30 June 2021

ZYFILIS



The first release from Malmö's ZYFILIS is a complete ripper. Every release from Malmö's ZYFILIS is a complete ripper, but the way the riffs just keep coming (and coming) and you know that is was the first shit? Like...what the fuck is gonna come next?!? (hint: it was more riffs). Beyond the riffs (seriously, they're worth even more attention than I'm giving them), ZYFILIS is all about Johanna's vocals; complete fucking ferocious intensity as they spit fire and fire and more fucking fire. The only respite on their self titled demo comes during the last track "Blodets Hav" - but it's a respite in the form of a midpaced squirmy one bass riff mosh part that draws out the inevitable with huge open guitar chords until it just fucking blows up. Like you know it would. And you can feel the room completely explode with it, even though you aren't in the room. This shit is real real good - and the records that followed might be even better. 
 


29 June 2021

GIL SCOTT-HERON with BRIAN JACKSON AND THE MIDNIGHT BAND

 


The endless trove of treasures left by the defunct Loathed Sound Department project keeps giving - every time I reach into their box of wonder, I unclench to find a handful of gold. Perhaps you only know "Whitey On The Moon" (and to be clear: you should know "Whitey On The Moon"), but I beg you to dig very deep into the world of Gil Scott-Heron if you haven't already. There's more to hear and know and learn in that world than you can imagine...so you can start today with this 1976 performance before you pull out Pieces Of A Man and Small Talk at 125th & Lennox (which you definitely need to do). 


28 June 2021

xATMx

 



There might be a guitar in there somewhere, the kick drum drops out when the blasts kick in, check the singer gurgle "LET'S GO!" before the stomp that closes "Hit The Trash" - I'll take these five minutes of raw straight edge power violence all day long over mindless bullshit destruction presented as rage. 

ALL THIS MURDER

==============
I'm fine with ignorant hardcore.
Ignorance in hardcore is a different matter. 
If you know better, do better. 
If you don't know better...then that's separate issue entirely. 
Keep the ignorance in the riffs, and out of the scene. 
=================




27 June 2021

GORDY

 
Another reminder that there were few (no) rules in the DIY 1990s - proficiency was optional and strict adherence to still developing subgenres was rare. While the more visible (audible) scenes in some of the trend setting regions (I'm talking NY and Oakland, really), those influences that would define a band's sound today, might just subtly steer a band's sound in one direction or another. The kids in GORDY likely shared a few East Bay punk tapes, but I'm guessing they were just as enamored with the DIY punk scene in Wisconsin, where they were from. Just some kids, taking a little of this and a little of that from whatever they could get their hands on, and banging out their own kind of punk...because they could. Is "Cute 'lil Fuckheads" a good song? Nah, it sucks. What about "Beautiful Conscience" or the instrumental ripper "3 Ninjas" or the other tracks where GORDY pulls it off? Yeah, those tracks rule. Imagine DAMITOL (Milwaukee) with a less technically proficient SCHLONG...if nothing else, GORDY feels familiar, like you already know them, even though you don't quite know what they're going to do. 



26 June 2021

DESPERATOR



A healthy dose of ripping Swedish grind/metal/crust to start your weekend, because....who doesn't wan't a healthy dose of ripping Swedish grind/metal/crust to start their weekend? Thirteen cuts, ranging from '90s hardcore influenced smashers like "I Am Failing" and "Jennie Tolls" to pure fucking grinders like "There Is No Place In Hell." Check the song titles and you can see that there are tongues firmly in cheek here (I'm thinking "Anyone Want A Dildo?" and "Jurassic Dork," as examples), but the chops are real, the high/low vocals are brutal, and it's all gone in less than a quarter hour. And besides, who doesn't like to have a little fun on the weekend?
 

GREATEST HUMILIATIONS



25 June 2021

SKATE ATTACK!



One could argue that the second (third?) wave of fastcore revival that came in the late 2000s was initially centered around East Coast labels like To Lie A Lie and Give Praise. Conveniently, Skate Attack! vol.1 was co-released by both labels...and conveniently today is 6/25 - the date most often associated with the label most often associated with the first (second?) revival that really kicked off around the turn of the century. There's a connection in there somewhere, I promise. Thirty minutes of trash here, from ANS, XFADESX, COMMON ENEMY, MEDIA CIRCUS, BAIL OUT! and others - while The Cool Kids of North America were concerned with full stacks and Swedish leads, these are the die hards who were circle pitting, flipping up their caps and aping HALF OFF. Thankfully, here at Terminal Escape, we (heartily) endorse flipped up caps, full stacks, circle pits and Swedish leads with equal fervor. 

24 June 2021

THE STYLISTICS



The smooth croons of THE STYLISTICS will indeed make you feel brand new when the harp accent sends you into the second half of the verse in "Tu Me Haces Sentrime Nuevo," and this Spanish pressing just keeps on giving after that. You know the moments; cruising slow on a warm night, necking under a tree (I never did that as a kid, but it is a thing that happened for - and to - a lot of adolescents). Like East Side Story but for the East Coast set - the '70s trying desperately to hold onto the sonic '60s with subtle funk guitars, falsettos and sweeping studio presentations. The appeal of so-called "oldies" is obvious, understandable, and wholly logical. I still want to grind, and I don't want to live in a world without DBeat, neanderthal stomps and harsh electronic manipulations, but then "Terminar Para Empezar" comes on and Russell Thompson, Jr. croons "break up to make up, that's all we do...first you love me then you hate me, that's a game for fools" and it all just kinda breaks down for a minute.

LO MEJOR DE THE STYLISTICS 
Your lips and my lips - what more is there to say?

23 June 2021

LONGINGS

 

What hits me about LONGINGS is the feeling that I'm listening to some kids bashing out a dark, post punk rehash, even while I know that I'm listening to some adults harvest from their own rev summer roots. And in the end it's both, which is what makes this short lived project resonate. "In Essence" is like Juju-era Siouxsie reimagined by harDCores...or Wayne Hussey fronting EMBRACE...and the songs are sharp, hard, powerful, even (especially) while guitar hooks like the one in "Trapped" grab you and sink into your skin. There are only four songs here (and only six more on the 12" that followed), but damn...they are just right.

LONGINGS

22 June 2021

CRUELTY BOMB



I hope y'all were paying attention while Suckblood existed. The label cranked out maybe half a dozen tapes, I rarely saw them pop up in distros, and my order took a solid six weeks to arrive (from Los Angeles)...I challenge anyone to come up with a more venerable roster in the last decade. The KRIGSHODER tape seemed to make everyone pay attention (and rightly so), but holy shit these five tracks from CRUELTY BOMB are just stunners. A product of their environment perhaps, this tape is pure Scandi-DBeat tempered with loose '80s Southern California hardcore. The pace is insane, the riffs are relentless, and the drums will have you scraping your jaw off the floor. Check the fills in "Rigged" - they take a screaming (but simple) two riff/one bridge DBeat song and turn it into an absolute monster. Then the guitar does the same thing to "Atrocities" a few seconds later. Five and half minutes...that's all you get. Because that's all they needed. 



21 June 2021

THINK FAST



Second wave fastcore revival form Phoenix, THINK FAST ripped their way through the mid-'00s and left a small but solid collection of vinyl slabs in their wake. Someone was nice enough to throw them all onto a tape, and you can hear the (partied) records popping between blasts....a nice touch. You've got the entirety of the 2000s packed into these 26 minutes - touches of "bigger" and more anthemic 'core, pure blasting thrash, determined positive hardcore, and a near constant flurry of riffs and jump parts. Shit just makes me feel good. 

THINK FAST  


20 June 2021

BENCHMARK



For the thousandth time: 1990s DIY hardcore rules. Bands took their influences and used them instead of aping them, and sounds spread as slowly as the letters mail so those influences had time to develop. And in places like Arkansas (or, in my case, Oklahoma), those influences were more spread out, more varied, and they were simply harder to come by...so bands had to make it happen. And often what the made was a whole far removed from any of its parts (or even from the people who made them). BENCHMARK were all of those things, and the result was fierce, emotional and personal hardcore - hoarse screaming about animal rights and sexual assault and they left everything in the room when they played. The chugs are formidable and the vocals are deadly (check "Tickle" in particular), and it all just feels fucking honest. For folks concerned about such things, three dudes in this band would later form BURNED UP BLED DRY, and one was in FROM ASHES RISE for the first two full lengths....yeah, the '90s weren't half bad.


19 June 2021

WENDELL MEW



Folks who've been in the Bay Area long enough might remember Wendell Mew's presence, even if they never knew his name. Dude would wail on his sax in BART stations in the '90s, but apparently he had a storied past on the political fringes, and as an attorney who stopped practicing law in favor of making and playing music. Basically, do a few internet searches (or just use this one - sums it up nicely) and it's easy to see that Mew is (or was?) a true outsider, driven by...something. But doubtlessly driven. I don't know the source of this collection of tunes, but on these live recordings he leads a group that moves effortlessly between hard bop, futurism and wild free jazz for over 90 minutes. Pay attention to the flute solo that starts around the 48 minute mark...listen intently and tell me you don't feel that shit. 
 


18 June 2021

CAN YOU SEE THE SHIT



A powerful batch of '80s UK punk on this early Mental Tapes compilation. The DEVOID tracks are straight up gold, and worth way more than the effort it will take you to download this comp...fortunately you get even more. OBSCENE FEMALES and INSTIGATORS are known entities, but you'll have to dig a fair bit deeper to find most of the others. POISON JUSTICE had a tape on the S.A.S. folks' label (a tape that I want to find, by the way), P@X were new to me and have a nice dark THE MOB vibe. VICTIMS OF RIDICULE are primitive and inept, while searching for XOSET U.K. and ANARCHIST ANGELS only led me to scores more early comp tapes that I now need to hear (fuck) and KERES is a complete mystery, but their sole track "Inquisition" is a raw two-riff UK punk (by way of STOOGES) stomp with a fucking filthy lead around the 1:30 mark. All this collection does is make me want to know more, make me want to hear more. So just keep listening while I keep searching. 
 
===========================

17 June 2021

SLOW POISON

 

Brilliantly calculated noise presented in two movements. 2008's Removal Ceremony rolls over you in excruciatingly measured waves before pulling you into its murk, very much an involuntary immersion via submergence. The patience required for proper listening can only be matched by the patience required for creation...experience the complete dissolve just after the eight minute mark of the second movement, and feel Oppermann (POST-MORTERM JUNKIE, ARAM CHAOS, others) and Greh (HIVE MIND, PUBLIC EXECUTION, others) conjure the piece back to life. Intensity is increased not by volume or chaos, but by careful deliberation, as the duo spend one-half hour dragging the sound into different (figurative) rooms, sonic experimentation in a controlled environment. I want this recording to unleash, but it's brilliant specifically because it never does. 


16 June 2021

CUTRE



Buenos Aires' CUTRE has been quietly and consistently cranking out hardcore rippers since their 2018 debut. Well, it's only quiet if you're listening wrong...or not paying attention...but the quality is definitely consistent. The four slammers here are a perfect deconstruction of a (perfect) hardcore band, from the maxxxed out downstroke guitar attack that starts ""Furioso" to the scaled back two riff stomp "La Negacion" - the longest track by far at a whopping 1:37. The only problem with this self titled demo is the length, because when something hits you this hard and winds you up this tight, you're gonna want more than four minutes of action. 

15 June 2021

EUROTICS

 

Is sounds like this (relatively) short lived Richmond, Virginia project just took all of the punk and crammed it in a blender. You can hear the blue album, you can hear Walk Among Us, you can hear THE DRONES, you can hear L.A.M.F. - but it's all kinda runny. Because it was in a blender, remember?

EUROTICS

14 June 2021

ACID SPERM

 

Sometimes you need to look behind the joke to find the shred. Sure, "Ed Has A Glass Eye" and "Hairy Burrito's" can be a little tough to take seriously, but underneath the shrill Brecht-meets-Dart vocals you can find primitive foundations for what could have become a demonic crossover thrash masterpiece. Of course that never happened, and while we listen to "Acid Groove (Waffle Iran In My Pants)," we are left to listen for diamonds that would have been...instead of diamonds that were.

13 June 2021

THE FLATULENTS

 

An East Bay one-off, recorded at Gilman (as it should be) by Tim (Lint?) in 1994. Which is exactly what it sound like. Fierce vocals ripped from the grooves of BLACK FORK and/or BLATZ records, guitars have that clean-on-speed hyper jangle (a la Jasper Thread sometimes), and the rhythm section barely holds the damn thing together. In any just world, "I'll Git An Abortion If I Wanna" would be a standard go-to of the (sub)genre and old heads would talk of THE FLATULENTS when people started talking about bands like CCTV and LIQUIDS, as if to say "buddy - if you like that, then you're gonna love this." Clearly, however, the world we inhabit is far from just. 

Other highlights: the weird guitar bendy in the chorus of "Crazzy Tow Truck Driver" and the part when the guitar drops out of "Quiz Show." Also, the fact that the first song is called "Flatulents On The Move." Basically, this thing is just a glorious mess. 



12 June 2021

KRANG



Chicago's KRANG were more a sum of their parts on the first demo. The high/low vocals are straight Minneapolis crust, the tinny MetalZone guitar totally shouldn't work (but oooohhhhh it certainly does) and the drums hit this "almost-DBeat but also too fast for stench" sweet spot. Throw in solos like one near the end of "Oubliette" and the utterly relentless speed chug of "Heading For Internal Dankness," then pump the volume accordingly. KRANG dropped a slew of vinyl slabs before calling it quits in 2016, but if you don't have the The Bog Of Eternal Stenchcore EP at your disposal, I recommend Onward, Desolation... for your evening fist banging session.

ONWARD, DESOLATION... 


11 June 2021

GUITAR IN GOLD



A gloriously schmaltzy set of '70s instrumentals with guitar leads. Closer to melancholy Montenegro soundtracks than the cheese of Guitar Moods-style series that fill thrift store bins....but it's close. Hawaiian Herb Ohta shares space with Belgian Francis Goya and Japanese/French ripper Claude Ciari (whose cover of "Summer Night" is the soundtrack to the worst burlesque routine you've never wanted to see). For some reason, this bootleg from Singapore has seven fewer tracks than the Indonesian bootleg by the same name, but includes a random edit of a Lonnie Smith track that didn't make the original. None of this information is important, of course, but Sonny James' "Maria Elena" kinda sounds like a 1980s Willie Nelson cut or a weird instrumental rendition of Patsy Cline's "She's Got You." 

10 June 2021

KNOW YOUR ROLE



Thick necked, ham fisted, late 200s East Coast hardcore. Listen to them lurch into fastcore on the eponymous opener and you fukkn know you're about to get into the mix. Look at the rest of the lineup and see "Spin Kicks For Christ," "Noodle Ass Dude," and "I Don't Like You" and take up a deep breath. It's everything you think it's going to be.
 
CASHIN' CHECKS AND SNAPPIN' NECKS 

09 June 2021

THE T.V. DINNERS // UNDONE

 

Meandering and wistful Japanese emo sharing space with rough, chaotic Japanese emo. Like on tour there in 2001, when we played with 1000 TRAVELS OF JAWAHARLAL and then we played with ENVY are few days later. But we also played with 324 and FUCK ON THE BEACK on the same tour....hardcore is awesome. 


08 June 2021

NO LIMBS

 

The good: Full bodied and massive US hardcore punk - emotive and intense vocals and a dark underbelly turned towards the listener. When "Mind Vise" kicked in for the first time I was all like "ooooh yeah, I feel this right now" and then I bumped up the volume. 
The less good: If your band is gonna cover "Mr. Suit," please remember that you don't just have the (flawless) original to content with - you also have to measure up to this: "Mr. Suit."


07 June 2021

PLAIN WRAP

 



Another excellent example of why you should look past the cool shit and check out all the good shit that ain't cool. A trading relic that plops two (of the the three?) PLAIN WRAP demos on one tape - tracks that the folks at Bootleg CDs R Us Dot Com dropped onto a disc with MOX NIX in the 90s...tracks that deserve better than a legacy as a third rate EuroBoot in a bargain bin. Snappy, snotty, catchy, ripping Southern California hardcore punk circa 198something (ish). "There Is No God" was on a fukkn tape with SIEGE, CRUDE SS, TARNFARBE, MOB 47, WRETCHED and SVART FRAMTID, and "Punk Rock" opens the first Killed By 7 Inch comp...please tell me how much more validation you fukkrs need?

"Punk Rock, Punk Rock, Punk Rock, Punk Rock, Punk Rock, Punk Rock, Punk Rock Punk Rock...
...Fuck that commercial radio bullshit: This Is Punk Rock!"

06 June 2021

(unknown)

 

A gorgeous piece of experimentation from an unknown source, this cassette will appeal to fans of the Ripping Stars From The Sky tape from a few weeks back. The first side starts with a resigned melancholy, quiet low end distortion riding waves beneath floating ethereal guitars - the sounds of distant yearning. There are moments that sound just a few degrees removed from early new age experimentation but the recording moves steadily towards an ominous end as it progresses, each track seemingly darker than the next. The low end takes a stronger roll on the fourth movement, with hesitant open notes from the guitar starting to overpower the sublime while the guitar fades to a whimper. And by the sixth movement, darkness has won...a distant, rumbling bass dominates, and then takes over completely for the 13+ minute final piece. This unnamed presentation is as much reflective as it is enjoyable - reflection, even when beneficial, is not necessarily comfortable - and leaves me feeling open. Or maybe just empty. 

Should go without saying, but any additional information regarding the source of this cassette or the artist/s who created it is very (very) welcome. 

05 June 2021

WARSH


I've hyped WARSH before, and I stand by my previous accolades. But still.....this tape rips so fucking hard. It's like the first two tapes were just a warm up, just them getting everything in line to lay absolute waste to the Atlantic Provinces with the brilliantly titled E.P. II. Four forceful hardcore punk stomps, shrouded in vocals delivered with a shrill intensity that is just exhausting. Oh...and they got faster too. Fukk, I want to see this band so bad.