Monday, September 30, 2013

THE BRIGADES - Costa Del Dole LP

Let's head over to Paris today to enjoy the wonderful melodic punk from THE BRIGADES. They released several albums and EPs throughout the 80's but this is the one I'm most familiar with. There's definitely some UK Oi influences and some touches of reggae in some of the riffing and chord progressions, but the end result is much more upbeat and sing-songy than your typical gruff French Oi. This LP actually reminds me a bit of countrymen AL KAPOTT in their delivery, and will also probably appeal to folks who worship a lot of the anarcho stuff from the 80's. Great batch of tunes!

Friday, September 27, 2013

POLISKITZO - Poliskitzofrenia Tape

I just saw these LA maniacs a couple weeks ago when they played with LAS OTRAS here in SF. Seeing them play to a room of rowdy supporters 7 hours away from their home was extra exciting to me, because I used to go see em play backyards and other spur of the moment DIY venues on their home turf where they always got the crowd moving. This is their third cassette (there's also one 7") and it continues on the path of bouncy and catchy-as-hell punk with no boundaries. Ska parts, thrash parts, fast parts, melodic parts, slow parts - all of it works like magic. There is a fun and cool spirit to bands like this that can't be replicated. It just has to be real. Gabriel's soulful crooning and blazing riffs teamed up with Eddie's signature snappy drumming set this band leagues ahead of any hyped-up genera-bands. Take any opportunity you get to catch this band live (or just go to LA) and download this fucking cassette now!

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

CRIMEN - Demo 2008

I toured Mexico in 2008 and CRIMEN was one of the true highlights of the whole trip. Hailing from Mexico City, CRIMEN spews forth an edgy and fiery form of punk with a touch of melody and darkness. Sometimes thrashy, sometimes brooding, mostly in between, but always super catchy. Most of these tracks ended up being rerecorded for their following 12" and 7" releases, but it all began with this CD-R. The band I was playing in at the time did the same DISCHARGE cover as CRIMEN, so we decided the most fun thing to do was lend our vocalist to their 3-piece lineup to execute the cover for the night. I believe the other local band that night was ANTIMASTER...

Sunday, September 22, 2013

MAZHOTT - Punk From Syria EP

Tian An Men 89 records is one of the best and most important punk labels in the history of punk. They've spent the past 20 years travelling the world and connecting with punks in some of the most unsuspecting places and releasing interesting if not astonishing records for them. After a couple years of inactivity, they've just released seven new records featuring punk bands from Morocco, India, Suriname, Guyana, Transnistria, Pakistan, Lebanon, and today's post - Syria! MAZHOTT's offering is the best of the bunch in my opinion. Driving and catchy punk with some excellent songwriting and charming guitar leads. Unfortunately there's not much info about the band or its members, but I found this live video and cannot imagine concerts like this happening in a country in a tumultuous civil war. I want to know more. As for the tracks here - "Mazhott" is basically a perfect punk song, but I'm gonna have to choose the live cut of "Sai'een" as my favorite. Punk from Syria - come the fuck on y'all, you have to check this out. Awesome.

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

SVART FRAMTID - Blitz, Oslo 12/23/1984

My parents just came to visit me this past weekend for the first time since I moved out to the Bay Area. I moved out here during the summer of 2011 in my Chevy Cavalier (RIP) with all of the belongings I could fit! Everything else was living in my parent's house in Dallas for the past 2 years, and they just delivered it all this weekend! It's exciting - like getting a bunch of new stuff that you know you already like all at once. Among the loot was 2 boxes of LP's, a bag of punk shirts, my old bass guitar, a stack of screened posters, my drum-set, and some cd's. While flipping through a bunch of cdr's, I found a few that an old pal from Chicago had burned me after we discovered a mutual love for Norwegian hardcore. He had been writing with someone that was involved in the scene in Norway in the 80's (maybe someone from a band? can't remember), and had acquired some amazing and rare live sets from SVART FRAMTID and KAFKA PROSESS. This particular recording appears to have been released as a tape back in '84. Seventeen tracks - all the hits from their EP (one of the top 5 hc/punk EPs of all time y'all, seriously), some others heard from compilation tapes, and then some unheard anywhere else! Oh, and a sloppy cover of "Dicks Hate The Police!" 

Monday, September 16, 2013

BONE IDLES - Beware Of The Wolf In Sheep's Clothing 10"

As was requested in the comments a few posts ago, here's the BONE IDLES from Karlsruhe, Germany, featuring Gunnar from all your favorite Norwegian HC bands on vocals. It was actually a lucky request fulfillment, seeing as how I just got this from a Portland buddy like 2 weeks ago. What ya get is some full throttle hardcore punk without much to point out, except of course for that trademark howl of his. If ya like later SO MUCH HATE with less creative guitar licks, this is pretty much it. 

Saturday, September 14, 2013

BARN AV REGNBUEN - Det E'kje Nåkka Artig Længer ep

This seemed like an appropriate EP to follow up the last few posts with. BARN AV REGNBUEN (Children of the Rainbow) released this amazing EP in 1986 on one of the best Euro punk labels ever, X-Port Plater, as well as an excellent flexi a year or two later. Similarities exist between them and other Norwegian stalwarts of the 80's, but BAR definitely had the coolest basslines and most unconventional guitar parts, creating almost their own category of ferocious but tuneful hardcore. Really unexpected, awkward gruff-sung vocals just make it all the weirder and more special. There's also a discography LP out there including more unreleased tracks, seemingly from the same sessions. This EP gets overshadowed by heavy hitters like SVART FRAMTID and BANNLYST, but I assure you, if you've never checked it out, it stands up right beside them as a classic!

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

KORT PROSESS - Discography

KORT PROSESS remains one of the most intense and interesting hardcore bands from the 90's. They're not exactly in line with the traditional Norwegian hardcore fare, but they're not really in line with much else for that matter. Intricate song structures twist and turn, never allowing you to catch your breath or break your concentration from the sheer intensity and brutality of their delivery. This tape collects both 7"s from 1993 and 1994 and their final double 7" from 1997. Playing this up next to the hordes of easily-categorized punk and hc bands of today, KORT PROSESS has definitely left it's legacy as a truly unique and timeless band. I can't go without mentioning that their EP's featured some of the coolest artwork to be found on a punk record. Essential collection!!!

Monday, September 9, 2013


I couldn't let my mention of CAPTAIN NOT RESPONSIBLE in the last post pass by without spinning their lovely single, and I got so giddy that I decided to share it with the rest of y'all as well! So what we have here is a massive supergroup of Norwegian hardcore folks laying out 2 perfect punk tunes with astonishing guitar riffs. CNR was two brothers from BARN AV REGNBUEN and LIFE BUT HOW TO LIVE IT?, the drummer from LBHTLI?, and guitar hero Børre Løvik of BANNLYST/STENGTE DORER/SO MUCH HATE fame. Wow, right? Oh, and of course Tor Idar later went on to sing in 2:20. "Self Pity" is the obvious winner on here - some of the best riffing to ever be heard on a punk record. There's such a unique and driving quality to this band's sound that really can't do justice with words, so you should just proceed to the download and listen repeatedly. I'm thinking I'll be posting more Norwegian stuff this week so check back if you're into that sort of thing....

Saturday, September 7, 2013

2:20 LP

When you're as big of a Norwegian hardcore fan as I am, you aren't satiated by new Norwegian bands nearly as often as you deserve to be, so you just go back to the classics. However, there were a few noteworthy bands in the last decade, and 2:20 was definitely one of them. I read somewhere that they named their band after the belief that no punk song should be longer than 2 minutes and 20 seconds, which I mostly agree with (there are exceptions of course). 2:20 fits more in the gruff and melodic category, but certainly still offer enough intensity to measure up to bands like SO MUCH HATE and JIN'RIK'SHA. This LP is brimming with brilliant guitar lines and is fronted by the distinguished Tor Idar from CAPTAIN NOT RESPONSIBLE. Other reference points include LIFE BUT HOW TO LIVE IT? and maybe a tad bit of LEATHERFACE (the go-to gruff/melodic comparison band, but 2:20 is much better!), but the Norwegian roots here are undeniable, and that's what carries this band and makes this LP unique in the wide spectrum of international hc punk. A record that came and went for some folks, but still sounds great and feels relevant to me. 

Thursday, September 5, 2013

V/A - Waasa EP

I love compilations - especially ones with exclusive tracks by elusive bands. This particular comp comes from Finland and features three excellent, underrated bands. AKK is full throttle and angry Finnish-styled hardcore with punchy drumming and choruses that hit home instantly. TREBLINKA is one of my all-time favorites, and deliver two amazing hc punk songs with urgent yells and their melodic-yet-charging guitar riffs. VIHAN LAPSET have a slightly more metal feel - when I say metal I'm talking more on the 80's glam side, keeping it more palatable for the punks than the bangers. Anyway, both of their tracks will stick in my head for days. All in all, a truly solid and rare comp that not enough of you will download and blare at full volume while tweeting or facebooking or doing whatever it is you do on the internet. 

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

GULAG - Η Άλλη Πλευρά

Exhilarating single from one of the best melodic punk bands to come outta Greece. These two tracks will please anyone who dug the previous GULAG posts I've done. The production is a tad bit better than their previous stuff and both songs are absolutely fulfilling for those with an appetite for well-crafted, memorable, vital punk songs. Choruses so anthemic, you don't need to know Greek to sing along! Released in 1994, and I believe it's limited to 300. 

Monday, September 2, 2013

OSTROV P - Neverte EP

Great hardcore from this Slovakian band. Don't really know anything about em, but I bet my Slovakian buddy Miso over at Muzika Komunika could school us. Fast and pummeling hardcore punk with strongly hollered vocals and rapid bass picking.  "Beznadej" breaks up the flow with it's mid-tempo and jagged rhythms, making it the catchiest of the bunch. An EP that's likely considered classic in the region it came from, and deserves the attention of any hc punk fiend. First release on the long-running Czech label Insane Society Records