Record of the Week: PROTESTANT In Thy Name LP


September 9th, 2014 by

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Hoooly shit! I’ve always loved me some PROTESTANT, but this new record is something else entirely, departing from their well-honed dark hardcore attack to embrace the hateful, raw filth of black metal. Cory’s unmistakable vocals (and the occasional massive breakdown) provide a link to the band’s previous discography, and the throat-ripping fury of metalpunk is definitely there, but they’ve rebuilt their sound from the ground up with some deliciously lo-fi production. The whole thing is overflowing with jaw-dropping riffs, played with the passion and precision of a band a decade into their existence. Easily one of the top black metal/crust crossovers I’ve heard—and believe me, I’ve heard far too many in the last several years. I would have to say that this is also PROTESTANT’s best, most consistent full-length to date. Trends come and go, but In Thy Name is the real deal. An instant classic.
(Halo of Flies)

—Will Blomquist



Record of the Week: TERCER MUNDO Ser Nosotros Mismos LP


September 2nd, 2014 by
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(photo courtesy of Perro Maldito)

In the years since their instantly classic and universally lauded first EP, the punks behind TERCER MUNDO have relocated from Monterrey (epicenter of the Mexican drug wars) to Mexico City (a place with plenty of its own problems—and also the subject of this month’s scene report). Their 12″ isn’t quite as in-your-face as that record (which famously featured a photo of a naked, legless female corpse, shot in the chest and captioned with the phrase “Mexico 2012—60,000 human beings dead. Now go party and score some cocaine.”) but it doesn’t have to be. They got your attention. This is more subtle, but no less incendiary. I can’t help but think of Presionados, the 1989 LP by XENOFOBIA, who also hailed from Mexico City. The cover of that record featured los cerdos facing an angry mob, fists in the air; the back of this one has a lone man pelting a rock at a wall of faceless cops. In 30 years, how little has changed—in fact, it seems like things have only gotten worse. “Espero llegar al día / Que acabe esta pesadilla.” TERCER MUNDO take elements of classic Mexican hardcore and make them their own—they pick up the pace, put blistering guitar leads and solos on top. Bile drips off the vocals, provided by Dave Rata (of RATAS DEL VATICANO), who seems to be the primary songwriter here, also playing bass and guitar on these recordings. A contender for record of the year, it comes in a hand-screened sleeve, with a risograph printed insert with lyrics in both Spanish and English. Pick this one up while you can. (Cintas Pepe)



Record of the Week: QLOAQA LETAL Nunca, Siempre LP


August 26th, 2014 by

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Recorded in 1983 in Valladolid, Spain, mastered 30 years later right here in California, and released shortly after by the Mallorca-based Metadona Records, this legendary punk tape has finally been properly dignified in the vinyl format. Like their contemporaries in Spain, you can tell their sound resulted from simultaneously digesting both first wave punk and proto-hardcore, recalling a bit of CICATRIZ and KANGRENA, but also the gloomy side of PARALISIS PERMANENTE. However, while exuding darkness, QLOAQA LETAL is not campy, just genuinely creepy and candidly cynical abouttheir social reality: “Life spits on me, luck deceives me, glory avoids me, death grabs me.” While becoming a classic of the Punk Ibérico repository, they definitely developed their own sound here and it’s amazing! The bass pulsing percussively over a crudely fuzzy guitar tone, Rouky’s warm and gritty vocals, as well as the intriguing electronic sound of the manual drum kit are all elements that make this stand out in their time period. Furthermore, they often infused their live shows with elements of theatrical plays. The package includes an insert with lyrics and photo clippings from the period showing their wonderful freak aesthetic, and prompting me to shudderthinking about what it must have been like walking around conservative Valladolid in the early ’80s looking like that. Possibly attributable to LA BANDA TRAPERA DEL RIO, the word cloaca (sewer) and its associated imagery became a Spanish punk signifier, which one could interpret as a message reminding the new pseudo-democratic regime obsessed with cleaning its own image that the shit still has to go somewhere. Awesome record and a cool artifact. (Metadona Records)

—Lena Tahmassian

MRR is putting together an especial Punk Ibérico issue to come out in January 2015. If you have anything to contribute, please send it to mrr {at} maximumrocknroll(.)com. Thanx, punx!



Record of the Week: CONTORTURE/AHNA split EP


August 19th, 2014 by

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Handle with care, this is fuggin’ deadly. Göteborg’s CONTORTURE goes straight for the jugular with their raging feminist käng, expertly toeing the raw/melodic line that has come to define Swedish crust in the last decade. Lyrics revisit familiar themes of autonomy, rape culture, and watching those around you age out of punk, but with a personalistic approach, and the lead vocals remind me of Kate from SCHIFOSI in all the best ways. On the flip, leading Canadian powerviolence freex AHNA lays out two more doses of their noisey blackened filth, sounding yet again like they’ve managed to record in one of the lesser pits of hell. This is actually a lot less blast-centric than their older material, with crusty rhythms offsetting the murky metalloid gloom, and the opening sludge of “Living in Fear” channels the headbanging glory of BOLT THROWER to perfection. Already a serious contender for my favorite split of 2014, this is nothing short of mandatory for all you metalpunx.
(Active Rebellion / Into the Abyss / Neanderthal Stench / What Is Making Us Sick)

—Will Blomquist



Record of the Week: S.H.I.T. Generation Shit EP


August 12th, 2014 by

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Originally intended to be together on a LP, this is the second of two EPs S.H.I.T. has released in 2014, and boy, is it a scorcher. Furiously driven as much as it is restrained, this manic hardcore outfit sucks you into their realm of downstrums, metronomic drums and shrill squeals as they spew their branded way of making punk in your face. Two guitars with the fastest picking imaginable, making sure you hear the full extent of each riff, filling out the sound perfectly. The drums pierce through the high frequencies of the guitars and vocals, keeping hard time better than you ever thought possible. As with the first EP, the sleeve is a full-size poster with artwork by the very underrated Jaybo. Get this, own this. (Lengua Armada)

— Kat Smith