Thursday, September 27, 2007

Thin The Herd

Chicago seems like a sleeping beast when it comes to good crusty hardcore... and it has awakened under the name Thin The Herd! Wrench in the Gears Records put out Thin The Herd's debut LP "Mournful and Overcast" about a year ago, and I don't believe it has received the attention it deserves. These guys bring the noise the way I like it: crushing and frantic drumming, heavy and dark rhythm guitar, and lead guitars that stagger the line between chaos and melody. Imagine the unrestrained ferocity of Hail of Rage's throaty vocals and steamroller crust rhythms, coupled with Kakistocracy's dissonance and urgency. This is one powerful record brought to you by potentially one of the best US crustcore bands around.

Thin The Herd is indeed still around, but it seems the members are focusing on their other (metal) band, Black September, quite a bit more at present. Perhaps with some encouragement, they'll at least leave us another great album before ceasing operations.

"Barely Breathing"

Crimes Against Humanity
Young, Angry, and Poor

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Hatred Surge 7"

When a band names itself after a Napalm Death demo, you know you're in for a treat, and a little tinnitus. Hatred Surge is Alex Hughes, formerly of Insect Warfare. The nine tracks of pure aural hatred found on their/his vinyl debut EP (2005) are met with much pleasure by this reviewer. The songs are, of course, ridiculously fast (for the most part), and range from 30 seconds to two minutes in length. Precision is certainly not lacking, however there is enough of a chaotic feel to the recording to capture the genuine sense of rage which is mandatory for a powerviolence/grindcore record. Behind each rager is the expected laconic, misanthropic rant calling for the violent dispatching of our "elected" leaders, technocrats, Christians, and all other embarrassments to our species. All the best aspects Infest, Despise You, Iron Lung, and Crossed Out blend into the unholy miasma that is Hatred Surge. Long after the heyday of powerviolence, we may now be witnessing the arrival of one of the best bands in the genre, ever!

I can understand why labels are doing smaller pressings nowadays, but some records should NEVER go out of print! 625 Thrashcore Records has seen this EP fit for obsolescence. Until this changes, all the MP3s are available below. Hatred Surge has also released a split EP with Insect Warfare (OOP), and a split LP with The Endless Blockade. There are some exciting projects in the works, (including a split with Iron Lung) so keep your eyes peeled.

Download Zip Here

Friday, September 14, 2007

Coldbringer - "Lust and Ambition"

Just when I was afraid I would run out of Leatherface albums to wear out, I find Coldbringer. These Portland rockers don't sound like Leatherface, but they conjure the same bitter-sweet melancholia, via a similar punk-rock-meets-smokey-pub-workin'-class-rock aesthetic. At first I thought their 12" (Dead Ideas Records), "Lust and Ambition," was "very promising." But after many listens, I have upgraded my opinion to "damn good!" With a thick guitar sound, pounding punk rock tempos, and gruff Lemmy/Stubbs-esqe melodic vocals, it's hard not to be swept away by these tracks. Coldbringer seems to have some projects lined up for the near future, despite some line-up issues... so let's hope they stick around for a while.


"Metaphysical Ways"
"Death Generation"

Buy the Wax:
Brickwall Records
Hardcore Holocaust

Monday, September 10, 2007

Daymare 7"

Here's an ep that should have kicked off an excellent "career." Unfortunately, it appears that Daymare's 7" was a swan song & debut all in one. Released in 2003 alongside many other HHIG/Tragedy/Skitsystem-inspired European bands, Daymare certainly had my attention. They had the emotive darkness of fellow Frenchmen Fingerprint, with the heavy Swedish influence of the aforementioned bands. The (early) His Hero is Gone comparison enters the picture during the slow, ponderous, chunky moments where the band creates a very dreary contrast to their otherwise high speed approach. It is certainly at these times when the shrill, desperation of the vocals can be most appreciated. The singer is a woman, which shouldn't matter, but let's face it, sometimes it's nicer to hear a female's vocals, or at least a combination of both genders. The lyrics are fairly political, but are presented through the lens of the individual. Themes cover "workaholism," female self-image, and the bleak prospect of bringing children into the world in its current state of moral absence (but not morality in the Christian Fundamentalist kind of way, mind you). The ep was released jointly on Ratbone Records and Stonehenge Records, and according to the former, it is out of print. Until I hear otherwise, download at will... especially if you like Schifosi, Ekkaia, Garmonbozia, Ballast, or any bands mentioned previously.

Download Zip Here