Sedition takes the title on this record (and just in general). Tracks from this split LP, the "Earthbeat" LP, and the split 7" with Disaffect are included on Sedition's discography CD, which is out there if you search for it. Band members went on to play in Scatha, The Dagda, Ruin...
Flip this platter over and you've got Ireland's Pink Turds in Space. In addition to donning one of the best names in punk history, they also boast some of the most obnoxious lyrics and vocals. Their music has more of a thrash metal influence, but the shitty production dulls the metal edge some. The vocals and attitude, however, firmly embed this band in the musical space we call punk. They're raw, they're pissed, they're funny... you will/already do love them. Rejected Records in Dublin put out the "The Complete Pink Turds in Space" CD, compiling these split LP tracks, the "Greatest Shits" 12", the split 7" with Charred Remains (MITB), demo material, and live tracks. Hunt it down if you can. Members formed Bleeding Rectum and other bands (leave a comment if you know names!).
Sample Tracks (if you've never heard these bands):
Download the entire Split LP (zip)
Click Here!

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Chispas - Relax! Nothing Is Under Control

Germany is my go-to country now for excellent melodic hardcore. With bands like Lost World, El Mariachi, Kobayashi, Inner Conflict, etc., it's no wonder. Chispas continue the melodic tradition on their only full length "Relax! Nothing Is Under Control." With all of the great political bands out there incorporating melody and a discordant, modern edge into their punk, Chispas breaks no new ground. But like a lot of German bands, they raise the quality bar. The music is mid-paced to moderately fast, with guitar melodies that tend toward a slightly darker range of tones, but without being too oppressive or depressing. The male/female vocal trade-offs are harsh, but very listenable. In fact, the female singer sounds uncannily like Tati from Lost World/Endrophobia/His Iro Is Gone, which is in no way a bad thing! Actually I wouldn't have any problem with more vocalists copping her grating brand of snotty punkness. The cover art is easy to ignore, so I thought I would present this record for those who may have overlooked it. Definitely a winner if you like Lost World, Ballast, Paragraf 119, To What End?, Bread and Water...




Profane Existence
Scenester Credentials

Wednesday, August 8, 2007

Unhinged - Win Our Freedom In Fire

The early '90's seemed to signal a new epoch in hardcore: musicians were staying in the "scene" longer and becoming more intelligent and musically proficient, and as a result their subsequent bands were all around better too. After the dissolution of Belgium's mighty Hiatus, at least one member went on to play in the also mighty Unhinged. This band was one of a handful that kept me interested in hardcore long enough to witness the flourishing "scene" that followed and continues today. Like contemporaries Zero Hour and Initial State, Unhinged took a darker and more passionate approach to the already crushing "crust" sound, and mixed in anguished female vocals to complete their absolutely devastating assault (Direct decedents may include Ballast, Jeniger, Kakistocracy...) The song writing is relatively complex for its time/genre, as was perhaps foreseeable from the final Hiatus 12" (which certainly improved upon the somewhat repetitive sound of Hiatus' earlier work). My favorite tracks by Unhinged come from their first two records: the "Resisting the Murder of Self" 7" and the "Win Our Freedom in Fire" LP. These two slabs are driving and raw, but still controlled and smart in every way. Their final LP "Crime and Punishment" was slower and a bit slicker, and I would certainly recommend it if you like the tracks herein. Nabat Records handled all of Unhinged's releases, and I am not sure about their availability. They seem hard to find, so I am posting rips from a CD that compiles these two records and some other early tracks (thanks to a generous "soulseeker" out there).

Thursday, August 2, 2007

Slang - Sapporo City Hardcore!

Two traditions meet in Slang. These South Coast Japanese Hardcore die-hards fuse traditional Japan-core with late '80's US east coast straight edge. If you have any doubts as to the sincerity or quality of their music, just look at the heritage of their homeland. I don't think I've ever heard a Japanese hardcore record I didn't like! These gents certainly do pull it off... and it appears that they are still together! They started off in the late '90's with a more traditional sound, and their new demo seems to be a harkening back to that. In between, "Skilled Rhythm Kills" (recorded in 2000) saw the band branching out with the more US influenced material. Combining the hard edge of NYHC with the energy and special something that makes Japanese bands so great, resulted in one heck of an album. The CD version (on Schizophrenic Records) is still available and contains some live tracks as a bonus. The LP version (see crappy photo I took of my copy above) was released on a mysterious Finnish label called Conquest Wake Records. Vinyl nuts (like me) will have to consult the ebay. Check out the tracks:

"Keep the Faith"

Hardcore Holocaust