Friday, December 20, 2013

Assuck - "Misery Index" + Test Press

Sometime's I just feel like using this blog to it's real "show-off" potential and make posts like this. I've seen quite a few smash-my-face-into-the-wall-with envy test pressing posts on some of my fellow vinyl blogs, so I thought I'd throw my own addition into the fray.This right here is a test press for the grindcore magnum-opus album, "Misery Index" by Assück. Next to my regular pressing of the record.

Believe it or not, I actually got this gem on Discogs. Ken from Hellnation and Sound Pollution Records head hancho, apparently set up an account and put up test presses for almost the entire Sound Pollution catalog. And everything for incredibly low prices. Honestly, the price kept me away from buying some stuff right away, it seemed too good to be true. Eventualy I broke and figured it was worth a shot, and actually bought an addition test press (that I'll probably show soon), and upon confirmation of it's authenticity, immediately bought the "Misery Index" test press. This baby is limited to 5 copies. 

 Don't think I need to go into great detail explaining why this album is so good, Anyone into grindcore should be familiar with at least some of this band's catalog. Deadly serious and ferocious deathy-grind, some of the most technically sharp and inventive stuff to come out of the east coast in the 90's, and angry as all hell. This album still kicks ass, even by todays standards, and Rob Proctors blasting puts most of todays players to shame with his crippling intensity. Question for anyone who also has this record; did your copy come with a lyric sheet? Mine didn't.


~VII

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Perennial Loser

Can't stop the mince, don't want it to stop!! "Canadian Horse" is an album that I bought when my interest in Archagathus, and mince in general, was still in an infant stage. I bought it when it came out from TLAL, almost 3 years ago (that's really hard to believe, wow), and within the last couple months it's actually started to become one of my favorite albums. I'm very happy to own the rarest variant of this record. Lavender vinyl, limited to 100, 45 RPM.

Can't go on without mentioning the epicness of this album cover. It's just so...well look at it! I don't even think I should have to explain what's going on here, you're most likely already making your own judgements on it as we speak. Really, it's a love it or hate it cover, and I'm on the side of the former. It's just so cheeky (no pun intended) that I really can't see how anyone can't love it even a little bit. A fun cover for a fun band, let's but it that way. Listening to this album makes me want to see them play in someones basement, with drinks flying everywhere and endless sweaty party-moshing. 

Nothing short of a mince masterpiece. This album has The Prince of Mince displaying the best recording he/they've ever had, and their strongest songs to date. Every song on here is an upbeat, charging, mish-mash of classic Agathocles mince, crusty hardcore, old-school grindcore, some Euro-style riffs here and there, and an endless amount of vocal styles. You got low growls, SUPER low growls, piggy squeals, crusty barks, and some of the most throat-wrenching high screams I've ever heard. Honestly, the vocals are one of my favorite parts of this record, they give every song tons of variety and keep them interesting. And dammit, they're just so catchy! I get the riff to "Mincecore Fabio" (previously called "Hairdresser" before it was reworked for this record), stuck in my head at least once a day. "Perennial Loser" has one of my favorite riffs on the whole record, and the last two songs throw in some very nice slow, sludgy riffs. The only time they appear on the whole record. 

Comes with a nice big poster and a double-sided lyrics sheet, which I would have pictures of but my camera seems to have derped while I was taking them. 


The larger variants of this record are still pretty easy record to find, and TLAL recently did a nice looking split-color vinyl repress of it. Treat yourself.


~VII


Sunday, December 15, 2013

Cold Sweat

RIP powerviolence in 2013, you had a good run, you had some good records, but Abuse. straight up murdered everyone. Folks, I have no idea if this band is even comprised of actual mortal human beings. I think that this band was the result of some crazy lab experiment to create the perfect powerviolence band that went wonderfully, fantastically well. Not only did they release one of the best 7"s earlier this year on Hygiene Records, now they come at us again with a contender for album of the year, from To Live A Lie Records. And I'm just barely getting over the rush of the first EP! Again, perfect band. TLAL did 2 variants of this record, and since I'm a raging fanboy right now, I had to break my rule and get both variants. 100 are on transparent green vinyl, and 400 are black/brown split.

I honestly have a hard time putting how good this record is into words. It's really something that I beg and plead you to listen to on your own to get the full impact, but I'll take a shot at it. This record really is powerviolence 101. There are no faults, or flaws with anything recorded here. The band sounds intense, rabid, like if they have to play as hard as they can or else they'll collapse and die. The drums are cripplingly heavy, and man, this vocalist gives one of my favorite performances of the year. Passionate. frothing, angry-bulldog barks that really don't sound like many other vocalists. I truly do recommend this record to anybody into powerviolence, hardcore, fastcore, grind, etc. If you can't get into it, I just feel sorry for you.

I do believe every Abuse. record has an image of a man in the fetal position. Consistency points?

Double-sided lyric sheet.

Buy this right now from To Live A Lie.


~VII

The Night Wolf

One of the bands that I've been semi-sorta-obsessing over the past couple months is the mighty Prince of Mince, Archagathus, from Canada. I've always had an interest in them, as evident by past posts on this blog. But only recently did the switch really click, and now I can't get enough. Keeping up with the band has proven to me quite difficult at times, and a lot of their records get released overseas. Fortunately a few choice distro's keep me pretty well stoked. Here's on of their most recent, and definitely prettiest split 7" with No Thought, 33 RPM, white w/ black splatter vinyl.

I was hounding after this one in particular for a few reasons; one, 2 brand new Arch tracks (as the label advertised that is..), and longer tracks too, which got me curious about some possible experimentation. Finally, lookit that gosh darn vinyl! I'm a sucker for splatter, what can I say.

Now even though it was advertised that these were "new and unreleased tracks", as a pal of mine pointed out, both of them are from other releases. Soooo, what's that about? Regardless, Archagathus's tracks are great, no surprise. The songs are a bit longer (hence there only being two of them), and have a bit more of a metal sound mixed pure mince. Just think of death metal era Agathocles, you get the idea. Supremely raw and almost too much fun, that's Archagathus for you. I do believe that Arch are kind of inbred with Violent George now, which could explain the way both bands are sounding right now. The Archagathus/Nak'ay split has a more metallic sound too. No complaints though! I'm always down to see a band as prolific as this mix up the formula a bit.

Archagathus usually have a tendency to split with bands that are worth the extra side of wax, and No Thought are no exception! Brutal as fuck, deathy grindcore from Denver, CO. This band reeks like a rotten basement, ugly, raw recordings, spine snapping blast beats and commanding intensity. Loved every track on their side. Funny story actually, the first time I heard this was at work, and I thought the No Thought side was actually the Arch side, and was really shocked at how much they had "changed", or so it appeared. Lesson of the story; your co-worker most likely won't be able to tell you what side you're listening too because he can't read the band logo's correctly.

Nice looking package from Uranium Overdose Records. Never got the deal with the mini-3rd panel sleeve, but it is what it is. All copies are hand-numbered too, out of 525, and all come on the splatter vinyl. No variants here, nice touch. 



~VII

Thursday, December 12, 2013

Deluded

Bit of a black sheep in my record collection. Outside of Cult Ritual and the band in this post, this kind of rehashed, old-school raw hardcore style isn't one that I got into that hard. Bands like Creem, Cülo, Gas Rag, Lotus Fucker, etc. It's all just a little too rudimentary for me at this point, and the amount of hype that follows many of these acts astounds me. It's like the "learn three chords and start a band" saying from the old days has been taken to heart again, and I guess people can't get enough of it. But I digress, with all that being said, Vile Gash is a band I've liked listening too for a while. I picked this up earlier in the year in Rochester. The "Deluded" EP, red vinyl, 45 RPM.

Brought to us by the kings of coolboy hardcore, Youth Attack, This record is a gorgeous package. Thick, sturdy, fully printed glued sleeve, super grim artwork, and beautiful red vinyl. It's undeniably impressive stuff, especially for a record that barely goes past three minutes over each side. The brevity isn't really a big deal for me, but I do wish it was at least single-sided. The tracks are good, for this kind of hardcore anyway. Nice and angry, with a solid vocalist and Japanese hardcore injected jams.



Punks is aesthetics.

~VII

Mankind

Quick post about a classic record. Infest, a band that needs no introduction, and I'm sure we all know about their crucial part of hardcore's progression. Pretty much ground-zero for American powerviolence. This is their 2nd self-titled 7", a reissue by Deep Six and Draw Blank records, grey vinyl, 45 RPM.

I found this copy for an insanely good price on discogs, so low that I thought it was a bootleg copy. But nope, legit reissue. It's sometimes referred to as the "Mankind EP", due to the 10" repress which took on that name. Classic in every sense of the word. It's crazy how many bands are still replicating this bands sound today, it's just timeless! We've all been guilty of stealing an Infest riff, whether we realize it at the time or not. This copy is a little strange. There are many variants of this record floating around, mostly with different colored covers. The tan ones for some reason come with an over-sized sleeve. Not sure why this is, but it was a bit annoying to make a custom plastic sleeve for it. Collector problems.

Looks like screen printed covers. Comes with a lyric sheet too.


~VII

Saturday, November 23, 2013

Tighten Your Belts

Lycanthrophy is probably a name you've seen pop up a lot in many grindcore circles and distro's, and hopefully, you haven't passed them by, because this band truly is awesome. They've been around for many years, and I do think they are one of the best grind bands to come out of the Czech Republic. Right up their with Needful Thing and Gride for me. The best stuff I've heard from them by far is their sole full length, "Lycanthrophy", black vinyl, 45 RPM.

A brilliant record, very overlooked. This 20 song record is a beautiful 15 minute blaster of non-stop rip-dick fastcore. Fastcore with huge grindcore influence, mind you. The band really has a modern sound on here, pristine and heavy recording, cleaned up very well. More Rotten Sound then Hellnation. It's some intense stuff, but still has some catchy ass riffs, and I'm sure most will have a lot of fun listening to this. People who can get down with bands like Six Brew Bantha and Idiots Parade should be heading to these guys next. 

The cover art was definitely a grower for me. It's still cheesy and crude looking, but it has charm. I dig it.

I do believe this is getting a US reissue from Give Praise Records. The LP has only been issued in Europe so far, so getting something out their more domestically would be nice.

~VII

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Dropdead Split Test Presses

About a month or two ago, Dropdead had some leftover test presses of their two new upcoming split 7"s for sale on the Armageddon Records store site. Any chance to pick up some Dropdead tests should be instantly acted upon so I snatched them both up for a cool 6 bucks each. Plus, new fucking Dropdead jams, so naturally yes. While I am happy to own these, I got to be honest I don't particularly care for either one. I've made it clear that I'm not a crust guy, really at all, and these new Dropdead songs are just too...crusty. And I know! D'oy, Dropdead have always been a crusty band, don't even start with that. But they always held my attention because they were fast and aggressive as fucking hell, and I love them for it! They sounded like a crust punk band, but they all loved powerviolence just a little more. These new songs just make the band sound tired, and worn out. Playing half speed crust tunes that I could hear from anywhere. The vocals don't even have the same grit as they used to, or screamed delivery. Crust is crust, oh well. Here's their split with Ruidisa Inmundicia. Both tests are on black vinyl, 45 RPM.

And here's the test for their split with Systematic Death. I think both of these records are either close to, or just released. 





~VII