Wednesday, June 29, 2011

War! Grind! Hell!

   I finally got this cassette in the mail yesterday, "War Grind Hell"; the latest EP from New Jersey raw-dogs Dethroned Emperor. I reviewed this beast several months ago on my youtube channel, and I gave it high praise. It would have been one of my favorites of last year if it had actually been officially released. Production problems aside now, the physical cassette is finally out for all to enjoy!

   Dethroned Emperor play a very old-school style of grindcore, with a lot of influence from bestial death metal bands. Very rough, yet clear recordings, growled vocals drenched in reverb, a thick guitar tone, bassy drums. It's an awesome production job. And there's a Terrorizer cover to boot!

   The packaging is really nothing special. One sided cover, one sided insert with a plain white cassette with sharpie writing. Pretty basic. It doesn't even have a spine label, which is weird. As far as I know there may be 100 or 150 of these bad boys released. You can get in contact with the band here. They have quite a few releases planned, so keep an eye out. Approved!

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

5 Underrated Grind Bands

   5. Parlamentarisk Sodomi: Not so much a band, seeing as it's only one person, but it's still some of the best crust-inspired-grindcore you'll ever hear. In my opinion, all one-man-grindcore-projects should be compared to PxSx, and 99.8% of the time, they will crash and burn in comparison. It's very apparent that a lot time, energy, and a keen concentration on production was involved in creating these songs. The drums programming rivals that of newer Agoraphobic Nosebleed, the vocals harken back to crust gods Extreme Noise Terror, and the riffs are unbelievable. Get wise to this project right the fuck now!

4. Maruta: I can definitely see these guys become heavy hitters in the modern grind scene very soon, but for now they seem more like cult band than anything else. While getting rave reviews in magazines like Decibel, Maruta still doesn't seem to be a very talked about band. Which is a shame since their technical, Discordance Axis-inspired grind is definitely something to pay attention too. While they like to branch out stylistically, their music is firmly rooted in grindcore. Blazingly fast, very technical, beefy, heavy grindcore. Learn up!

3. Total Fucking Destruction: Another cult grind band, even with Rich Hoak manning the drums. Formed after the demise of Brutal Truth, TFD is a grind band that sound like no other grind band, which is something that demands some credit. Bat-shit-insane, rock'n'roll, party grind. Tongue-in-cheek, yet deadly serious. Grind this shit!

2. Fuck the Facts: This band is so fucking good, it's almost frustrating. Another band that really doesn't stick to one genre, or sub-genre, but is still definitely rooted in grindcore. Unafraid to venture into territories that many grind bands are to afraid to go; such as melody and epic song lengths. You could be listening to a minute and a half blast of pure grind for one song, then a 9 minute epic of melodic, sludgy, gothenburg inspired metal. Incredible band. Listen up and play it loud!

1. Shitstorm: This band is so overlooked that it's criminal. Definitely one of my current favorites, Shitstorm play direct, to the point, no holds bars grindcore. Short songs, fast drumming, hardcore inspired, powerviolence-influenced, gruff vocals, killer riffs, unbelieveably catchy songs, and they share members with the mighty Torche! One of the best going right now. Their side of the Magrudergrind split is some of the best 9 minutes of grind I've ever heard. Play it loud!

Sunday, June 19, 2011

An Interview with Hummingbird of Death

   Here's a recent interview I did over email with Mike, the drummer from the fantastic Boise fastcore band Hummingbird of Death. This interview was done over email. Full support!

Built to Blast: For those who don't know, tell us how Hummingbird of Death formed. 

Mike: Justin (guitar) and myself (drums) were in other bands together around 2004-05. By the summer of 2005, though, I grew really anxious to do a fastcore side project. Justin was the only guy I knew who could handle the guitar duties, so I asked him and he accepted. The two of us made a demo tape and it got such a good response that we decided to get a bass player and become a real band. We've been rollin' non-stop ever since.

BTB: How'd you come up with the name Hummingbird of Death?

Mike: It really just popped into my head one day and I thought it would make a cool name. There's no story behind it.

BTB: You guys describe your band as fastcore, care to explain to people exactly what fastcore is?

Mike: It's ultra-fast hardcore punk. The tempos, song structure, song lengths, etc. are all taken to as high a degree as possible. We've been trying to really stretch the boundaries of what the term 'fastcore' encapsulates. The most important thing is that it's rock 'n' roll.

BTB: What's the scene like in Boise? Is there a good amount of grind/fastcore supporters?

Mike: The scene is very small, yet it's big enough to fragment into a number of social cliques that don't like to intermingle. A basement full of people can be counted on to roll out to a grind show in Boise.

BTB: One of the things that I like about you guys is that it seems like you concentrate on songwriting. Like on the Goatmeal 5", each song is distinguishable from the others. Which is incredible.

Mike: Well, thanks very much! We tried really hard to write good songs that sounded as fully realized as possible with a 4-8 second time frame.

BTB: What can you tell us about the upcoming Hummingbird releases?

Mike: Well, we have a split 12" with the late, great Titanarum up next. That was recorded last summer, and I literally just approved the test press yesterday, so we'll be seeing that one released in the next few weeks hopefully. We just recorded two more releases, a full-length LP and a split 12" with Downsided. Hopefully those can be released this year. All three of these releases involve a lot of experimentation, hopefully people will be able to hang with them!
     Also coming out in July is a very special limited single entitled "Archaic Technologies 2." I don't want to say much about it now, but there is a connection between the format and the title.
Finally, we are learning songs for a split 12" with the mighty Cold World from Austria.

BTB: Your upcoming split 4" with xBrainiax seems so insane. Knowing you guys, I assume there will be about 35 tracks per side. 

Mike: I don't know if we can get that many songs on there! But I think we will take an approach similar to Goatmeal. We haven't actually written any songs for it yet, but I know that xBrainiax has written some.

BTB: Will it be the first 4" record ever made? Are you going to have to make some super special order to have it pressed? 

Mike: I can't name any 4" releases off the top of my head, but I know they've been done. Vinyl pressing technology has come a long way recently.

BTB: What's your song writing process like?

Mike: 98% of the songs pop into my head more or less spontaneously. Then I bring them to practice and we flesh them out from there. Some songs take longer than others.

BTB: What music have you been blasting lately?

Mike: A lot of melodic punk lately. Cigar, Satanic Surfers, Quadiliacha. Not On Tour is a recent discovery, they are incredible. Also, Weekend Nachos, Lack Of Interest, Sidetracked, and so on.

BTB: Any final words?

Mike: Thanks for the interview man! Anyone in the northwest US, come check us out at New Direction Fest in Olympia, Washington, August 19-20. Visit to keep up to date with us.

-VII Caso-

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Operation Grindcore Vol. 1

I suggest everyone stop what they're are doing right the fuck now and download this beast of a compilation that my buddy Andrew of Operation Grindcore put out just minutes ago. Almost every band on here is a winner, and guess band Hiroshima Vacation is on it! We're just a small, small part of what makes this comp. so awesome. It's pay what you want, so go for it! And support Operation Grindcore all you can! Hails! Download the comp from the bandcamp here!

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Seth Putnam is Fucking Dead

   So it finally happened. On June 11th 2011 Seth Putnam, the vocalist and founder of the infamous, if not the most infamous grind band ever, Anal Cunt, has passed away at the age of 43 of apparent heart failure.  I won't go into personal opinions on the man or his music, but this will undoubtably be sad news to a lot of people. I'm not sad, I'm not that happy, but I'll just end by saying that he left his mark, and without him grind probably wouldn't be the same. For better or worse.