Wednesday, December 31, 2008

2008 top releases

What better and more self indulgent way for me to see out 2008 then to publish my top releases for the year that was? So many great releases over the last 12 months has made this list virtually impossible to compile, so rather than counting from ten to one I've just thrown down a massive list here in no order. If you've been reading my blog for long enough, you already know most of this list anyway, like I said, I'm just indulging myself here.

I found these guys this year, along with all of their records. Not exactly sure about actual release dates with some of the stuff, but I'm almost positive that most of it was birthed in 2008. If not, it was definitely a late 2007 affair. To date they've done a demo tape, the "Reality Choke" 10" and tape, the split with Sidetracked, the split with Massgrave, and the live radio split with Godstomper. They've also seen material released on the "Trapped In A Scene" PV compilation. Great band, probably one of my favourite for 2008. The 10" is unstoppable.

Need I really go on about this band here? These days they're massive within nearly every hardcore circle, they have the sound that seems to be able to appeal to nearly any demographic. I read an interview with the bands guitarist once that eluded to a near end for the band, and what better way to go out than with the stuff they did this year? I mean I really hope they don't throw in the towel, I'd love to see them play live before they do, but if they were to, you know they'd be happy with what they did. The "Conscious Unconscious" LP destroys nearly everything in its wake. Just unrelenting doom. 2 songs, something like 20 minutes. A friend recently described the break in 'Unconscious' as sounding like a giant stomping over a tone of trashed cars. Worked well for me. "The Prodigal Son Brings Death" on the other hand is said to be of just fast No Comment style PV. Short songs, no bullshit. I've heard one song off it, and I agree. Mine is due in the mail very soon. I probably won't get in until 2009, but it is a 2008 release to me.

A great year for this band. 4 releases and a QLD tour... I was stoked to be able to see these guys play 3 times. 2008 saw the release of the bands second long player "Sick". As most should know it was a concept album of sorts, based around the bird flu. Songs written detailing its effects and causes etc. The LP at this point was also the fastest and most grindish that they've done. Great album and probably the most polished stuff the band has released to date too. And all within the last 6 weeks, we've seen 3 new ep's released aswell. The split 5" with Rupture, which was all b-sides from the "Degenerate" sessions, the split 7" with Agents Of Abhorrence which I'm told is also left over tracks from other recording sessions, I'm guessing from the "Sick" studio time. And tonight apparently sees the release of the bands new ep on Shortfuse Records. I heard nothing really about this ep until yesterday afternoon, but reports tell me that the band are doing 2 new years release shows in Melbourne for it. Lucky Melbourne bastards. This stuff is supposedly the roughest they've done for a while, sounding most similar to the early, more straight up Boston stuff they did with the demo and first 7". I'm worried I'm gonna have trouble getting my hands on this ep.

Wow. This band had stuff in the pipe line for ages before anything was actually officially released. Tracks floated around here and there for a fair bit, and it's safe to say that I had probably 75% of the s/t ep and split with Masstrauma in my possession before either were actually released. Anywho, when Missing Link eventually did get around to pressing these 2 pieces of wax I jumped on the orders straight away and did manage to get the limited colours. Cock skin pink, and dick head purple if I remember correctly? Both 7"s were recorded in the same sessions, so both have the exact same sound. It's a great sound for how I heard they did it, it's clean and crisp, but in no way overdone. Second best grind violence band in this country this year.

Holy terror mayhem from The United Kingdom. This bands releases have left me more or less speechless. If you have any remote interest in anything resembling any good, heavy music, you need this bands stuff in your life. Integrity/Ringworm worship, but with enough of their own hooks and input to make it great. As with In Disgust I'm not totally sure about actual release dates for their stuff, I am thinking the three 7"s that they have material on were probably released in 2007, but 2008 was the year that they did blow up for sure, and the year I found them. You may be hard pressed at this point to find the demo 7", the split with Hordes, or the split with Braindead, but A389 Records is releasing a discography LP of it all in 2009, and Deathwish Inc is due to press an LP with all new material too. Jump on these guys, 2009 will be their year.

I have collected all this band previous ep's in the past. I always kind of liked them. I was never crazy about them, but their sound always did appeal to me in a sense. To be honest though I think the main reason I did get all their stuff was because I new at some point they would blow up. Well this year they definitely did, and for good reason. Where I was always on the fence with their old stuff, I am totally in love with this new s/t LP. It's relentless, angry, moshy hardcore. Easily the best stuff they have ever done. They pressed and released this album on their own after leaving Deathwish Inc in what some people may say a rather abrupt manner. It's rough... super rough, but that adds to the charm of the recording. It's heavy, and the song structure certainly seemed to take a differing direction on this release. Less typical skater thrash structures lead to much more PV influenced stuff with plenty of short and fast songs and mid temp changes. I was totally surprised with this LP and I hold high hopes for this bands future.

TEAR GAS
Local Brisbane scum bags unleash a ripper of a demo tape on QLD's unsuspecting ears. Lead by Brisbane punk celebrity Neal Bramley, it's safe to say that this tape is probably the best demo to hit my ears this year. I never dug any of Neils previous exploits too much, I have the Draft Dodger records,but I'm by no means mad about them at all, but with Tear Gas, the myriad of sounds going on here (clevo thrash, jap thrash, even some Slayer riffs) turns me on every time I listen to it. Expect great things in 2009.

Speechless. "The Way Is Narrow" single. Listen to this song again and again and again. Just a sign of how big this bands 2009 LP is gonna be. MASSIVE. If you don't like this band you may as well be dead. Check out all of their older stuff too. The "Butchers Bill" single, the "Constant Struggle"  LP, and the "Burden Of Empire" single. Earlier stuff was deadset later Cro Mags / Leeway worship, whereas this new single sees the band really extending upon that formula and making it their own. All amazing.

A friend of mind turned me on to this band a couple years back when they put out their demo tape. I loved the tape at the time and with the release of their first ep I initially had a little trouble adjusting to the cleaner sound. With time though I have grown to love said ep even more than the tape. Then 2008 sees the release of their second and even cleaner ep "Solitary Confinement", and from the word go, I am in love with this stuff. Yeah it's cleaner, but for some reason I didn't have to adjust to it again. It just slipped into my taste stream seamlessly. I was siked. Typical stuff for No Way Records. Harsh, snotty hardcore punk with I'd say heavy DC influences.

Another Perth PV gem. Who knows what the fuck goes on over in that part of Aus, but for some reason this town constantly seems to pump out all of the best PV/Grind/Thrash influenced hardcore bands. Where Extortion have gradually progressed their sound over time, and currently seem planted heavily in No Comment era Cali bliss, with this new tape, Suffer really sound heavily influenced currently by Crossed Out and the fastest bits of Infest. This tape is for scum bags. It sounds like it was recorded in  a dark, dingy warehouse somewhere surrounded by junkies and murderers. It's super rough. It's super dirty. Micky sounds possessed. Another band I am really excited for in the '09.

These guys didn't release anything this year. But they did do a 12" ep in '07 that I only just found this year. And after checking my lastfm it's my most listened to new found band of '08. I wish I found this ep earlier. It is amazing. Later, more metal era Cro Mags mixed with even more Slayer riffs. Lots of heavy mosh bits, and some really good vocals. Reminds me alot of Violation too. Such a good band, and I can't wait for their new stuff due in the next 6 months.

These guys put out their first ep this year that I only seemed to stumble upon almost by accident. The description for this 7" on RevHQ does a little to compare the band to Think I Care. Now when I read this, being the PV nerd that I am, I automatically assumed they meant the early era TIC stuff. Like the Infest worship stuff. No, I was wrong. Creatures bite heavily on mid era TIC, like "Mogrel" era stuff. And that's not even a bad thing by any means. I guess it would be if they didn't do it well, but Creatures have mastered this sound it's clear. The dudes vocals are an exact mirror of JasonTIC's, and all of the song structures are of that NY, mid paced mosh style. Some of the breaks on this ep are so damn catchy too. Very very good stuff.

So that's the main list. The stuff I could be fucked writing about anyway. Other honorable mentions include:
The new Cruel Hand LP. It's good. But nowhere near as good as the bands older stuff. The Pressures On demo tape. Great early Boston styled stuff. A little too rough in places, but Nathans vocals are great. The Insect Warfare/Agoraphobic Nosebleed split 5". Great release for IW, ANB shit me though. I discovered Gehanna and Catharsis this year. Whoa. The Hatred Surge 7" single and 5". Very obscure stuff by this band, but cool none the less. The Obliteration 7" was pretty good. The Breathing Fire LP. Great LP. Alot of people seem to be crazy about it. I'm not, but I do like it alot. The new Bitter End 7". The song 'Purgatory' on this ep is without a doubt in the world the best song the band has ever written. I hope all of their future stuff sounds like this. The Can't Relate demo tape. I never really dig on youth crew, but I love this Melbourne bands tape. I heard they broke up? I hope not. "Seizures In Barren Praise" by Trap Them gave me an enormous erection. More than once too. Too graphic?

Think thats just about everything that deserves a mention from me this year. I've probably missed a few, but from memory, everything I have listed here is what stuck out in my mind for 2008. Thanks for a good year hardcore universe.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

In Disgust stuff

First up, the In Disgust 'Reality Choke' tape. I know, I already have the 10" of this, but I am a collector fag remember. Not much different with this tape to the wax apart from the obvious. The layout, and photos are much the same.

Then there is this new split they have with Godstomper. It's a live recorded piece, with both bands 'battling it out' apparently for radio supremacy. It's a cool record, and surprisingly crisp for a live recording. As I expected, the In Disgust stuff, though all being previously released material, shreds, but I've never like Godstomper and this record hasn't convinced me otherwise. Lots of little fiddly bits upon opening the record. Two big fold outs, a little backside card, the front cover, and a little photo credit snippet. Clear wax.

I am happy in the fact that I have managed to snag the bands elusive split with Sidetracked that I have been chasing for a while too. It's due in the mail any day now. These guys have a tone of new releases scheduled for the early part of next year. What is it with grind bands always having a shitload on the cards? I'll be getting all of them.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

The Kiss Of Death Interview

Not sure what ever happened to The Kiss Of Death. I'm hoping they're still doing stuff these days, but it's been a looong time since I did this interview, and as far as I know they haven't recorded anything since I did it. Anyway... they are/were a great doomy styled band taking heavy cues from the book of Paranoid era Black Sabbath, and mixing it up with some Wolverine Blues era Entombed and some Louisiana sludge. The band was mainly comprised of members of the amazing late 90's era metal/hardcore unit Turmoil. Hence my interest in them. They put out one really fucking good CD EP nearly 5 years ago that was chock-a-block with slow, dirgy, doomy stuff that had an underlining up-beat feel to it. Needless to say said EP was amazing. I conducted this interview with the bands guitarist Hydro for TheSharpEnd issue #3.


First up, who’s in The Kiss Of Death and what roles do you play?

The Kiss of Death is myself, Jeff Hydro, on guitar.  Jon Gula on vocals.  John Gardner on guitar.  Jimmy Dorward on bass.  Chris Frey on drums. 


Where are you guys from?

We are based out of Allentown,Pa. in the good ole' US of A.


Do you find that The Kiss Of Death is ever often referred to ‘the other band that the guys from Turmoil are in’ etc? Do such comparisons annoy you?

Gula and I are from Turmoil.  Gardner played in a band called Sever the  Fallen, that was also on Tribunal Records.  Gardner now also plays bass for Turmoil.  Chris plays drums in a band called Dragon Green. The Kiss of Death doesn't really "sound" like Turmoil, but the Gula's voice is instantly recognisable, so that's about the only thing.  Music-wise, I don't think it sounds like Turmoil at all. 


Coming from a more hardcore orientated background do you find that shows are more comprised of hardcore kids or metal / groove / sludge fans? Are hardcore kids surprised by the sound of the band?

Not really.  I think the Kiss of Death actually has its own following, because it doesn't sound like Turmoil at all.  Of course, when people are promoting shows, they always put "featuring members of Turmoil" on their fliers, websites, etc.  But there also are a lot of people who like both bands and there are quite a lot of people who like this band more.  It's pretty much people who are more into stoner rock, sludge stuff; but there are a lot of hardcore kids who checked it out that like it, too.  I know at first when people heard about us & they knew it was guys from Turmoil, they were probably expecting it to sound like that, but we wanted nothing to do with that at all.  We wanted to do something different.  Something along the lines of the stuff we actually like and listen to.  So i'm sure most people were surprised when they heard it, if they knew of Turmoil.


Do you ever worry about alienating the fans of Turmoil?

No, not at all.  If they don't like it, they don't have to listen to it.  It's actually better if people don't know of Turmoil, then they can listen to us as a new band, with no preconceived notions of what it will / should sound like.


Why did the band originally get together?

We got together at the beginning of 2002.  Gula and I started this for something fun to do, because Turmoil had broken up in 2000, and neither of us had done anything with music since then.  I hadn't played music since 1997, so I was totally into trying something new.  We were kicking around the idea of starting something & we had already talked to a friend of ours about playing drums (Mike Bowen, who played drums for Turmoil for the last year the band was together, 1999-2000.).  The funny thing about this band coming together, though, is that Gula and I went to see the GetUp Kids in Philadelphia to hang out with James DeWees, and by the end of the night we had our first show before we even had songs written or other band members.  James had mentioned that Coalesce was going to be doing a reunion tour & it was going to be the original line-up, with him playing drums.  So, he said we should get our shit together so we could open some of the shows.  He leaves us for a couple minutes, goes outside to talk on the phone, comes back in a minute later and says he just talked to their booking 

agent, told  him the "new Turmoil" band was gonna play the Philly show, and just like that we had our first show.  So, we had to go home and write some songs for a show that was 3 months away.


How does being compared to such great as Crowbar and even Entombed make you feel?

It's great.  That’s the kind of shit we listen to all the time, so to be compared to such great, influential bands is always an honour.


It seems that of late alot more sludge influenced groups are becoming more popular in hardcore circles. Bands like Doomriders being a fine example. Do you see this sub genre getting alot more popular in the future? Do you think it could be the next metalcore?

I don't know if it'll be the next metalcore or not, but it definitely has the potential to be just as big, if not bigger, because this kind of stuff is more "listenable" to more people.  I think more people can grasp this type of music because it's a lot easier to follow.



What bands are The Kiss Of Death proud to list as influences?

Influences?  Iron Monkey, Cavity, Eyehategod, Buzzoven, Black Sabbath, Suplecs, Eternal Elysium, Green Machine, Kyuss, Che, FuManchu, Clutch, COC, Down, Electic Wizard, Entombed, Church of Misery, Sleep, High on Fire, Pentagram, Witchcraft, etc.  You know, that kind of stuff. 


Why did you guys originally decide to write music like this? Why not take an easier, more popular road like another core band?

Because I hate metalcore.  99.9% of the bands out there totally suck & have nothing original or interesting to say, or play.  It's a fucking fashion show.  Plus, this is the kind of music we love and have been listening to for the last 10-15 years & we figured we'd try something different and fun.  Playing this music is so fun.  We can all just go out and play anywhere; bars, clubs, arenas, basements, social halls, VFW 

halls, anywhere.  People can come out, drink a beer, have a good time, and not worry about if everyone at the show thinks they look cool or not.


When writing songs do any particular members of the band play key roles or is it more of a group thing?

Musically, i write everything, with help from Chris.  But, just about everything comes from an idea that I have, and then we take it from there.  Gula has written all the lyrics so far.  I'll help him out with some ideas, grammar, maybe using different words, etc.  But, all the ideas for lyrics have been his.


As of now you guys only have one show scheduled for the near future. Does having members in such other high profile bands make it hard for you to find time to devote to The Kiss Of Death? Is the band really only a part time thing?

No, the band is full-time, but we do have to work around  the Turmoil schedule.  We just played 5 shows in the last month or so.  But then this weekend we have 3 Turmoil shows.  After that, we have a 3&1/2 week Turmoil European tour with Most Precious Blood that starts January 13, 2006.  We have show offers for the Kiss of Death that will start in February.  So we just work around the schedule and its no big deal.  We know so far in advance what we're doing with Turmoil, that it's pretty easy to work around.


When touring etc is done for Turmoil will you have more time for The Kiss Of Death?

We actually have to finish organising the new material.  We've been playing 2 new songs out, plus an intro, which is actually another song. Plus, there are a few more songs that are just about done, so we're ready to go in to record a full-length.  We don't know who is going to put it out yet, though.  We've talked to a few labels about it, but no one solid yet.


You guys have had a self titled EP out since the beginning of 2004 on Tribunal Records. Where can fans get their hands on this?

You can get the cd directly from us, at www.thekissofdeath.net.  You can order it from Tribunal Records directly at 

www.tribunalrecords.net.  He has exclusive distro through Lumberjack, so you can get it through Lumberjack-online.com.  Also, it's available through amazon.com, ebay, etc.


How did the deal with Tribunal come about?

As I mentioned before, our other guitar player, John Gardner, was in a band called Sever the Fallen, and they were on Tribunal.  He also did all the mastering on Tribunal's releases for a while, so when this came up, he mentioned it to Matt (Tribunal owner) & Matt was totally into it.  Plus, Matt is a huge Turmoil fan, so he was definitely into releasing it.


Being that The Kiss Of Death is more of a  metal orientated band these questions may seem out of lace but i’ll go ahead and ask them anyway. What is the worst thing about hardcore at the moment?

The worst thing about hardcore right now is the bands.  They pretty much suck.  There are a few good bands, but for the most part, it sucks. We've been listening to the same shit for the last 20 years.  It's getting old.  I love listening to the 10th generation youth-crew bands, playing the same 1-2-1-2 drum beats.  Fucking boring.


The best thing?

The best thing?  Because there are so many shitty bands, when you play in a band that is actually good, it actually stands out so much, because the other stuff sucks so bad.  That's a good thing.  And, because of the success of some of those bands, the music is that much more accessible now.


Do you think it will ever be possible for Turmoil and The Kiss Of Death to tour together?

Yeah, it's definitely  possible for that to happen.  We have played a few shows together already, and they were great.  We would have to get in a lot better shape, though, because doing a full tour like that would wear the hell out of us, physically.  I think it would be worth it, for sure.  Especially for Gula, Gardner, and myself, because we'd be getting paid twice for the same show. Hahaha.  2 guarantees, that's great.


Any thanks?

Yeah.  Thank you, Sean.  Oh, and hail Satan - burn the flag. Buy our cd & bring us and Turmoil to Australia.  That would be awesome.

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Extortion/Agents Of Abhorrence split 7"

This record is fast. Really fast. It's the most consistently speedy stuff that Extortion have ever probably put on one release. Rohans lyrics also seem alot more introspective than they ever have before. He doesn't rage on about serial kilers or fucked up situations. The majority of the stuff seems to deal with himself personally and his troubles with the world. I must say though, that normally I am sketchy on splits, they usually seem rushed, or just a place to stick some b-sides. But I can say that every track on this record is awesome. The AOA stuff is cool too. More of the same as alot of their stuff. Just grind grind grrriiinnndaahhh.
Best artwork of this year without any doubt. Rohan really seems to be going from strength to strength with his talents. The full colour shade makes it a million times better.
Clear wax. Will be getting the blue too.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Insect Warfare/Agoraphobic Nosebleed split 5"

Got this today on black. $12 as opposed to $40. Sucker.

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Records

I know I keep saying that I'm stopping the record buying for savings sake, but fuck, is it ever so hard. Just cruising through the local stores second hand bin empties my pockets without even trying, nearly every time. Take note of these two for instance...
Madball's 'Dropping Many Suckers' 7". On black. Not sure of any real info at this stage. Ill check it out soon though. And Gayrilla Biscuits 'Hung Queens...' 7" on pink. You love this band.

Then there's these new beauties I got a hold of...
I love the fact that I paid a mere $10 for the following 5". It's going on eBay now for upwards of $40 and it's been out for maybe 3 weeks. IDIOTSITELLYOU. Insect Warfare/Agoraphobic Nosebleed split on red.

Hellnation/Capitalist Casualties split LP. As far as I know this record has been in the pipeline for a long time. I haven't listened to it yet, but if it's anything like both bands previous works, I'll be mawshin'. We all know this. Digging hard on this artwork too.

And finally, the new Herds 7", and this 'Phoenix Thrash Detonation' comp 7". Both on black. I looked into Herds after I started getting more into Hatred Surge. I think one of the members of Herds runs Deer Healer Records, the label that put out a recent Hatred Surge ep. And the comp 7" has Get Destroyed on there, a band my mate Micky turned me onto. Plus there's a mushroom cloud on the cover. Instant sale for sure.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Mongoloids/Kids Like Us split 7"

To be honest I am almost clueless as to why I bothered buying this record. Maybe it was cause the two previous Mongoloids releases that I have (the first 7" and the LP) weren't actually too bad. But yeah the label allowed me to download the tracks from this split after I pre ordered (more than 4 months ago I might add!), and to tell you the truth, they're all pretty average. I've never liked Kids Like Us, ever, and these days The Mongoloids are just a pure hype band.
Anyway, District Lines decided to release about a million different official covers (okay six) for this record, each one representing a different horror character. Same tracks on each variant, just a different character. Mines the wolfman of /320. There were also covers with a mummy and dracula etc etc. At the time of pre order you also had the option of buying the entire pack of all six records with a poster as well. And to my complete surprise kids have actually snapped up this shit. What a joke... kids are fucking gullible idiots. One thing I'll say that is a positive about this record though is that each of the covers were actually printed on the dust sleeve, not the card... not much but I guess something cool. One thing I'm pissed with though is that my printed sleeve has chipped up a bit, as you can see on wolfmans right cheek. So maybe it's not such a positive? You be the judge.
Needless to say I won't be ordering the other two Mongoloids releases that are on the cards currently.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Bitter End Interview

This one appeared in the final issue of TheSharpEndZine.  It was written around the time that the bands debut LP 'Climate Of Fear' was released I believe. After all was said and done, I don't think that the band was really able live up to all the hype that was generated around that album. This years latest 7" is far superior in every aspect, and I hope that they continue in a similar direction with future material.

Something that I have noticed down here in Aus, is that hardcore has without any doubt really picked up momentum in the last 4 years. Is it the same there is the states? Are shows getting bigger? Or has it always been the same? How would you say hardcore is different now as opposed to maybe a decade ago? Were you involved that long ago?

I am only 22, and my first “hardcore” show was Sick Of It All in October of 1999. As far as real hardcore goes, I think it has gotten a little bigger, but when I watch videos from shows in the late 1990s the turnout seems about the same. The difference now is there are a lot of bands like Bury Your Dead and Hatebreed who have some roots in hardcore, but their fans don’t really go to the smaller shows. Of course you there are some kids who start out listening to the bigger bands and eventually find out about underground hardcore scene that isn’t quite on the radar of your normal heavy music fan. . For better or worse, hardcore has become more mainstream than it was 10 years ago. I’m sure it is the same in Australia. When I was younger I don’t ever remembering hearing about hardcore bands in Australia, but now there seems to be quite a few. 


What is it like growing up in an environment with such a rich and extensive history? So many influential bands have come out of that country.

Even though I live in the United States, growing up in Texas is a little different than growing up in New York City, Boston, or Philadelphia, but I still live in the United States so I am sure I get to see a lot more bands than kids in Australia get to. I think no matter where you live, you are going to wish you could live somewhere else for a little while just to experience what that place has to offer. I would love to have seen some of the awesome Australian bands from the 1980s like Massappeal, Death Sentence, or Vicious Circle. I don’t know how in touch Australian kids are with their history, but if you haven’t done so, check out the bands I just mentioned. 


So many good bands seem to be coming out of the US as of late, but with that comes plenty of shit. It’s almost as if you can do a band and get a demo out, you can get signed and do an Ep. Where do you feel that Bitter End fits in amongst the scene, good and bad?

The United States has a lot of good bands, but there are a TON of terrible and cheesy hardcore bands too. Luckily we have been able to make friends and do some tours with bands I consider to be some of the better hardcore bands the United States has to offer. Shipwreck, Bracewar, Blacklisted, Have Heart, Down To Nothing, The Mongoloids, Reign Supreme, Meltdown, Violation, War Hungry, Iron Age, etc… are some of our favorite bands and playing shows with bands like those keeps me excited about hardcore. It is real easy to get bummed out on some of the dumb bands/kids in the United States hardcore scene if you pay attention to that stuff.


Do you feel that any band putting out an Ep or something is worthy of said release? If you know what I mean? Do you believe that the scene is flooded with a lot of unnecessary bullshit?

One of the best things about hardcore/punk is diy ethics, and any band can get together a record, and put out a demo/7”/Lp or whatever. Of course with the ability for any band or person to start a label and release something, unfortunately you are going to have a lot of unnecessary bullshit getting released. On tour I’ve seen some great bands, but I’ve also come across a lot of unknown bands who have put out one demo, and want to do a United States tour. That is fine if people actually care about your band, but a lot of time these bands aren’t very good and no one likes them yet they feel the need to book a U.S. tour after only being a band for 6 months.


The new album was released on CD format by Malfunction/Deathwish, and the wax version on Blacklisted bass dude, Dave’s label Six Feet Under Records. Why use Dave to press the wax?

When we were in the process for writing “Climate of Fear” Tru who used to run Malfunction decided he was going to let Dave do the vinyl for all the upcoming Malfunction releases. Dave is a friend of mine, and does a good job with his label so we didn’t mind at all. 



Will you guys be sticking around with Deathwish for future releases? With pretty much every band they do these days, they press the wax. As far off as it may be, can you see that happening with Bitter End?

I can’t say at this point what is in the future label wise, right now we are happy with Deathwish, but have no contractual obligations for another record. I doubt we will be leaving Deathwish/Malfunction anytime soon unless we get some insane offer from someone else. The vinyl for “Climate of Fear” was already at the pressing plant when Deathwish bought Malfunction so they never had the opportunity to press the vinyl. 


A general course that I see a lot of bands taking these days is to release the demo, and maybe throughout the life of the band maybe an LP, and at least one split 7”. Ever see Bitter End doing a split with anyone? If so who would you love to do a split record with? I think Iron Age would be perfect?!

We don’t have any plans to do a split 7” anytime soon, but who knows? A split with Iron Age would probably be pretty cool. To be honest, I doubt we will ever release a split 7”, but as they say, never say never. 


And with that said, what older hardcore band, from any time before 1990 would you love to get to do a split with?

The best band of all time: Cro Mags.


So yeah, I know quite well that BE do have quite a loyal following dow here in Aus. Does it surprise you at all to know that there is a fan base for the band this far away?

I had no idea that we had a good amount of people in Australia that like Bitter End. You would know better than I would if what you are saying is true, so I believe you. It is crazy to think that someone so far away listens to Bitter End. Hopefully we can play shows in Australia someday.


So what is in the immediate future for Bitter End?

Right now we are just playing some shows in Texas, and concentrating of some of our responsibilities at home. We will be doing the tours this winter I mentioned earlier in the interview. After that, I don’t know what will happen. If anyone wants to help us put together a tour of Australia, get in touch. www.myspace.com/bitterend or bitterendhc@hotmail.com


And the more distant future?

I know we are going to Europe this summer, and after that we have no set plans. We are going to do the band as long as it is fun and worthwhile. Maybe we’ll break up in 6 months; maybe we’ll still be touring in 2020. Time will tell.


Any thanks etc?

Thank you for caring enough to send over these questions, and if anyone in Australia actually likes Bitter End that is awesome. Shipwreck has a record coming out at the end of the month called Abyss. If you can find it in Australia, be sure and get a copy. The album is incredible.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Trap Them

Just gonna take a quick second to rave on about the new LP, 'Seizures In Barren Praise' by Trap Them. I have enjoyed all of the bands previous work to date, but this new album is by far the best material they've ever put together. Grim. Dark. Heavy. Chaotic. If this isn't the music you drop nukes to then I have no idea what is. Earth ending stuff.
Currently I am forced to endure only the mp3 format of this album, but I will be getting the wax soon. How could I not?

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Wax

My mate Borg has started a new label Sniper Fucker, and the first release is this Shock Troop LP. Doomy/Jap thrash stuff from Austria. Green wax = Aussie press.

Trapped Under Ice demo 7". Haven't actually listened to it yet, but I like all the other stuff they've done, so I reckon i'll dig this record.

My good mate John Hobbs in Melbourne sent me these grindcore 7"s for free this week, along with a handful of grind/thrash CD's. I love John.

Eating Glass 'Feed Them To The Vultures' 7". Apparently they sound like Integrity. I know another band who sound like Integrity who use this exact same artist. I'm weary.

Surrogate/Willows split mini CD

I'm a sucker for different shit like this. 5" CD's always get me. Brisbane prog metal. Mine hand numbered 88/100.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Mind Eraser- 'Conscious, Unconscious'

Got it today. Black though, I missed the coloured press.
Cool artwork.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Extortion/Rupture split 5"

This bad boy deserves it's own post. Perth PV 5"s of bliss. Extortion do 'Pathetic' which has already seen the light of day on the American release of the Degenerate CD, 'Shit For Brains' and 'Fucked In The Head, both of which I don't think I've heard yet. I think all 3 songs actually come from recording sessions of the Degenrate LP, so it's older stuff. I'll tell you when I jam this suckah. Rupture do 'Vegetable Cunt Fun'. Charming name I know. Not sure if this song has been previously released or not... I thought I had most of the Rupture mp3's, but I don't seem to have this track on my computer. But I'm betting it has seen some kind of release in the past.
RSR (Regurgitated Semen Records) and Hate Ape Productions released this record. RSR have put out a tone of great PV/Grind/Thrash over the years. I think Hate Ape is actually the dudes from RSR little Rupture worship label thing. Though I'm not totally sure. Who better to be featured on a split with Rupture than Extortion though? Can't beat that.
I was told today by someone that the Extortion/AOA split 7" is due next week. Siked. All over that thing like a racoon on a can of beans.

Stash

New records today. Probably the last big stash that I'll be getting for a while, due to previously mentioned saving goals.
Infantcide 7". Haven't listened to it yet, but it's on 625 Thrash, and the bands fucken name is Infantcide. I already know how this ep will go. Trapped Under Ice/Dirty Money split. Dirty Money suck, but I don't mind Trapped Under Ice. And the tracks I've heard from this release were great.

Not sure what to expect with this Obliteration 7". Members of Mind Eraser and Knife Fight apparently, so I'm pretty excited to hear it. Will blast tonight for sure. Check the mad snake fold out insert. That better remain exclusive to the first press.

Finally received my Downpresser 12"ep. I've raved on about this band heaps recently. And rightfully so. Great heavy band. Massive poster insert. Clear wax.

This Comp Kills Fascists 2x LP. The artwork on this wax version is so much better than the cd version. Awesome grind violence comp featuring Magrudergrind, Weekend Nachos, Insect Warfare, Brutal Truth, Shitstorm among a tone more. Great release.

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Records

Mother Speed- "Bizarre Reality" 7"
Pretty much only got this one for the sweet cover art. Apparently they sound like Black Flag. We'll see.

Entombed- "Serpent Saints- The Ten Amendments" LP.
I don't think I really need to explain this band. What? I do? Raging Euro metal. Get a clue mate.

Friday, November 7, 2008

Cruel Hand- Prying Eyes

Today's mail brought me this. 'Prying Eyes' by Cruel Hand.
Purple wax /500. I just missed out on the /100 press. That shit sold out really quick. 
After all the hype, I have been somewhat let down by this album. I mean it's great, and I'd still mosh to the band live, but it's nothing in comparison to the band's last long player. Oh well, you can't win 'em all I guess.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Hard Luck Interview

I haven't posted an interview in a while, so I thought this little Hard Luck piece would be good for a read. It's an old interview, but if you haven't already read it, I guess it's cool. It's a shame these guys are breaking up. One of the best bands that this country has produced in the last 5 years easily.

Members, roles etc?
tyrrell drums, josh plays the guitar, slick murph crisis is angry and i play bass.

So you guys have just come off an east coast tour of the country with Queensland’s own Benchpress. How did that go?
it was fuckin great, we had a rad holiday and really didn't want it to end! plenty of messy shit, lots of time spent at casinos and other seedy shit.

How did the band hook up with Cade and Benchpress? How did you guys get along for the tour? And how did you get the idea?
josh went to school and grew up with most of the band and they've stayed friends since so that was easy. the idea came about cos we wanted to go on tour to launch our new 7" and josh said lets do it with benchpress. so we did. those guys are all crazy seedy dudes. don't talk to them. ha ha had a rad time, if you're in queensland you should check em out. AHC rep.

The tour was done in support of the release of the bands new 7”, ‘What Went Wrong’. Manage to sell many records on the tour? How has the 7” been doing?
yeah we sold a bunch of 7's and cds on tour, it went pretty well, thanks for asking.

Where did you guys manage to get to?
um, we hit cooma first for some snowy mountain hardcore mayhem. then canberra, melbs, a'town, melbs, sydney, newy, whatsupcastlehill, brisy and the sunny coast. we had to bail on a show in sydney and one in the gong so that sucked.

What were some of the highlights from the tour? Where were the best shows?
surprisingly, the canberra show at sound underground was the real highlight, it was fucking crazy, not a huge turnout but everyone went nuts. there was a soccer ball in the pit getting kicked around into everything then it smashed the only light in the venue so everyone was moshing in the dark on glass getting cut up and shit. then someone dragged a couch into the middle of the pit and kids went nuts jumping off it and shit. murph did a three quarter back flip off it (he landed on his back ha ha suck shit). good times.
castle hill show was pretty sick too. and sunny coast.

Now the two shows that I saw you play while up here in QLD, while you did get a positive response from a small crowd, not too many kids were going nuts if you know what I mean. I guess only because they weren’t too familiar with the stuff. Give it time. Did you guys get crazy shows anywhere else around the place?
i just answered that one. yeah it was our first time up there, so its sort of what we expected. good fun shows though. everywhere else we went we've been to before several times so they all went pretty well except for adelaide, adelaide was a bit poor, that was the third time we've been there this year as well! i don't think too many people like us in adelaide. cade broke a kids collar bone.

The new record has also been made available on CD. Also tacked onto the new material is the stuff from your earlier split 7” with Newcastles The Faux Hawks. Why not be elitist and keep the stuff in the analogue format? Why also did you throw the stuff from the split on?
fuck that elitist bullshit, 7"s are cool but some kids just can't be fucked or are too poor to go out and get a record player. everyone can play cds but. we also wanted to put out the faux hawks split tracks again cos we still play those songs and we couldn't be fucked sending away overseas to get another press done. so there.

The new material sounds quite a bit better quality than the older stuff. What was the big difference with recording this time round? Any big differences in the funding department? Where did you record?
um yeah i know what you mean. we didn't really pay that much more for this recording its probably just that we did it with the same guy who recorded our earlier stuff so maybe he got better at recording us or something and we recorded the instruments at a better studio than last time. we also recorded analog this time not digital so that makes a huge difference.


The EP was put out with the help of new label This Fate Records. How did you get into contact with Ken? Had you guys met prior? How did you hook up the deal?
ken used to live in canberra so we all knew each other from way back then. we kept in contact and when we made this band he said he'd love to put out a 7". that was 2 years ago that he said that so it took us ages to get it together.  

Do you find that writing the stuff you do alienates alot of the moshier kids? Or when you play do you get a good re-sponse from a mixed crowd?
it all depends. sometimes they might stand around nodding thier heads but other times you can see em going huh? and other times they mosh.

Definitely with the new stuff Murphy’s vocals are quiet a bit more frantic this time around. What happened there? Was it just a natural progression for him? Or did you guys make an intentional decision to try something a little different?
natural progression. all those vocals are 1 take from start to finish so you can actually hear his voice warming up through the first few tracks and then starting to crack in the last few. he hits his peak around song 3 to 8. ha ha what a deadshit. i rag on murph its what i do. get a life.

I know virtually nothing about the scene in Canberra where you guys are from. What’s going on down there these days? How is the scene?
it comes and goes with the opening and shutting of venues. a lot of kids into hardcore though just not enough venues. had some crazy shows here lately though. outbreak tonight was insane.

What good bands are coming out of our capital? Is there alot of more trad bands or alot of moshier stuff?
its a pretty big mix of shit coming out of hear at the moment. not too many trad bands but there is top gun who've just starts up, they're rad check em out if you can. we've got 4dead still tearing up shit every few weeks which is rad and a few excellent punk bands and some mosh bands. diverse. yup.

What do you guys think of the current trend in mosh bands at the moment? I guess if you were massive fans you’d be writing mosh stuff, but in general what do you guys think?
fuckin awesome man, keep up the good work yo, this shts rippin dawg, fuck yeah. i guess it depends hey, some moshy bands actually write some decent shit, some don't. we just play ragin.

So what’s up next for the band? With the 7” out now and a tour just completed, what are the next big plans for Hard Luck?
well i think we're gonna get over to perth before too long, maybe nz too. dunno. thinking about doing another 7 or maybe a 12. not too sure yet. wanna get this one out overseas, that'll take some time then probably do a world tour with benchpress! sup baby, sup sluts 1.5.18.

Any thanks etc?
thanks sean for the interview. check out mad rush demos out now. mind control zine 2, and the top gun demo. thanks to ric ta life and the back ta basics distro for accompanying us on tour. blek. punk rock motherfucker wow.