Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Pianos Become The Teeth - The Lack Long After (2011)

Screamo supremo. One of my most anticipated releases this year and it definitely hits hard. The band seem to have condensed the sound of their last outing somewhat, opting for a thicker, darker sound than we've heard from them in the past. The post-rock influence we've come to expect still comes through, but this time around the band seem to have focused more on building a stormy atmosphere. Even the quieter sections have a heaviness to them, eschewing the twinkly style of Old Pride in favor of more brooding bits that are at times reminiscent of Funeral Diner, the whole affair backed by some of the most badass drumming the scene can offer. Kyle's vocals have also improved, now including some really emotive sing/shouting along with his usual outright howl, and the lyricism is as inspired as ever. Really can't praise this band enough, please go out and see them while they are on tour this fall, they put on a really good show.

Please support, these dudes are the real deal:
buy 2nd pressing of the LP/CD/digital/merch here
try it here (updated links)

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Hexis/As We Draw/Euglena - Split (2011)

Artist: Hexis/As We Draw/Euglena
Genre: Post-Hardcore/Post-Metal/Black Metal
Country: United States

A great release by three up and coming post-hardcore bands, the Hexis/As We Draw/Euglena split very much offers a look into the darker side of the aforementioned genre. While As We Draw and Euglena sprinkle in elements of post-metal to make their songs extra epic, Hexis's contributions dabble in the realm of black metal giving the album a nice sense of diversity. Although there are still some things that could be worked on, these three bands hint here that they just may have some pretty bright futures ahead of them.

Bandcamp (you can either order a vinyl version or download and pay at your own price)

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Infernal Stronghold - Godless Noise (2009)

Artist: Infernal Stronghold
Genre: Black Metal/Hardcore
Country: United States
Record Label: Forcefield Records

With no time for small talk, these jokers get right down to the thick of things and take you on a ride of intensity that doesn't let up until they've released you from their grim, frosted grip. 28 minutes of crusted black metal played in a hardcore format consisting of short songs and quick bursts of punk-like aggression (whatever the fuck that is). A 320 kbps stream/download is available on their bandcamp, though you can also make purchases through their website.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

James Dean - Discography

James Dean were a little-known punky screamo band from Australia that disbanded in 2008. As far as I know these two demos are the only material they have recorded, which is a shame because their shit is really excellent. Their vocalist does the sort of sing-speaking thing during the mellower moments that really recalls that old-school emo sound, along with some nice noodly guitar work and occasional gang vocals. That description blew, but this band doesn't and that's what matters. Check it out, I've included their CD-R and the 7" they released after they broke up.

P.S. If anyone happens to have any of these tracks in a non-shitty bit-rate, drop a comment, I'd love to get those.

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Sicktrip - Demo (2011)

Raw as all fuck, Sictrip's first demo is a nothing but a grindin' good time-- between vicious blastbeats, metallic hardcore breakdowns and particularly dynamic dual vocals, this is a great introduction to the grind scene for the band.


Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Snowing - RIP

K, so I love Snowing. There's something about these songs that really gets to me. I mean fuck... I know the story of an emo band forming, releasing a handful of songs and breaking up three years later is a familiar one, but when its a band as good as Snowing, it still stings a little. These guys were the real deal. They have this way of playing like sloppy, pop-punkish twinkly shit and then its like they get tired of that and just jam on these climactic riffs that feel like they could go on for days, the whole mess held together by pretty much the best singing and lyricism twinkly has to offer this side of Empire! Empire! If you are remotely interested in emo, pop-punk, sad-sack jams, etc. and you're not listening to this band you're fuckin' up. Download, listen, learn the words, fall in love, drive around singing at the top of your lungs like a jackass at 2 in the morning.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011


One of my favorite releases to come out this year so far, not a second of this split doesn't rule. Alpinist delivers with absolutely inspired crusty goodness, incorporating generous amounts of hardcore flavor. The occasional well-placed breakdown and excellent use of more decidedly dynamic sections only serves to elevate their tracks further. Alpinist really breaks through the fourth wall here, and although Masakari doesn't quite match their quality on this split, they certainly bring their fair share of intensity to the table.

Mostly a caustic, dirty affair, the Masakari tracks suck you in with a subdued intro before they pummel you into the dirt with unrelenting fast-paced riffing and throaty vocals. A few slower sections and more bass presence add to the atmosphere of the record as a whole, and the split really comes off as a cohesive whole, seeing both bands approaching similar territory with enough give and take that it never gets boring. Really worth your time, highly recommended.

Alpinist has provided this mediafire link on their bandcamp page, but unfortunately I believe all the LPs are sold out. Download, enjoy, buy a shirt or something, I don't know.

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Love Like... Electrocution- Love Like... Electrocution (2002) (

Seems like these guys have been under the radar since their inception. They don't raise the bar, nor was that their intention, but it's a beautiful combination of raw hardcore/emo that will leave you breathless. Don't let the song titles fool you(Das Plague; It's French for Germans). Love Like...'s lyrics tend to grab you by the heart and never let go. A must for any fan of emo.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Punch - Nothing Lasts 7" (2011)

If you've heard Punch before you already know the drill. For those who don't know, Punch is a female-fronted bay area hardcore band. They fucking bring the pain: short, fast songs (what song structure?), screechy vocals, feedback, etc. Just had the pleasure of seeing this band with Loma Prieta (who they share a couple members with) and Beau Navire, and learned that they have a new 7" out. This is their latest offering, 7 pissed hardcore songs in just under 10 minutes. Probably not quite as good as last year's full-length, but I'm certainly not complaining.

The Hope And The Failure - The Lights Are On But This Dance Never Ends (2005)

Artist: The Hope and The Failure
Genre: Screamo/Post-Rock
Country: Sweden
Label: Unsigned

A female fronted screamo group from Sweden, The Hope and the Failure's first and only album The Lights Are On But This Dance Never Ends is easily one of my favorite screamo records ever. Built-up upon glistening post-rock verses with chilling spoken word narrations, half of The Lights Are On But This Dance Never Ends is the the most chill, yet unsettling music ever. The other half is energetic screamo madness with post-rock styled dynamics and a super unique sense of melody.Overall this album is just win all over, so definitely pick it up.


Monday, August 29, 2011

Gallows-True Colours

I almost hate to say, but it seems the addition of Wade McNeil has added many new levels to the sound of what was once a very-promising band. Goodbye Frank! We don't need you anymore. Full download of the new song "True Colours" can be found at

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Sen Deni - No More (2010)

Artist: Sen Deni
Genre: Screamo
Country: United States
Record Label: ???

Coming a long way from Belarus, Sen Deni play a really dynamic form of screamo with strong post-rock influences. Coupled with the pained screams of lead vocalist Andrew, Sen Deni pound through moments of fast and furious octave chords and jazzy drumbeats with relative ease, often momentarily ceasing their emotional chaos for awesome clean interludes. Check this shit out.


Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Natural Law - Slump

Artist: Natural Law
Genre: Hardcore
Country: United States
Record Label: Katorga Works

Awesome old-school styled hardcore with some intense instrumentation. Probably a bit darker compared to the bands of old but a lot of the melodies and whatnot definitely seem inspired by the classics. Overall this is just really fast, concise and violent hardcore that shouldn't be missed.


Thursday, February 24, 2011

Failures - Failures

Artist: Failures
Genre: Thrashcore/Fastcore
Country: United States
Record Label: Youth Attack!

Another excellent Mark McCoy project, Failures spastic thrashing breakdowns are reminiscent of what a more mature Charles Bronson would've sounded like during their later, more powerviolence influenced days. This is personally my favorite vocal performance from him (aside from his work in Arts) and overall the music is really great on this release.

Cheer Up

Monday, February 21, 2011

The Gentle Art of Chokin' - Discography

Artist: The Gentle Art of Chokin'
Genre: Thrashcore/Fastcore
Country: Germany
Record Label: ???

With only 3 releases so far (a s/t 12", and two splits) The Gentle Art of Chokin' has certainly made a name for themselves with not a whole lot of material. Dissonant, violent The Gentle Art... at times almost reach powerviolence levels of aggression but always maintain a firm stance in hardcore derived melodies and grooves, a great combination that makes listening to their relatively short discography nothing but a pleasure. Great instrumentation, great vocals, and overall just great everything, it would be a big mistake not to pick this up.


Saturday, February 19, 2011

What Price, Wonderland? - It is True, It is Shakey (2009)

Artist: What Price, Wonderland?
Genre: Emo
Country: United States
Record Label: ???

Don't have too much time, but for a quick description until I can get something more substantial together, this is basically post-hardcore influenced emo that fucking rules. Great instrumental work!


Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Torch Runner - Locust Swarm (2010)

Artist: Torch Runner
Genre: Hardcore/Sludge
Country: United States
Record Label: Closed Casket Activities

Yeah sludge is one of the few musical genres left yet to be tainted with a syndrome I refer to as "suckage". Adding elements of sludge to your music, no matter the genre, instantly elevates the quality of material you output above the level of shit. Torch Runner made a good call, incorporating it into their sound in a tasteful, elegant, innocent manner. Fast songs, slow songs, man these guys have it all: down-tuned guitars, a drummer who uses more than just his snare, a vocalist who has a least three different screams (blaaaagghh!!! raaaaaaghh!!! wraaararar!!). It's called variety brother, and these bros from North Carolina dish it out in ~20 mins.

Sweet serial killer van dudes I know it's what I would drive.


Monday, February 14, 2011

SQRM - Rodeo (2010)

Artist: SQRM
Genre: Hardcore
Country: United States
Record Label: Youth Attack!

Pretentious as it is, stating that SQRM may just be the band to herald the next generation of hardcore music is made all the easier, even after just one listen of group's sophomore effort entitled Rodeo; adorned by the glassy-eyed gaze of a clown who by looks of it is about to trade in his big, red nose for a noose (perhaps a subtle jab towards hardcore's fun-loving spirit), the album's cover is simple yet jarring, the perfect visual to represent the schizophrenic madness held inside. Self-loathing, outwardly loathing, SQRM may not be trying to change the world. but their well-spoken dissatisfaction with well, everything, is not only compelling but dangerously addictive, a bad habit that will leave you on a Rodeo binge daily

While their cover may sneakily be attacking the scene they were spawned from, that is where all subtleties on Rodeo end, with both the lyrics and music of SQRM aiming for nowhere but the jugular. Utilizing a suitably filthy production, SQRM's minimalistic version of hardcore is the perfect means of conveyance of their rampant hatred of all. Fittingly, one of the best examples of the Western Massachusetts deranged style would be the album's title track, where SQRM's vocalist (who like the rest of the band has made his identity annoyingly difficult to discover) with his raw howl rolls off visceral verse after verse, almost psychotically delivering the devastatingly straight-shooting lines;

"Your fucking scene, your fucking face, your fucking looks, you're a fucking disgrace! Call me a freak! Don't like my cloths, don't like my hair! I'm a fucking freak, spit on me, just sit and fucking stare!"

Enlightened lyric writing skills? Definitely not, but coupled with the seething fervor of his delivery juxtaposed against the band's slow and droning tempo, his scornful words somehow manage to transcend genius. Not only is the album lyrically abusive with songs like " I Can't Find My Knife" recalling the story of an obviously troubled individual (maybe the clown!?!) who (luckily!) can't find his knife, or the excellently titled "Cut My Strings", a pessimistic message about everlasting stagnancy, but musically Rodeo reciprocates the same intensity in a fashion just as captivating. "You Still Can't Live" depicts SQRM's energetic side, where the band mashes more traditional hardcore elements with their own perverse take on the genre, crafting stop-and-go guitar lines that as ugly as they are surprisingly memorable.

As a "hardcore" band part of makes SQRM so damn good is just how original and different their hardcore really is; rarely adopting the genre's usual breakneck pace ("I Can't Find My Knife", "You Still Can't Live" and closing song "Waste" are really songs that approach hardcore's standard speed), SQRM's down-tempo assault is what truly separates the boys from the men. "Upsidedown Cross" (bet you couldn't guess, a song about bashing Christianity and their lord and savior Jesus Christ!) showcases the group's thinly distorted guitar tone play slow, anger infused dirges of sloppy power-chord passages, accented a steady, simple drumbeat, a perfect accompaniment to the rest of the music. SQRM's drummer doesn't flaunt his skills often, but on tracks like the aforementioned "Waste", the faster paced tempo allows for him to shine, performing powerviolence-like blasts and thunderous drum-rolls with an astute sense of timing.

Whether SQRM's intentions were to ever change/improve the time-tested hardcore formula or not, the notion (probably originally started by fans anyway) has become something of a reoccurring themes within reviews and assessments for the band even since their first album, with Rodeo inspiring even more confidence in all those who support them. Deservedly gaining new fans by the truckload, SQRM you may mega-loathe us, but we can't get enough of you.


Friday, February 11, 2011

Mata Mata - Mata Mata (2010)

Artist: Mata Mata
Genre: Raw Punk
Country: United States
Record Label: Crepusculo Negro

Raw punk that actually belongs to the Black Twilight Circle, a group of black metal musicians who as of last few years have been crafting some of the best USBM ever to come from the country. Mata Mata (like their black metal contemporaries) are an extremely raw outfit, taking the distortion of metal and feeding it through simplistic outbursts of punk aggression.


Thursday, February 10, 2011

Salvation - Mortality Interactions (2010)

Artist: Salvation
Genre: Hardcore
Country: United States
Record Label: Youth Attack!

Salvation is a great hardcore band coming from Pennsylvania and their latest album Mortality Interactions is a great continuation of the fuzzed out, uber aggressive hardcore Salvation has become known for. For a hardcore album, Mortality Interactions is actually quite a dark record, containing some pretty twisted moments that give this album a great deal of personality. Also the vocalist is absolutely awesome, with a really distinct, raspy voice.


Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Strong As Ten - Strong As Ten

Artist: Strong As Ten
Genre: Hardcore
Country: France
Record Label: ???

Great, fun and fast hardcore from France. These guys have a great sense of humor about them yet it doesn't detract from the quality of the music at all in fact gives them a good deal of personality. Great dual vocals for variety, Strong as Ten has some sick instrumentation that includes some cool thrashy inspired moments, but is mostly pretty straightforward hardcore that is just played insanely well.

Play Fast or Apple Pie

Sinat Hinam - Sinat Hinam (2008)

Artist: Sinat Hinam
Genre: Stenchcore
Country: Israel
Record Label ???

Israeli stenchcore, Sinat Hinam for the most part play pretty straightforward and crusty music that also happens to have some pretty strong metal overtones. Songs like "Self-Holocaust" and the untitled seventh track definitely are good displays of the band's heavier side, showing off some of the band's excellent riff writing capabilities while other songs such as "Existence Apathy" rage with crust's blind simplicity, pure unbridled aggression that completely breaks all restraint. Overall this album is really enjoyable and a great pick up.


Face The Rails - Face The Rails

Artist: Face The Rails
Genre: Hardcore
Country: United States
Record Label Tank Crimes

Coming from the Bay Area, Face the Rails play hardcore that brings to mind The Descendants with jangly guitar tones and a guitarist that absolutely fucking shreds. Sun kissed Southern California punk melodies, snarled vocals and music that slips between happy go lucky punk bliss and frantic, instrumentally adept yet incredibly sincere hardcore madness, Face The Rails is a record that should be owned by every punk and hardcore fan.

Trash Talk

The Cancer Kids - The Possible Dream (2006)

Artist: The Cancer Kids
Genre: Thrashcore/Fastcore
Country: United States
Record Label: Youth Attack!

Easily one of my favorite Youth Attack! releases, The Cancer Kids' The Possible Dream LP is an absolutely fantastic slice of thrashcore madness. Featuring members from Bucket Full of Teeth and Failures, this now sadly defunct act from Western Massachusetts swirled the melody of eighties hardcore with blast beats played at a grindcore tempo, also generously throwing in some fantastic mid-tempo breakdowns to boot.