31 July 2016


Perfect old school youth crew from Texas. The riffs, the backing gang vocals, the breakdowns....if this is your shit then you couldn't really ask for much more. 

Note: This demo is meant to have six songs, but my B-side is blank. You get what I get, punks...

30 July 2016


Look out....genuine Bay Area freek show headed your way. FALSE SACRAMENT is equal parts ASBESTOS DEATH, VICTIMS FAMILY and ZAPPA, and is likely unlistenable to most. But I am not here for most - I am here for YOU. I mean, I don't know who you are, but I want you to be OK with digging these sounds. It's OK. Trust me. At the very least, I mean well. These mutants relocated to San Francisco from Virginia in the late '80s and, if this tape is any indicator, by 1993 their freak flag was flying at full mast. Those vocals though....

29 July 2016


Do you remember when I used to post compilation and mix tapes every Friday? Yeah, those things take long time to edit and I'm on fukkn vacation. You know what doesn't take too long to edit? Raging Minneapolis crust. You know what sounds killer while I'm on vacation? Raging Minneapolis crust. You know what GEIGER COUNTER do? They play raging Minneapolis crust. And I thank them for that. 

28 July 2016


The real thing about this demo is not so much what it is. What it is is off kilter determined hardcore punk from four Chicago women who are wrecking shit. But what I hear is roots....because I feel like COCHINA are just getting started, and I feel like this shit is gonna grow into something deadly. "Cerdos" and "Complejo de Salvador Blanco" would make a legendary 45...but I'm just gonna wait (not so) patiently for the next chapter. Until then, there are five bangers here that will keep you on edge. 

27 July 2016


Sit down. Breath deep. Look inward. Get weird. 
This is a world that is mysterious to most (myself included). You want to ask (yourself? someone? anyone? and expert? the authorities? The Artsit?) what is happening. what is the motivation. what do you want from me. WHY....why do I keep returning? But I return. To sounds of digital collisions and audio manipulation. And I don't leave...because I can't. And I don't want to leave - (headphones recommended) -  I want to return.

26 July 2016


The connection between catchy Oi! and infectious dark punk makes sense. I mean, BLITZ demonstrated thirty years ago that you could take streetpunk guitar leads and turn them into brooding dangly earring licks with nothing more than a foot switch. TUMBAS hail from Bogotá and they nail this transition on their four song demo....I'm assuming this is Paula from DEAD HERO handling the vocals because it sounds just like her [edit: it's not], which only solidifies the whole StreetGoth connection. This one has teeth, and the only thing that broods is the presentation - these goth punks will knock you on your ass. 

25 July 2016


Below this text, lurking behind the green highlighted text that says CONTROL GROUP, you will find five of the noisiest, most fukkd sounding minutes ever shared on The Escape. I know I've said before (many times) that bands are taking the noise punk thing to new heights, but this one is something different. There are songs in there...(somewhere)...but it's like they are breaking everything in an AM radio broadcast studio trying desperately to be heard. The mosh part in "Junk" is the thing that madness is made of. CONTROL FROUP is fukkn insane. 

24 July 2016


Snagged this in February at the Still Not Quiet On The Western Front gig in San Francisco. Smart, ripping hardcore from Seattle who are even better than this (excellent) cassette would lead you to believe. The only thing missing from these six songs is the attitude that they project on stage - fierce and hard blasting '10s hardcore rage with just a tender touch of early SoCal seeping out of the riffs. Not very much...just enough. Break shit.

23 July 2016


Short and sweet today, punks: MACHO BOYS are from Portland. MACHO BOYS rule hard. MACHO BOYS are important. MACHO BOYS are not what you think. MACHO BOYS are doing it right. I want to be on the MACHO BOYS team. MACHO BOYS. 

22 July 2016


John sent me this one a while back, and upon an initial listen I decided that I needed to spend serious time with BITCHCRAFT. Some bands you can put on and blast a song or two and be all like "yeah, shit bangs, I'm into it." But sometimes you hear a band and it gives you pause - you think "this is going to require some effort." Now, in Thee Busy Lives Ov Millennial Humans there isn't always time for that effort and as a result some brilliance with be unavoidably overlooked. That was the case with BITCHCRAFT until a couple of weeks ago....better late than never. And I want to thank Thee Sounds Ov Bitchcraft for their patience...patience that was rewarded with my undivided attention. For thirty one glorious minutes, and then again for thirty one more, these sounds sunk into me, and now they are here for good, building a permanent foundation upon subsequent listens. Witchy, dark, determined - powerfully earnest, BITCHCRAFT crank out track after track of pure magic. There are few bands I would compare to Brazil's RAKTA, but these Tulsa, Oklahoma women are in that league. I thank you, BITCHCRAFT...you were worth the wait. 

21 July 2016


Filthy '90s Brasilian grind/crust. Ripping fasts, searing blasts, multiple vocals and pure raw attack. Choice banger: "Gasolina," if only because when they scream the word it sounds like a very real threat. 

20 July 2016


True freeks turning punk sounds into mangled space-fi noise. In the world of demented noise punk and people trying so hard to be noisier and more chaotic and more distorted than everyone else, Ottawa's SCHIZOPHASIA are so very far out there that comparisons are useless. Bypassing virtually all of the punk this time around and embracing noise and aural hallucinations with equal vigor, 5000 is on another plane entirely, and serves as a perhaps predictable progression from previous releases (all recommended). Antiracist anarcho/industrial/mutant/NOISE. Indescribably weird...

19 July 2016


Five songs. Eight minutes. Wild style Japanese hardcore with heavy '80s DC and Thrash2K influences. The demo is titled Exciting & Super Real, and for good reason. File alongside period comrades like OUTLAST, JELLYROLL ROCKHEADS and TOTAL FURY -pure cream from start to finish...

18 July 2016


Anyone who pays attention has likely heard about the recent passing of MISCHIEF BREW's Erik Petersen. His presence as a musician and a personality is impossible to overstate, and he will be missed terribly. MISCHIEF BREW played Berkeley last summer, and Karoline and I were for some stupid reason "too busy" or "too tired" to make it to the show. Whatever the excuse was, it seems beyond foolish today as I think about the gracious and understanding response from Erik when I wrote to say we wouldn't be seeing him....my heart goes out to my Philadelphia friends, and especially for Denise (and the pugs!).

Shared several years ago on The Escape, this 2009 collaboration between Erik and GUIGNOL is one of my favorite MISCHIEF BREW related releases (though The Stone Operation probably takes the cake). 

At countless SUBHUMANS and CITIZEN FISH gigs over the years (we first crossed paths on the first SUBHUMANS reunion tour in 1998), Erik would talk about how he hoped he would get to see CULTURE SHOCK someday. Not only did he see them, but he shared the stage for "Civilization Street," a track famously covered by Erik over the years. I saw this video for the first time a few hours before Karoline called me from the CULTURE SHOCK tour to tell me about Erik's death. I watched the video several more times that evening. Mimicking Dick's hand and arm motions at the 0:22 mark...still makes me smile, even with tears in my eyes. 

Philadelphia, 2011
photo: Nick Vadala

17 July 2016


It's been a few years since I pulled this one out, and Trauma is still an absolute monster. Oppressively dark and epic late '90s Polish hardcore with drawn out forays into ambient and improvisational interludes (someday, let's talk about how the horns in "Blind Love" should not work, but work so damned well, and when the vocals join the madness after the jam in the middle...the intensity is sublime) offering little respite from the power. Deadly, searing high register vocals and comparisons (flattering) to Word As Law-era NEUROSIS and '90s Per Koro metalcore are both justified and well earned, but I think that KRZYCZ hold up brilliantly on their own. As with most '90s Polish stuff, this one is pretty easy to track down on wax if you keep your eyes open...and I suggest that you do. 

16 July 2016


When punks decide to play shamelessly catchy indie/punk, The Punks are supposed to shame them...right? Listen to these tracks and fukkn TRY to deny them. I dare you. You will fail. They will suck you in. You will fail....and these songs will become a part of you. And then you will be a winner. Vocals are almost on a John K. Samson level (yeah, I know, but they are that endearing), and the ability to write a perfect pop song in less than two minutes and then just leave it there - because that's all you need? That's a special thing, kids, and it will keep you coming back to these tracks over and over again. Groovy and friendly and very very sweet. We need these things sometimes. 

15 July 2016


Ruff and tumble hardcore punk with one clean ass K-Town guitar jangling up the joint. Remember how AMDI PETERSEN dropped and we were all like "this sounds like '80s USHC....but kinda different but I can't put my finger on exactly how." Well, these Oklahoma City freeks make me feel all like "this sounds like København circa '01and NYHC at the same time and I don't understand how that makes sense and understand even less how it works but it does. IT TOTALLY FUKKN WORKS!" So there you go...another bunch of words strung together by your host (me) that don't tell you anything more than this: Do The Thing. As always, you will thank me. The dream: LIFE AS ONE

14 July 2016


It would seem that the most ignorant forms of underground music are the ones that become universal. Enter knuckle dragging slam/hardcore circa 1997...from Malaysia. But the drums groove just right, the double kick is on point, and that beatdown pogo beat in "Spiral Youth"? Yeah...that's what's up. As much as I wanted "Sick Of You" to be a GWAR cover, the fact that it sounds like How Will I Laugh-era SUICIDAL mixed with Blood, Sweat & No Tears-era SICK OF IT ALL...? Well, that more than makes up for the lack of GWAR. Primal, guttural metallic hardcore. Thank me later. Actually....thank me now.

13 July 2016


Four creamers. Eight minutes. Redlined UK hardcore with vocals pushed beyond any reasonable version of belief. Easy to imagine this shit going off the rails live, and you will definitely want to fukk with the guitar in "Insanity Of War." Actually, you're just going to want to fukk with the whole damn tape. Not one second of bullshit contained in today's download. You're welcome.

12 July 2016


Last weekend when STERILE MIND did a little mini-tour, and we ended in ridiculous fashion...a small and mysteriously fun show in Vancouver, then we drove 16 hours to Santa Rosa, California for an afternoon show in the park. We wanted to play another gig, to be sure, but my main motivation for hauling ass was to see this Colombian band in the flesh. DEAD HERO's brand of Oi! is so simple...and it's so right. Every track is an anthem, every guitar lead is perfectly flanged and on fukkn point, every chorus makes you want to put a fist in the air....and I wanted my fist in the air. The drive was long and I kinda didn't think we were gonna make it, but when Jordan replied to my inquiry and let me that while we were 20 miles out, DEAD HERO were just setting up, I leaned my foot in a little harder.....the plan was working. And the overnight was more than worth it for the 20 minutes of punk that we saw in the park. It was everything it was supposed to be - perfectly crafted tracks that could inspire the most jaded. Saw them and their tourmates FINAL two days later in SF to a mostly empty full El Rio while the cool kids chilled at the JJ DOLL gig up the block (worthwhile gig mind you, JJ DOLL killed it...but  DEAD HERO started after they were finished, and what fool doesn't walk a block to see a Colombian punk band? Most of San Francisco, apparently...), and they were, not surprisingly, even better than at the outside gig in the park. Fukkn flawless, in fact. These tracks are going to get into you, my friends...and California denizens have two more days to catch them on tour (if I wasn't playing a show tonight then I would hitch a ride to Sacramento my own damn self).

11 July 2016


All hail the mufukkn bargain bin. Last week in Seattle, two of my finest dollars earned me this NUCLEAR WITCH cassette. That's 16 minutes of pure filth for less than the price of a mediocre beer in most major metropolitan area meat markets. See? BARGAIN. NUCLEAR WITCH are a fukkn mess....feedback, noise, shitty recording pegged in the red, random leads, (hopefully) satanic and (likely) inappropriate knuckle dragging noise/metal. Raw and relentless...I don't know anything about them, and it's probably best that way. Get weird, my friends.

Shit - I searched anyway, and apparently this noise is from Wisconsin. Color me intrigued...

10 July 2016


Frantic NWI bangers, reminding us why Rust Belt is king. Six bursts of classic maximum energy raw and nasty USHC in just six minutes, kicking rehash culture in the teeth with thrift store combat boots. Just enough twang to get the garage punkers off their asses (I'm talking "Worn Away" here, punks) to show the stuff up fashion mafiosos that being a punk means sometimes you gotta get a little wild and mess up your hair. And the riffs? Fukk, man, these mutants cram a double LP discography's worth into these brain melting bangers. This is all you want today.

09 July 2016


Crazy addictive, and far more upbeat and animated than 2014's Commute, this offering from DISMAL LIGHT combines hypnotic repetition and subtly inventive beats to create a mysterious minimal techno/psych/trance hybrid. Get way deep into this one, punks...the mastery of The Simple Things is something to marvel at all times, and only emulate when appropriate. 

This was a part of Ascetic House's "January Program" project in 2014...would love to have the entire series if anyone's holding.

08 July 2016


Maximum energy, minimum fidelity Spanish language pogo punk is fukkn king today. 

07 July 2016


Sometimes, as much as it shames me to admit it (not really), I want a killer song. Like one with a catchy chorus and a bridge, maybe even a few tasty guitar licks....and there's gotta be a singer that I can try to sing along with (and fail) when no one is listening. All noise all the time.....? Well that just means that the noise doesn't really have any oomph anymore, right? Enter Singapore's DAILY RITUAL. Actually, this entry is a couple of years old, and they've since released an EP, a full length on Sabotage/4490, and a recent split with THE STOPS. The kids have been busy, and they are cranking out the stuff that I want. Comparisons to OBSERVERS, NEON PISS, RED DONS are not at all out of line here...enjoy your day. 

06 July 2016


Snotty snarling hardcore with a sleazy garage rock presentation. Saw these fools in Oklahoma earlier this year and they killed - was not at all disappointed by this tour demo, but I confess that the Ex-Static tape is even better. Three tracks here, and one of them is a POISON IDEA cover...I steer you wrong so rarely, so just do the thing, ok?

05 July 2016


Pure and complete damage. Slow motion and excruciating. Industrial carnage, analog distortion and waves of manic sound, all carefully constructed, layers and presented for your discomfort. This 2010 release is an extremely harsh toke. 

04 July 2016


This should probably be on Escape Is Terminal, but I don't really have to ask permission to break my own rules, so fukk it. Two fiery political hardcore acts from early '00s Venezuela. @PATIA NO traveled the world and did splits with just about everyone (we played with them several times on my first Euro tour...including the show in Holland where the drummer got so pumped he threw himself against the wall behind him...the wall that was actually a door...a door that flew open and sent him careening backwards down the stairs to the pavement below). Perhaps lesser known, DOÑAMALDAD are bare bones hardcore with a slight rock 'n roll tinge to the guitars. Both bands' live energy is captured with studio quality. So for Amerikka's birthday, listen to some Venezuelan punk and read the fukkn news from time to time....because the shit is heavy.