Thursday, July 26, 2007
Saturday, July 21, 2007
Wednesday, July 18, 2007
A little change of pace here: die hard crusties may want to look away... After they broke up, Ottawa's Okara released their only full length, "Months Like Years" (Spectra Sonic Sound Records). They had already put out a 7" and a split 7" with Mothman, which were very poorly produced. "Months Like Years" has some recording issues as well, but it is far better sounding than those previous outings. And, thankfully, it is their best material as well. On this monster, you'll find 8+ tracks of somewhat mathy indie rock that might find a comfortable home in DC, as well as in San Diego (in the early '90's). The guitar is raucous, jangly, and off-kilter, but the man behind it is in total control. Competing with this is the rhythm section, which brews a dizzying concoction of hyper-jazz rock that at times would feel danceable, if it were not for its unpredictability. The competition is a draw, and the product is a very kinetic, forceful, and edgy rock record. Fans of Shotmaker, Three Penny Opera, and 30 Second Motion Picture may recognize the vocalist. However, his vocals are basically the only similarity Okara can boast of with these bands. It is a shame this 3 piece couldn't hold it together for a second LP... I can only imagine how good such a record could have been. I was hoping to post their entire record, but there are still couple of copies left out there, so I wouldn't feel right doing that.
Tuesday, July 17, 2007
Monday, July 16, 2007
I am posting songs from Kolokol's "Tilbake Til Start" 7" as well, because it would be a shame for people to miss out on this excellent disk. Here the band cranks through 6 songs which were written in the '90's. These tracks are decidedly unrelenting and fast, and afterward, you feel as though you listened to an entire album ... it's that satisfying. On the LP, the band has more space and is more "mature," so they play around more with tempo changes and song structures. Whichever incarnation of Kolokol I listen to, I must conclude that they are one of the best hardcore bands in Europe. Give 'em your support!
"Ingen Mennesker" from "Flammer og Farger"
"Ny Tid Truer" from "Tilbake Til Start"
"Solgt" from "Tilbake Til Start"
Friday, July 13, 2007
Thursday, July 12, 2007
I picked up Schifosi's "Ill Winds from Outopia" LP a couple of years ago based on a one-line description. It probably used words like "dark" and "crusty," and most likely compared them to Tragedy. They have since become one of my all time favorite hardcore bands. The description was mostly accurate. The guitars are a dark, layered, and melodic frenzy, supported by what can only be considered d-beat drumming. They may start with slow, haunting intros on some tracks, but once the punishment starts you can expect fast-paced hardcore the rest of the way. Most fans will cite the vocals as the biggest distinguishing factor. The vocalist (yes, it is a woman) belts out a unique, gutteral roar that edges toward grindcore. Some gruff male vocals enter the mix, but the lead vocals are the shit! All their records are outstanding, but one really stayed with me...
The "Half Lit World" 7" is perhaps my favorite collection of Schifosi songs. All four are ragers, and two of them ("Drowning in the Aftermath" and "Law is Freedom") are the best songs the band has produced (only an opinion!). This ep brought their sound to a new level of darkness, with good song writing, and a heightened poetic sense introduced into their lyrics. Really great stuff!
Schifosi are from Melbourne, Australia, and I believe are still active. Members also play in Pisschrist and Abc Weapons (post coming soon on these guys). Although Schifosi toured parts of the US a couple of years ago and have plenty of fans here, I still don't think enough people know about them. In the future, don't be surprised if you encounter similar dark, female fronted hardcore bands on this site.
Schifosi/Slackjaw EP (kick start my heart)
"Ill Winds from Outopia" LP (CD includes "Half Lit World" songs) (endless blockades)
"Half Lit World" EP (aborted society)
"Absentium Existence" 12" EP (alerta anti-fascista)
"Drowing in the Aftermath"
Myspace Tribute Page
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