Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Hollow Truth - Evöl Street Metal from Ireland

Oh yeah! Hardcore since a long time has infiltrated other genres and since those early days, various crossover genres have been here to stay for better of for worse.

Well in this case all I know is that I absolutely adore that streetwise, sped up crossover hardcore thrash! I'm talking about the type of hardcore that may sound like metal for some, but has a distinct hardcore influence and is of course delivered by hardcore kids, not big headed arpeggio-playing metalheads. In fact, this is the only thrash I want to hear! And that's because it has a street-level quality, a high mosh factor, and it can definitely put me in a good - albeit evil - mood.

So that's exactly what Hollow Truth from Ireland does. It takes the Cro-Mags Best Wishes (or later) formula, and mixes it with a more skatecore influence (especially on the vocals), which makes me think of early Suicidal and other bands of that ilk. The riffs are fucking hard and perfect for the pit, the groove is always on, the vocals are punky and not some ridiculous high pitched yell, the bad-ass aesthetic is in check (see the fantasy/war cover below)... everything is set for a band that will stay on my playlist for the next year, or who knows, even more! I am waiting to see what these guys will do next as I am heading straight for the download of their FREE demo. You should do yourself a favor and do the same!

New & Current U.S. hardcore bands to check out!

One good thing about the existence of labels like Reaper Records is that the search for cool new hardcore becomes so goddamn easier. This particular label is doing a lot of hard work to support the scene by bringing the best of US hardcore to the world. Isn't it true? Noteworthy hardcore bands out there are bound to end up on the bill of a Reaper show! I personally see the Reaper imprint as a guarantee for good hardcore and have gotten into many new bands through Reaper flyers etc. Just like with this one below...

Now let's get to work and do something similar with European hardcore and our own local scenes. Unite and push hardcore to the world!

Friday, December 14, 2012

2 Great Releases from Moonlee Recs!

OK so today we're back with some quality punk rock to review. We don't review much melodic punk here any more, but in this case we couldn't do otherwise cause Miran from Moonlee Records sent us two records that t o t a l l y deserve your attention. Read below and find out why this is some of the best European punk rock happening right now!
First up we got Debeli Precjednik (Fat Prezident), a band name which I'll never be able to pronounce. Nevertheless, this Croatian band is a force to be reckoned with in the eastern European punk rock scene, since they play some of the catchiest California-type melodycore that you'll get to hear. They've been going since 1994 and this is their 4th release. So in a way we're dealing with legends here.

Believe me when I say, this band has nothing less compared to the best melodic hardcore/punk rock in any scene, I mean musically this is up there with your Rise Against, your Satanic Surfers and your No Use For A Name. I could draw a bigger comparison especially with NUFAN, since Debeli Precjednik too has that overly emotional but also powerful approach to their songwriting.

These are songs that you're really gonna want to fuck shit up to, to skate to, to fall in love to... you get the deal, they are catchy as hell and they have a nice and pleasant, totally feelgood vibe. Just nice and tight punk rock hits with a crystal-clear production to back them up. I know that many hardcore kids out there get pissed off with this type of American Pie punk, but not me, since I grew up with shit like this (along with hardcore) -- back in the day it was OK to like both. But what am I talking about, kids these days like hipster black metal and Title Fight at the same time, so I guess it is worse now.

Summing up: this is a very good record of upbeat, super-melodic hardcore that goes down very smoothly. After song 8 I kind of get the feeling that this isn't an album that will change my life, but it's still good and something I could easily play again and again. Perhaps when the weather is better!


OK - XAXAXA must come from another planet or something; I mean on paper they are from Skopje, Macedonia, but how else can I explain this band's unbelievable talent in delivering punk music that shoots straight to the heart? This is really what these kids have achieved with their awesome Husker Du meets Leatherface brand of alternative punk. Chaotic yet melodic, their songs are wrapped with the sort of melancholic nostalgia and dry wit that can infiltrate your mind, and give you room to think and daydream.

Yes, punk was invented in order to be like this, life-affirming, revolutionary and self-explanatory through its uniqueness. XAXAXA must have really thought about music and punk rock, because they've done something that very few bands do nowadays: that's playing straight from the heart and inventing their own identity musically. Because yes, we can draw comparisons with the big names mentioned above (as well as a few others, i.e. Hard Ons perhaps, Dag Nasty, Hot Water Music), but this band has life of its own and plays a very unique style that doesn't imitate and can't be imitated. So yeah, don't go thinking that this is your everyday hipster wannabe mid tempo punk!

The production is simple and not too polished, that's totally OK cause XAXAXA bring the potent melodies one after the other, leaving you no room for criticism, only appraise. Quality songwriting with perfect verses, and choruses that are catchy without sounding cheesy or anything of the sort. The guitars are always distorted but not extremely heavy, and there is a minimal use of female vocals, a horn or a keyboard here and there, just enough to give the whole outcome an extra boost of melody and extra terrestrial coolness. The best thing about this record altogether is that its tunes have a sort of spontaneity that creeps in and grows on you--the stuff that makes all good records worthwhile.

I now feel bummed that I didn't go to see this band play when they played Athens a while ago. But at the same time I am glad I finally got turned on to them, and for this I gotta thank Miran. Music is my entire life, and these guys make me remember why :)

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Brutality Will Prevail - "The Path" (video)

No fancy introductions to make here... just check this awesome, traditional-style hardcore video from moshing heavy-hitters Brutality Will Prevail. They have a new album on Purgatory Records, which is UK's (or perhaps Europe's) premier straight edge hardcore label right now. Check that new BWP shit out or you'll be missing on some real heavy riffs and true hardcore attitude!