31 May 2014


I can't really figure out why this is a "second tier" UK band, because their output easily rivals that of most of the heavyweights.  Pretty sure these tracks are from the '87 Peaceville cassette, though I can't be bothered to dig that tape up to see if these are different versions...

30 May 2014


Disgusting raw grind from Oklahoma. This shit is at least a decade old but is every bit as filthy today as it was the day it was created. It truly takes a special person (or perhaps it takes a truly special person?) to really sink their teeth into shit like this, and those special people will be justly rewarded after they move their mouse over the download here icon on their screen. EAT SHIT AND DIE are ripping grindcore with crushing breakdowns and almost comically blown out vocals. VOMITOUS UPHEAVAL are sample laden churning mosh/grind akin to West Bay Coalition bands like DEADBODIESEVERYWHERE but way more raw. Once again, the "Noise Not Music" paradigm is put to the test...

In a search for background information beyond state of origin, I discovered that the band names VOMITOUS RECTUM, VOMITOUS DISCHARGE and VOMITOUS are already taken. Which means it's going to be that much harder for me to name my new band. Sometimes the internet hurts more than it helps, you know?

29 May 2014


OK, so I don't really like the bass tone at the start of the first song - that is the beginning and the end of my list of complaints about this ten song kick in the face. Raw, forceful fastcore/PV with brief excursions into epic crust, the echo and effects are on the backing vocals (and it makes them sound massive) while the leads are just distorted by pure power and remind me of AKEPHAL even though the band doesn't (so really, that is a rather stupid "comparison," eh?). The whole thing lasts twelve minutes, but these Greek warriors cram an awful lot of power into those minutes, and I look forward to hearing more.

28 May 2014


It occurs to me that I have not posted any current and/or hip hardcore from the United States of America in several days. I would apologize if I were even remotely apologetic, but instead I will inject five tracks of blistering Brasilian metalcore into your earholes. From Belo Horizonte in the southeast, these kids bash through dual vocal madness ripped straight from the throat of early '00s German shits (if I told you that this was a lost gem from the Per Koro family and you knew what that meant then you would most assuredly believe me). I only wish there were more songs, but I'll take the tornado-meets-anguished-doom that is "Flagelo Terrival" on full repeat instead. These are the sounds that happened somewhere else....while you weren't paying attention.

27 May 2014


One of my bands played with THE GAIA in San Francisco in 199(5?), and while they supremely kicked our asses, I don't think I really grasped their importance or potential impact until they organized our Tokyo shows in 1996 (they picked up up at the train station and told us we had to hurry...it was very confusing...and before we knew it we were watching SHIKBANE and the final performance from SINK - good thing we hurried). Musically, they crank out "traditional" Japanese hardcore with jaw dropping vocals and riffs that stand up brilliantly when compared to contemporaries like DEATH SIDE and BASTARD, even though THE GAIA isn't as heavy as the latter and perhaps doesn't shred as much as the former (though this is debatable). These demos do more than just hold up, their rock 'n roll bent (especially on tracks like "Boys" and "Dream Machine" from the '93 demo) along with the non-stop gallop that commands the airing of fists set THE GAIA apart. You can address their gender if you like, and many do, but it's the content that really kicks up ass.

This DL contains THE GAIA demos from 1990, 1993 and 1994. Their Kick Up Ass and This One full lengths are mandatory listening for Japanese HC fans, as well as the No. 1 EP and the split with DEAD AND GONE. I almost forgot how fukkn good this band was...

26 May 2014


This is either some bedroom miscreant dicking around with an organ and a 4-track or some of the most brilliantly conceived lost horror short soundtracks ever. Little time investment is required on your part, and the dividends rewarded will make that investment feel very wise indeed as GAUZE AND IVORY BAND draws you in with two tracks of dark psychedelia. The shit is weird.

25 May 2014


These Florida kids kinda took a bunch of shit by storm in the late '00s. It might have been the tunes - '80s US hardcore kicked in the ass with a healthy dose of '90s DIY (I'm thinking FLAG reinterpreted by BORN AGAINST here), lots of youth and a sick heavy psych/grunge guitar, it might have been the fact that their shit always looked super cool or seemed to be hard to track down...personally I think it was The Internet. Right or wrong, I associate these meddlers with Mysterious Guy Hardcore - not like they invented it, but more like they were enveloped by it (if you aren't familiar with MGH, then please, do not delve any deeper, it is a stupid moniker that seemed to only exist on message boards and amongst people who tend to get wrapped up in things that don't really matter). After CULT RITUAL, these people formed some other bands. A couple of them I have liked, a couple of them I have not liked at all. This is the first CULT RITUAL demo.

24 May 2014


Ten minutes of destructive blackgrind. it's difficult to imagine anything sounding more grim and without feeling. Pure and raw intensity, nothing less.

23 May 2014


The spoils of 1980s adolescent postal communication and networking just arrived at your doorstep (or your inbox, or your RSS feed, or whatever). My pal Devon got this shit from someone a long time ago (he could probably tell you exactly from whom and when) and, instead of going into detailed descriptions, here is what's on it:
P.C.P. - rehearsal '87
VI - two tracks
RAZOR BLADES - Plastic Messiah EP
WAR OF DESTRUCTION - Nazisvin EP (but with the B side first)
P.C.P. - Split Mind demo

P.C.P. was the real shocker here - both the rehearsal and demo tracks are stellar, while the RAZOR BLADES record admittedly drags a bit (hard to imagine all that girth on one EP, but I am certainly not paying for an original and the internet doesn't lie, so there you have it) and you should already be at least relatively familiar with WAR OF DESTRUCTION and perhaps even VI. This tape is a punk saying: "Hey person from the other side of the world, this is what is happening where I live....what is happening where you live?" And it was done with care and it took a lot longer than assembling a digital playlist. And also, the fool forgot to tape over the NAKED RAYGUN shit at that end, and NAKED RAYGUN pretty much rules....so you win twice today.

I know the tape says "Belgian HC" (inasmuch as Devon's handwriting can say anything at all) after "Sweden HC" was crossed out. All I can say is that those countries are basically pretty close to each other and maybe Devon was suffering from your basic geographical discombobulation that day...and that fools who make mix tapes should take care of cassette adornment (or at least handwriting) before the tape is sent to its new home.

22 May 2014


The sounds are dark and rough, primitive black metal with sinister troll vocals. Erratic drums blast and roll over the top of a raw and hollow recording, almost preventing the guitars to set the tone that I'm sure they are aiming for. I can't help but wonder if this is some NSBM shit (someone please either confirm or deny this?) but, aside from the song title "Genocide Supremacy" that could have come from a thousand anarcho crust bands, there are no outward indications...just a lingering suspicion. Four tracks, wholly unrefined and genuinely disconcerting, which is most assuredly the point.

21 May 2014


Closed minded hardcore pricks can move right along to Wednesday (when I will probably post some synth drone annoyance) and try your luck, while those of you who like to approach punk with open ears and no preconceptions are probably about to be stoked. I admit that I like this more than I think I should, and that I cannot really defend my appreciation of what is essentially  college beach cabana meets surfer douche outfit with one kinda punk song (and my defense would not extend to the 6+ minute "The Fall" -  I have no excuse for that one), but that doesn't change the fact that the jams are chill...which is the whole point. It's the dub element that appeals to me more than the reggae - "Silent Stare" into the weird "Silent Songs #2" remix that closes the tape are fukkn killers...and the whole tape somehow makes me feel like I'm on vacation. I cannot imagine that very many people will listen to this, considering the general demographic of Escape visitors and my description, but I think that those who do will be rewarded.

20 May 2014


While the cover looks like some weird SACRILEGE offshoot (to me, anyway), the sounds could hardly be further removed. Midwest sounds from 1990 that seem torn between reaching backwards to the DC sounds of the late '80s and breaking ground for the grunge explosion that was right around the corner. Without having any context for the band, I feel like they were perhaps (contextually?) not unlike SLUGFUZLE, though probably more rooted in a DIY scene. Only four songs on this tape, and it's not hard at all to imagine a world where this band became something more than just a tape that a bearded sloppy internet hack could celebrate twenty years later (admittedly the vocals are pretty rough and warbly - although they are almost really good). You can imagine that world if you like...but in this world, a bearded sloppy internet hack is celebrating DAYS OF DECISION right now. Whatever, take it...it might be all you get.

19 May 2014


Just lowest common denominator noise-not-music vomiting out versions of Japanese chaos that was really just a ramped up reinterpretation of ENT and DISCHARGE. You can talk until you are blue in the face about how tired this sub-sub-genre is, but BRAIN CANCER fukkn crush it and distort the shit out of it and sometimes you just need your shit crushed so you put a tape like this on and it's so blown out that at times it almost just turns into white noise and that's totally fine. I think this is from a few years ago, I think they are from the Midwest (though I base that on not much more than a hunch), and the last track takes a while to get rolling but is the most interesting ditty on the demo - I'm not even suggesting that you need this, since you probably already have a dozen others just like it. But I am saying that I think there's a time for sounds like this, and for me....that time is 12:07 Monday morning.

18 May 2014


Fully charged late '90s Japanese hardcore that shows hints of US crust/hardcore influence. Only two songs here, but they are both pure burners.

17 May 2014


So here's the thing, and I am telling the truth here: Punk is awesome. Some things inside punk can sometimes be super lame, but as a whole thing, punk rules. OK? Good.

There are a bunch of other things that generally rule and include, but are certainly not limited to: 
1) This RAYOS X tape (vocals are way more strained and the whole thing is more blown out than previous efforts...going backwards suits the band well)
2) The POLISKITZO set I saw tonight (seriously, just.....yes)
3) The fact that last night I saw T.S.O.L. in the year 2014 (Grisham wore a sport coat, was a general douche, and seemed like he would rather be doing stand up comedy - and while the band was legit, I bet his stand up comedy would be better)
4) Punk (never mind the fact that a dude told me last night that his old punk vest was being sold in New York for $2K+ at some fashion place...just fuck people looking like punks that aren't. I mean, I have essentially never looked like a punk but I am, which is exactly why: fuck people who look like punks that aren't. Punk is not cool, that's the whole fukkn point. There were 30 people at the show tonight and it ruled. That's the whole goddamned point)
5) This tape.

16 May 2014


On the surface, these are primitive electronic/synth sounds, but FUNCTIONARY weave them together to create something that doesn't sound even remotely dated. Not far removed from GOBLIN and film soundtracks, but just as much in line with rudimentary dance music...classification is secondary when the aura is this demanding. On the one hand, if you told me this was a thirty minute chill out come down at the sunrise conclusion of a beach rave, then I wouldn't argue, but I feel like FUNCTIONARY are smarter and more calculated than that (even if they aren't, the tape still rules hard)...but on the other hand I feel a quiet focus that makes me believe that not a single blip or whirr is out of place here. A casual and subdued calculation perhaps...but listen to the segue from the fourth track to the 11 minute closer and you won't care what the motivation was - you'll just be glad that it exists.

In the world on "clueless and/or on-a-whim" purchases, this one lands on a pretty short list. Sitting in a tape bin full of mysteries at a shop in Baltimore, this one just seemed worth trying...glad I did.

15 May 2014


A killer under the radar ripper from 1988. Torrance's PKG are raw on the Roadtrip demo, but their early DC sensibilities crash into So Cal punk hooks in a most glorious way and the just-a-few-steps-above-boombox recording quickly becomes an asset. At their best when they are burning (of course), "Don't Blink," Sex w/Sadie" and the title track are the standouts, but the mid tempo shit is well worth diving into as well. The whole band is killer, but the vocals steal it - earnest adolescent enthusiasm is a hard thing to fake, and an even harder thing to deny. 

14 May 2014


I should know better, but I tend to spend a few hours before every trip and/or tour reloading some kind of digital music playing device with a new batch of killer jams meant as a soundtrack for my journey. I almost never listen to music while I'm on tour. So every time I come home from tour and/or a trip I have a digital music playing device filled with fresh and new jams to listen to while I commute or pump iron (mostly the former). Tonight on my ride home, I was reminded that '80s Spanish punk is really good, and that the 2013 full length from North Carolina's MIDNIGHT PLUS ONE is one of the most original sounding and totally amazing records I've heard in ages. I realized this after I came back from tour with the wax in tow a few months back, but there's nothing like biking between cars with a beer in your hand and being transported around the globe by "Catacombs" (sic) to kick you in the gut and remind you what it is you really need. Equal parts snotty post punk, '90s DIY/emo and a collision of grunge with current indie (seriously, it's all of those things), this is easily one of may favorite records in recent memory if only because it is more concerned with being and doing than with being awesome or doing what is expected. "Hallway" is a legitimate college radio slam dunk, "Anxious Snail" is CURRENT meets Gravity, and "Modern Witch" is just fukkn perfect (new millennium retro/goth/post punks take note). The guitars meander even when they lead, but the vocals are the obvious focus - breathy and intense while completely avoiding pretension....I could continue washing this record's hypothetical balls for a few more paragraphs or I could implore you to listen for yourself. I will opt for the latter, anyone who desires more hypothetical ball washing will need to send me a personal request.

13 May 2014


I'm not proud, and I don't see any reason to make shit up to make myself seem cooler than I actually am. The first time I knowingly heard BROKEN BONES was a couple of weeks ago when I ripped this tape my friend loaned me (and I only wanted it for the live SEPTIC DEATH that was on the flip side). The internet tells me that these tracks are from the Dem Bones record from 1984, and that the dudes that played guitar in DISCHARGE started this band. Don't worry, I've heard DISCHARGE.

12 May 2014


I saw these maniacs a few months ago at a bar down the street from my house....and then I went to see them in Oakland the next day. There's something about the way about a band feels that transcends the sound (even if the sound is awesome), and AGONIA nailed it. It was awkward, it was raw, and it was perfect. There's a tinge of goth that comes through on the tape that was perhaps absent live, maybe it was getting caught up in the moment or maybe it was ineptitude. The demo comes close - certainly close enough for those of you not fortunate enough to see this outfit in the flesh...

11 May 2014


This had to show up eventually, right? JUD JUD are the perfect example of what happens when an inside joke achieves full actualization. Even if you don't (think you) want to listen, you should download the link just to follow along with the lyrics sheet...every jud and jud is accounted for. "Dive Bomb Song" is still my favorite track by this duo, and the joke is still funny.

And after years of confusion, I was told that the title 'XAFIX' has nothing whatsoever to do with the band AFI. It was meant to be a play on a crucifix, but a straight edge crucifix, as in some kind of "nailed to the X" kind of thing. 

10 May 2014


If "Boredom" isn't the anthem for the new age of hardcore then I might have misunderstood this whole trend. Eight song in ten minutes spread mysteriously over two cassettes and presented in a dual cassette shell just like that live DEPECHE MODE was back in 1989 (possibly a coincidence, but I doubt it). This first struck me as some pure mutant shit, but further investigation reveals pure mongrels mangling sound with sincere purpose. There is a vision.

09 May 2014


There's no real point in my dishing out some abbreviated and scattered history of The People's Temple, but if you are not already familiar with this legitimately fascinating organization then I recommend you start reading up. Equal parts militia, cult and political machine, Jim Jones' cult of personality was a contentious force in the 1970s San Francisco political and social community winning over countless influential friends and allies (Harvey Milk, Angela Davis, Mayor George Moscone - whose 1976 election was largely due to nefarious "campaigning" by Jones' Temple - Assemblyman and future mayor Willie Brown among many others) before breaking ground on the doomed would-be utopia in Guyana. But in addition to political corruption, questionable sexual dominations, a message of racial harmony, mass suicide, and mind control under the guise of a noble Socialist ideal, The People's Temple also kicked out some serious grooves in 1973. The 12 track banger He's Able is full of traditional Southern christian gospel, but even the straightforward title track features screaming funk guitar leads in the background and parts of this record swing like an all out motherfukkr (I'm talking "Something Got A Hold Of Me" and "Walking With You" here). Not at all hard for me to see how going to a cult service and getting this shit dished out at full volume might swing a few non believers over to the dark side. And just when the child's choir wraps up the laid back disco-meets-Hair burner "Will You?" and you are feeling all blissed out....the nice folks who booted this gem onto cassette were nice enough to include the entire mass suicide from Guyana on the flip side. Oft sampled maniacal ramblings of a truly demented man lasting forty some odd minutes, the recordings of these doomed people and their chosen leader have made the rounds countless times but listening to Jones lead his followers to death is still beyond powerful. 

I call on you to stop this nonsense...no more pain. 

08 May 2014


It should surprise no one that, after a trip to Brasil, I am jump starting The Escape with some crucial Brasilian hardcore that you've never heard of. No need to feel slighted, I had never heard of DR. MOBRAL before a couple of weeks ago, and I'm guessing that most people outside of Brasil (or, dare I say, the state of Espírito Santo) still haven't...but holy fukkn shit do they need to. The connection between Finnish and Brasilian hardcore is well established, and it's painfully evident on these two tapes from the late '90s....discordant, damaged, manic hardcore that is equal parts VOID, TERVEET KADET and COLERA even though they came more than a full decade later. Both demos are included in the download (I've been gone for a coupla weeks, so I figure you punks are worth a double shot...right?), but I'm not picking favorites. The Onde Está Nossa Liberdade is a dozen songs, while the self titled banger makes its statement in less than half that many. I can assure you that these songs are not cool and/or hip in anything approaching a first world sort of way...but for those of you who like to have your ass handed to you by some unheralded maniacs that live really far from you? You know what to do.

For those who are interested, this band features Mozine from Läjä Records and MUKEKA DI RATO. He is a funny ass dude who was, essentially, exactly the same two weeks ago as he was when I met him twelve years ago. It's good to have friends like that.