29 February 2024



I've listened to these five songs on repeat for about an hour now and I still don't really have any (of the right) words. It's not that FEVER DREAM delivered the best recording of 2012, but damn it sure sticks with me. I think back to other bands of the era, and I can easily see FEVER DREAM alongside WHITE LUNG, DASHER and/or OBSERVERS, but the grit is undeniable and leans more on the side of New York's adaptations of the Region Rock that dominated the previous decade. They are (were) truly a sum of their parts, and it's a shame these songs are all that they left...but there's also something special about really being able to spend time with a really good batch of songs, so I'm going to appreciate what I have. 

28 February 2024


 Mystic drone meets with cacophonous improvisation, urged forward through a sonic mist by hesitant percussion. A dark industrial churn emerges with strings mingling with electronics and....and those drums that seem integral to and completely separate from the rest of the sounds. Sometimes the coordinated swells and breaths are the only thing holding A HANDFUL OF DUST together at all, but most of the time it feels like 'togetherness' is the furthest thing from their collective conscious. The artist and its two members (Bruce Russell and Alastair Galbraith) were both new to me before I scrounged this tape, but discovering their world/s of sound has been wonderful. Pull up a chair, you know? Stay a while. 

27 February 2024



When the kids say that something is "fire" it confuses me, because fire is a noun, not an adjective. You can use "fiery" as a descriptor, but....well, it's a generational thing, but I simply don't get it. Or at least I didn't get it, until I popped this FUCK SS demo in the deck. This shit? This shit is straight fire. 

26 February 2024



Excellent and weird are a good combination. One can work without the other, to be sure...but when you have both? Enter Budapest's KIÉGETT FÖLD, a project that drags early '80s angular punk into the new world and breathes life into sounds that come off like they are from another world (not just another time). Fans of ALTERNATIVE and THOUGHT CRIMINALS will perk up at cuts like "Érzelem Rendörség" and at other times (think "Élelmiszer" specifically) they're just good, raw, interesting punk that should perk up anyone reading these words. The Szégyen Kazetták label is brimming with quality, and KIÉGETT FÖLD are just another reminder to pay attention.

25 February 2024



No one does it like the West Bay Coalition, not then and certainly not now. I only saw GO LIKE THIS once - it was towards the end of their run and I had just moved back to the Bay, and it was a good reminder that it was good to be back. To watch Kindred and Frank riff off of each other was truly something special, and these songs come off like a culmination (and evolution? a progression?) of (or from?) the bands that came before them. Song construction is just way fukkn out there, and it admittedly takes a listens to really let tracks like "Dan Hogan" really sink in....but when they do? PLUTOCRACY with organs, soundtrack vibes, early aughts heavy alt and bizarro prog...fukk dude. It works, and no one does it like the West Bay Coalition...that's it. 


24 February 2024



Listen to some words that may or not be "feeling is a pain" repeated. PUBERTY WOUNDS have been here before, and their damage has manifested in other realms. But today I want you to listen to feeling. Today I want you to feel pain, because pain is the essence of feeling. Know that your puberty is never ending, know that your evolution will fail. PUBERTY WOUNDS are the sound of eternal adolescence. Eternal frustration. Eternal failure....the sound of feeling. The sound of pain. Sweet dreams, my friend.

23 February 2024


The final offering from one of the most relentless modern French DBeat machines, 2015's Chape De Plomb wrapped up a GASMASK TERRÖR's formidable discography with confidence that can only come from mastery. The influences are plain and upfront - TOTALITÅR, anthemic Japanese hardcore, modern colossal DBeat...and also TOTALITÅR - but it's what GASMASK TERRÖR do with those influences that set them apart. The riffs are straight fire, the riffs are fast as fukk, and this is a band who aren't trying to be heavier or creepier or anything more - this is a band who were simply driven, and it's refreshing. "En Opposition" is so brutally simple; two riffs and a blistering solo before the obligatory mid-tempo number that follows. You know what's coming and it still knocks your socks off, and then they sneak up on you (I'm thinking "Les Temps De Charniers" here) and knocks you the fuck out. Feels so good to listen to this shit with older ears...the tinnitus is louder than the leads this morning, so I cranked it up a bit so I could really hear the drums kick "Survivre En Temps De Paix" into gear before I walked into the other room to brush my teeth. Because I like punk. 

22 February 2024



Much like that Puddle Zines comp that was here a coupla weeks back, Time Capsule is an essential piece of East Bay (Area) early 924 Gilman-specific punk. You just need to peep the contents...ISOCRACY, GREEN DAY (covering OPERATION IVY), PENELOPE HOUSTON, JAWBREAKER, NAKED AGGRESSION (they lived here for a hot minute, remember?), BLATZ, BOMB...you get the drift. Appearances by MALIGNUS YOUTH and NOMEANSNO, plus way further under the radar acts like BLOODTEST, CRUMMY MUSICIANS and SCRUTINIZE MY BRAIN, with a few punk on the street What's The Scoop? interviews for good measure (if you remember, then you know...). Released in 1997 to celebrate the first decade of the (now) iconic spot....not gonna lie: I love this shit. 

21 February 2024



I've been doing this blog for a while now. I've had one file hosting threat/complaint (pretty sure it was BLACK FLAG related) and one person write me to ask that I take their music down (from West Virginia's 63 EYES, which seems random). I've asked a few bands and labels before posting their shit, but mostly I just go for it using the "forgiveness not permission" mantra. But after I saw IDES OF GEMINI in Los Angeles a bunch of years ago I figured I'd ask them. They said no. Not gonna say I wasn't bummed, but also who the fuck am I, right? Since then, I have listened to this band a lot and I still really fukkn dig them, so here they are. It's cool though...you should be going to bands' sites when I link them anyway. I'm just not (normally) that kind of blog. 


20 February 2024



Shit doesn't have to be fancy, and sometimes it doesn't even have to be special. Shit just has to be right, you know? And Calgary's GROWN UPS hit just fukkn right today. Infectious garage punk - the kind of shit I would have biked down Locust to see at that weird bar I can never remember the name of where I saw SOVIETTES once sometime around 2010...which means nothing at all to you, but it means something to me. 

19 February 2024



This project is going to fly under a lot of radars, and that's a fukkn shame. Imagine a bedroom DBeat / black metal project obsessed with early PENTAGRAM....image a subgenre called DoomBeat - imagine this, and know that it is real. Dust And Screams is a perfectly primitive missive - bleak and raw, oozing desperation and shrouded in actual mystery. Drop this on unsuspecting mutants and tell them it's a lost Brazilian band from Belém circa 1989. They'll believe you....and at the right volume you'll believe yourself. I haven't heard anything like this in forever - and I hope they never come out of their bedroom. 

18 February 2024



I dug this tape out of a Portland shop last spring. It was raining that day, and the bloke working in the register didn't say a word the whole time I was in the store....just flipped over a fee jazz record and kept doing something on the computer. I bought a few other things that day, but this is the one that I feel like I walked in for - you know what that's like? As if the other thing that you wanted was actually just a thing that was leading you to this. I can't describe MENTAL ANGUISH, but this dude was on (is on) and entirely different trip. Like a no budget '80s alien movie soundtrack come to life in this realm (Residue is from 1987, so in that realm as well), these are sounds of electronic isolation and theoretical escape. With over 100 releases to his name it's clear that I will never reach the bottom of this well, but I want to meet the MENTAL ANGUISH completist. Space rock for another life - I haven't even scratched the surface, and I still don't know what I walked into that record store to dig for.

17 February 2024



Absolutely fierce, piercing Italian hardcore - there are only four songs here, but SECT MARK need but a fraction of these seven minutes to wrap you up. Subtle like a serrated razor in the shadows, these are intense stomps tinged with Uchida caliber riff mania and a zero tolerance for bullshit policy. After the initial micropressing's distribution was interrupted by life, the fine folks at Iron Lung Records resuscitated this motherfucker and I couldn't be more grateful. 

16 February 2024



How the fukk you gonna tell me that you see a tape with this sticker on the spine and no j-card or painstakingly hand made insert and you don't want to listen to it? That you don't want to know what magic is trapped inside that magnetic tape just waiting to break free into your earholes? You're not going to tell me that...are you? If you are, then ask yourself: "How can I even look at myself?" Answer  in the comments...I mean, if you truly have no shame. Also, the person who anchors a tape with CAPITALIST CASUALTIES and MINISTRY? That person wins...even if the misplaced apostrophe drives me fukkn crazy. 

A lot of the second half sounds kinds muddy and shitty. 
Not my fault.
 Also probably an accurate representation of '90s hardcore. 
Also RIP Mike and Shawn...

15 February 2024



More No Fuss shit? Fukk it - when it jams, you jam it, right? CHEAP HEAT dropped this one on their own first, and the Austrians rock 'n rollers clearly knew what was up when they gave a Euro issue. Wild filthy snarling hardcore punk rock 'n roll motherfukkrs from upstate New York, shades of RKL double live (especially the vocals) and the raw unhinged recording makes them feel as ugly as they sound. Also? Riffs for days and they go fast. You want more? ECFU, NEUTRON RATS and ANAL WARHEAD dudes at work here, so protection is recommended....I'll be over here in the corner waiting for the CHEAP HEAT / HOT LOAD split, because that needs to happen.

14 February 2024



More heat from the folks at No Fuss Tapes - feel like I could have just dedicated a week to this label but I don't really do that....and also that would have required forethought which is one of the many other things I do not excel at. I make up for these deficiencies in other ways though - take my ability to blast the fuck out of cro-magnon Finnish hardcore first thing in the morning, for example. I'm really good at it, and FORCED REALITY makes me even better. Tough as nails, bloody knuckle breakdowns, the solo/s in "Ultimate Concern" will stop you dead in your tracks, and the riffs.....my people, these riffs are the embodiment of straight fire. What if ignorant NYHC were incarnated as forward thinking DIY hardcore punk....? Think about how much better off we would all be. Thinking impossible things...I'm good at that too. 


13 February 2024



SHARKPACT appeared here in the early days, a synth/drum duo who delivered a hopelessly catchy collection of tracks that was absolutely bested on this 2015 split. Impossible to really describe, but what they do will stick with you. "Fuck Ups" is untouchable, and this band should be revered. Fellow Olympians on the flip are a more traditionally punk version of the same animal. MARKED MEN with a turned up lip. I kept thinking M.O.T.O. until I heard the M.O.T.O. cover that closes their side. Just maximum energy addictive punk rock...could I ask for literally anything else this morning? I could, but why would I?

12 February 2024



A tape that sounds like a damn time machine is a tape that going to get repeated listens in and around TEHQ, and Portland's IN THE RED embody the now-dated sounds of the burgeoning millennium. Chaotic screamo-adjacent hardcore, rough, metallic and intense. Midwest basement sweat clashing with MOHINDER and '90s San Diego - I swear I hear ANIMAL FARM in some of these songs, but that reference will mean little to most readers aren't named Daniel and/or John. The replication is rough and filled with tape hiss, but I kinda feel like that's how IN THE RED are supposed to sound....especially 24 years later. 

11 February 2024



The things you miss when you look away, you know? It's happened more in the last few years unfortunately, but I suppose it's more looking at something else instead of looking away so I'm not gonna beat myself up about it. I wasn't looking away in 2015 either, but I must have blinked at exactly the wrong time because EX YOUTH were gone in a flash. Everyone perked up when the murmurs started - Tobia (LABAL, MUTILATED TONGUE),  Val (LOMA PRIETA, PUNCH) and Anthony (CEREMONY, SKIN LIKE IRON) in the same band is certainly murmur worthy - and I really paid attention when I heard this five song sonic detonation. But by the time I heard it....they were gone. Maybe you can't always pay attention to everything - you'll drive yourself bonkers trying. But don't forget to look around you, to look backwards, because even the things you missed can bring you joy. Or, in this case, rip your fucking face off. 

10 February 2024


The tape gods dropped a mighty one on me last night - I was ripping this ABEYANCE set from 1985 and I see a faint 'PERSONAL REGRETS' scrawled on the back side of the tape. I feel like I've heard a track or two when digging into '80s Las Vegas punk....but was this an entire session? Yup. And if you're looking for under the radar raw and ferocious USHC then you're going to be just as chuffed today as I was last night. Ten songs in less than twenty minutes, with a sound that lands (appropriately) somewhere in the desert just beyond the reach of LA punk. File alongside SUBTERFUGE, PLAIN WRAP, SELF ABUSE, ABEYANCE and the lot...and thank the traders who came before you.

09 February 2024



A critical piece of early '90s Bay Area punk, the Puddle Compilation Cassette captured a slivver of the scene in its infancy. LOOKOUTS, FILTH, GREEN DAY, CRINGER and BLATZ alongside lesser known hitter THE FUMES, MYSTERY MEAT, E.M.R. and NAPKINHEADS. Whether you consider this a starter kit or a refresher course, please listen to CRINGER's "Another Day" at least once today, and then lament the fact that E.M.R. appear to have left us with just this one absolute screamer. Don't need to talk about the weird ass throw away OP IVY cover, I'm sure it's bee addressed by "music journalists" a thousand times already. This music is almost 35 years old....think about that shit. Wild.

08 February 2024



Absolute next level '80s EBM worship. Drawing from the dark clubs of East Berlin, sputtering NDW and hard hitting dance floor bangers.....DIE LETZTEN ECKEN land somewhere between CABARET VOLTAIRE and NITZER EBB without aping or suffering from anything that came before them. Shit is perfect. 

07 February 2024



A few months ago my dude Spencer came back from a trip to Austria with a stack of heat from No Fuss Tapes and, in true TE better-late-than-never fashion, I've been digging through these jams hard lately. And these jams are on fire. For all of the blunt force object we heard in yesterday's GG ALIEN tape (also on No Fuss), Finland's DART are like a spear through the skull. I never knew I needed a through line to connect SPAZM 151 and ANNIHILATION TIME but I fukkn swear it arrived in Spencer's carryon luggage last fall - just an absolute no bullshit screamer from start to Finnish. See what I did there?

06 February 2024



It's really the relentless pursuit of simplicity that makes Austria's GG ALLIEN so damned interesting. Every song has essentially the same four on the floor drum beat with (very) slight alterations. Every song has sharp, barked, in your face vocals that sound like they're coming out of a human who is about to hurt you...but is scared to hurt you. The whole demo listens like a beating - no nuance, no preparation, just a slow motion assault before the assailant continues walking to work at Little Caesar's pizza pizza. He's probably the guy who cleans the grease trap.