30 March 2023



Holy shit this tape has aged well. Just as the new century dawned, at the intersection of DOOMSDAY HOUR, DYSTOPIA and SCARRED FOR LIFE came KÖNTRAKLÄSSE, a Long Beach juggernaut that was arguably greater than the mere sum of their parts. Think G-ANX, SUNDAY MORNING EINSTEINS, UNCURBED...formed in the image of the Swedish maters, this is pure and unfiltered kång. I saw them at Gilman Street and even my memory doesn't do this tape justice. Somehow there are only four songs and somehow those four songs have never been put to wax, which defies all logic. 

29 March 2023


Someone else knows more that I do...but CONTORTION SESSION were a late '80s hardcore skate punk band from Houston and this ten song demo fukkn slams. Groove on the primal metallic stomp of "The Reaper Awaits." Cringe at the homophobic lyrics to "Anti-Fashion."  Imagine yourself surrounded by a bunch a sweaty neanderthals...the third generation tape even sounds muggy, just like it should.


28 March 2023



I've listened to this a few times recently, and it's one of those recordings that is nearly impossible (for me) to consume casually. You can put it on while you're doing something else, just because you like sound and you need to have sound in your life (tinnitus is a motherfukkr, y'all), but you'll find (I find) that soon the 'something else' just fades away and you're left with Max Roach on the drums and Artie Shepp on the saxophone and they're just speaking to you in a language that you can't quite understand...but you listen. Because you want to learn. You want to learn their language because you need to understand what they are saying but you know that you will never NEVER never be in that place with them much less be on that plane with them. A stunning encapsulation of two masters at the top of their game in Paris, released in 1976 and referred to as Sweet Mao. Imagine a sound so powerful that the song titles alone are political statements. Imagine two people so completely consumed by the moment that they each know what the other is going to do with no communication beyond sound in the moment. Yet another example of why I am grateful for the now-defunct Loathed Sound label....

27 March 2023



In a very real sense, THY INFERNAL is everything that yesterday's ARGUMENT? post is not. Released in 1997 at the very front end of the first real wave of USBM, Satan's Wrath is a fully realized searing black metal assault, absolutely massive and bleak in every way. Guitar melodies drive the title track, a minor solo driven by punishing double bass before the return of the verse and a chorus of demonic screams. The ungodly crunch during the first half of "Our Past Victories" defies all sonic logic, because sound is simply not meant to be this fukkn sketchy and/or evil. But THY INFERNAL are both. There are only four songs here, all of which were rerecorded for their full length released in 1999 (also titled Satan's Wrath)...brace yourself.

* For the dedicated few, I will note that the band includes VITAL REMAINS, IOMMI STUBBS and IMMOLATION in their thanks list. If you're one of those dedicated few, then you'll understand why I mention it...

26 March 2023



The absence of rules is what's supposed to keep this shit interesting, right? Like a cloudy anarcho punk troupe from Los Angeles, a dual vocal trio with no guitar and only occasional blips and whirrs to augment the ploppy bass and forceful, thoughful (read: forcefully thought filled) lyrics that dominate this first tape. ARGUMENT? do not seem even remotely interested in writing (or performing) anything even close to a song, much less a hit song - the title track that closes this 2016 tape leaves me almost frustrated...and interested. In other words: it worked. 

25 March 2023



After 4700+ posts, I feel like I should give myself the latitude to create absurd new subgenre descriptors from time to time, and I will take advantage of that latitude now. Since the early 2000s, Washingtons AT JENNIE RICHIE have cranked out dozens of releases with titles like Rectums Merging and Maximum Minimalism, perfecting and then manipulating their surrealist psycho-industrial ambience into new and disparate sound amalgamations with each recording. 2005's Absurd Machine Drama came near the beginning of their journey - two subdued and understated sonic excursions that fill just over one quarter hour with a murky presence. There is more (there is so much more) but I recommend that you start slow, because AT JENNIE RICHIE will prove more than happy to overwhelm the aggressive visitor. 

24 March 2023



Mind melting Midwest thrash assault. Brookfield, Wisconsin denizens ACROPHET would wrap the decade with two full length discs on Triple X Records (where they were overshadowed by bands like JANE'S ADDICTION, D.I. and MIND OVER 4), but you won't be surprised to hear that this demo session captures the band at their most primal. Seven determined apocalypse thrashers land like COC smoking Hell Awaits in the fast lane, almost like they recognize the limitations of the relatively (but appropriately) primitive recording and compensate by playing everything harder...and faster. I have to think that every suburban enclave had their ACROPHET in 1987, but I have a hard time imagining that all of them raged this hard.

Friends of The Escape did a very nice reissue of this tape for folks interested in a physical copy. Those folks (and folks interested in BUTTHOLE SURFERS and ANTI-STATE CONTROL tapes or HICKEY photozines) are encouraged to click HERE