So… here I sit, having spent the summer driving around the country trying to find the hardcore and figure out just what the hell it really is.
After much searching for the source all I can say is that the scene is struggling. We’re falling apart at the seams and I often wonder whether there’s anything that can be done about it. It seems to me that the problem is that the core is wasting away. People are getting tired or jaded or whatever and just dropping out. Maybe it’s just the natural evolution: change through rebirth, a cutting of the ranks, a tilling of the soil. Maybe, but I don’t think so. It feels different this time.
I picture the scene like an apple. The core binds things together and the fruit of their labour surrounds it. It seems that nowadays a lot of promoters have forsaken the core. They realize that there are bigger numbers in appealing to the masses, in watering things down to appeal to increasingly lower common denominators, and while this does bring in a larger crowd it alienates the people who have been supporting the scene for years.
I’m not just talking about gabber or whatever the hell you want to call it. I’m talking about everything… piss poor rehashings of successful producers are showing up in all forms of music. People ripping off Aphrodite are doing the same thing to drum and bass as hordes of Paul Elstak clones did to gabber, and mainstream media isn’t helping. Kids are being fed information by people who have no clue and it’s sickening to think that kids out there recognize the names of fly by night faces ahead of people like Mike Banks, Lenny Dee and Marc Acardipane. It’s time to address the simple fact that enough time has passed that there’s a generation gap in the rave scene.
It used to be that I would walk into a rave and feel like I’d been transported to an alien environment full of sounds I had never heard, sights I had never seen. Now, more often that not, I feel like I’ve walked into a club… which is precisely the sort of environment that this scene was supposed to provide sanctuary from. Too many people are spending too much time wondering what they mean to the scene and forgetting that the more pressing question is “What does the scene mean to me?”
The bottom line is that pretty much everybody needs to take some time to put things in perspective. Pull back, check the contacts and reconnect. Re-evaluate your motives and goals and think about what it means to be a part of all this.
After Even Furthur I found myself thinking about a lot things. An experience that intense tends to muddy a lot waters. Which brings me to the second part of my quest. Figuring out just what hardcore is.
Is it hardcore to be yourself, no matter what the consequences? Is it hardcore to try and push yourself further and further?
The conclusion I came to is that maybe it’s a little bit of both. Maybe the best description is to say that it’s about losing restraints, but not losing control. They’re not the same and shouldn’t be confused.
Restraints are the limits that are imposed on you by the world, by the people around you and by yourself. Lose them. They are the chains that drag you down and stop you from being free.
Control, is another thing entirely. By freeing yourself from restraints you should be gaining control. The less restriction you have, the more mobile you are. It makes sense. It’s personal freedom in a nutshell. The control mechanisms should remain intact, though.
Lately the hardcore list on the ‘net seems to revolve more and more around derogatory discussions of who is the hardest, when the more pressing question (for me, anyway) is “what the hell is this whole thing all about?”
Hardcore isn’t about who is the fastest or loudest or noisiest. It might be about who is the most original or creative… but even that’s a little off.
Hardcore is about finding your own voice and using it. Whether you’re shouting from the rooftops or whispering in your basement is irrelevant. Be yourself. Be hard. Be free… but always remember to show respect.
Speaking of which. Shouts out to: RoG (Wrong Island), D.Prg (Edmonton), x0x (Detroit), Eric & Steve (Chicago), Rural Amerika (Urbana), PBS (Pittsburgh), Jon (Industrial Strength), Dan & Kevin (Distort), Kurt (Drop Bass), Joel (Deadly Systems), Seedy & Clone (Van), 9 Volt (Brooklyn), Urban Guerilla (Mpls), Far Out (Mankato), Bdisco & Fracture (Toronto), Yves & Daria (Montreal).
Toys 'R' Us
El Turco Loco 03, USA
What the fuck? I wander into this record shop in Fargo, ND and stumble across this slab of weirdness… and it is genuinely weird. There looks to be 3 long-ish tracks on the a-side and a selection of shorter ones on the flip. Second side suits my purposes more, but your mileage may vary. I honestly don’t know what to say about this beast. It’s all over the place in terms of tempos and the only thing that remains constant is the distortion and general grittiness of the recording. The upside to all this is that there’s probably something on here that can get you out of any particular track you happen to be playing. This record can’t be pigeonholed as being any one style, and the title seems to indicate that it’s a sampler of several different artists. There’s no tracklisting to be found and it’s a white label, so figure it out for yourself. 453/666 <fishead>
Riot In Milwaukee 1980
El Turco Loco 004, USA
Yet another strange slab from the El Turco Loco camp. I’m told this is Khan who used to work with Walker and that whole crew of crazy Germans. It’s all becoming clear. Worthy of mention simply for having Beer City in the title, this odd record is pretty much what it says it is: a recording of a riot at a Black Sabbath concert in 1980… at least, part of it is. The bulk of it is actually weird, slowish breakbeat tracks that use samples of crowd noise. Kids yelling “fuck you” and tour managers proclaiming that “Black Sabbath do not appreciate being pelted with flying objects” etc. More of a curiosity / intro piece than something that will actually worm its way into the fat of a set. 100/666 <fishead>
Surgeon 16-04, UK
UK Skullfuck opens things up with something fast… and the tempo stays there. 270bpm+ guitarcore for the valium challenged. La Haine features samples of some folk singer pickin’ his strings and leading people in a chorus of “we don’t smoke marijuana.” Later it breaks down into ragga samples, hard breaks guitars and noise. Next track recalls the second side of the Berzerker record on Bastard Loud, only the guy yelling sounds like he’s angrier and taller.
The prolific Noizecreator does the flip… populated with more speed and a nice raping of Alles Naar De Klote called Manipulated Dutchman…Your friends will probably hate it, so buy it now ’cause you’ll probably never hear it otherwise. Would get a higher mark, but I’m starting to get tired of guitars. 516/666 <fishead>
Kingz Of Noize
If Jesus Was The Devil
SixSixtySix 009, USA
Basically if you don’t buy the Six-Sixty-Six stuff on sight then I think you’re a moron. This one is my favourite since the Ingler release (SSS005), although it’s in a completely different style. The first side starts out with some down’n’dirty, noise laden breaks that are well constructed and surprisingly mixable. As an added bonus there’s a choice noise track littered with samples of some evangelist yelling from a top his high horse, nice place to start a set from… or visit when you want to give people a bit of a break. Second side is where you really feel the pitchfork. Two tracks with mad effects… kick drums mutate into tones and then the static breaks up and turns into a beat again. Fucking brilliant… you should own this already. 616/666 <fishead>
Radium / MNO
Slaves Of Devil Our Master 04
A couple of my favourite producers go toe to toe on a split 12″. Radium (from Micropoint) contributes two tracks of solid sounding hardcore from the country that’s been topping my list of places to listen to for the last year: France. Delicious. Naoto Suzuki is the culprit on the other side, and the first track (Silent Maternity) is one of the best tracks I’ve heard from him thus far. Not nearly as fast as the Deadly Drive and Smily Slayers tracks, and not as abusive as his DDT work. The two tracks on the Japanese side of the record show a side of him I’d like to see more of. 576/666 <fishead>
Epiteth 011, France
Damn it… What is with this country. Another extremely solid release for fans of throbbing noise in the 200-215bpm range. I can’t even find the words to express how good this record is. Four tracks and the only one that doesn’t get full marks is Analog Alien ’cause it bites my ass the wrong way. The rest of the record manages the difficult task of being hard and smooth at the same time. The programming is impeccable… if you don’t believe me have a listen to the last third of FMM: from 4/4 kicks to rolling beats to bursts of noise and back again… just make sure you give yourself room to get out of the track ’cause the end is just about guaranteed to fuck up a mix. I wonder if they’d let me migrate to Paris. Henry Miller sure had a good time there. 664/666 <fishead>
Three Bad Brothers
Industrial Strength 048, USA
Well-produced hardcore in the 230bpm range. Surprising ’cause most of the Torgull and Manu Le Malin I’ve heard has been a lot slower… But please, don’t think that’s a complaint… I love this record. I wasn’t sure what to make of the lack of distortion on the kick drum, but the more I listen the more I like. It’s kinda like arguing about what’s better for beheading your victims, an axe or the guillotine. They both do the job, and they both inspire fear… but let’s face it- The guillotine probably brought more people to the brink of pants crapping terror than a rusty axe ever did. Watch out for the hip-hop breakdown in Suckers, have fun and remember to keep your head and arms inside the Mixer at all times. ‘Cause regardless of how enjoyable it is to talk about decapitation Bill will tell you it’s no fun finding yer kid’s head over by the SnoCone concession… “Stuart, do you know that this record gets… 583/666?” <fishead>
Static Tremor/ Destroyer/ Ingler/ Headfuck DJ Team
Headfuck – 002, Italy
I’m still playing Crusher’s Kickdrum from the first Headfuck release and here comes #2. I hear they’re all the way up to #4 now, but nobody sends me promos (hint, hint) so how would I know. The side with the picture is the a-side. Static Tremor starts it off with a tune that breaks down into an eerie Twilight Zone-esque that should be positively piercing on a large system… This is followed by The Destroyer’s track which is nice and playable, but suffers greatly from a bouncy melody that runs all the way through it. Arxfile by Ingler is enough to nearly obliterate memory of that track and surprised the hell out of me by including a vocal sample. Unfortunately, things end on a low note with the Headfuck DJ Team’s track… it’s not bad, but it doesn’t really go anywhere… just sort of pounds away in a bassy way for a few minutes and then goes home. Two tracks worth playing out and another two that barely make the grade mean this one only scores 423/666. <fishead>
Ministry Of Mass Domination
Psychotik Genocide 001, France
First side of this seems like pretty standard fare, if you ignore the seemingly random downward shifts in tempo that occur a couple of times in Nootropyl Addiction (which is the first time I can recall picking a Kraftwerk sample out of a hardcore track).
Second side, however, is another story completely. Harder and faster, louder and faster. Tracks that speed up instead of slowing down… cranking their way to new heights like a car revving it’s engine. Not a guitar in sight and Mode Hardcore takes Master And Servant by synth-pop toy-boys Depeche Mode and does a very nice job of mangling it in new and innovative ways. Try that with your old feather duster! 600/666 <fishead>
Flip Burgers Or Die
Digital Hardcore, Germany
Probably my favourite breakcore producer (aside from Stunt Rock). I often feel that breakcore is just jungle with bad production values, but Bomb 20 did a nice job of their first DHR release, and these 5 tracks hit in a similar spot. Sounds are clean when they need to be and gritty when they want to be. Scratch-like noises littered all through both sides of the record and some impressive sample work show that this crew aren’t afraid to display their hip-hop roots.For fellow conspiracy theorists out there DHR posse provide more evidence that they’re listening to a lot of Nasenbluten. Over The Top on side 2 samples the same WuTang passage that Australia’s own shred on their “Really Nasty…” EP for Storm.The aforementioned Over The Top is the only track on the second side that grabbed me, but side one kicks some ass. After a lot of thought I’d have to say that the opening track Made Of Shit is the track to rip speakers up with… Dark bassline and the loudest drums on the record spell things out nice’n’clear. 545/666 <fishead>
Opaque/Dr. Butcher MD
Dark EP (v1.1)
Freakshow 01, USA
Wahn Taho by Opaque occupies the first side of the record… The track starts with what sounds like it could be someone playing a guitar with a bow, regardless of what it sounds like it IS fuckin’ dark, evil shit. Distorted, speedcore from Indiana… Yeah, you heard me, the Hoosiers are gonna kill us all. I swear. The virus has infected the heartland, we’re all doomed. Now, don’t flip the record just yet… Go down to the video store and grab a mixed bag of Italian gore flicks in preparation for Dr. Butcher MD. Anything by Bava or Fulci should suit your purposes… although I’ve got a soft spot for Argento’s Profondo Rosso. Mind Silence is THE shit. The discordant intro sounds the alarm for what is coming. John Wayne’s vocal chords are hurled at you and then beaten into a pulp and the beat keeps storming around the room, chasing you from hiding spot to hiding spot and then it ends. You feel safe for a second or two… and then you remember there’s still one more track. You leap from behind the couch, running for your life, hoping to get to the turntable before it starts up… but you’re too late. “We’re Going To Get You” and they do. The virus spreads. 666/666 <fishead>
Straight out of Bloomington, Indiana comes a big surprise to these ears. Hard fuckin’ Core from the middle of nowhere. The A side opens with the gutteral speedcore rantings of Wahn Taho. This stuff is mean and nasty. The flip drops “Mind Silence” with its mechanical percussion gritty spooky synths and a sample that sounds like John Wayne or some other Western gun totin’ freak spouting off. Effects get layed on and John Boy’s voice box gets a napalm treatment and noises things up a bit. The last track here is the one that grabs me. “We’re Going To Get You” wails on your cheap ass at about 160 bpm with a broken beat intro and this creepy ass sample of little girls saying the title. The kick that drops after the break puts holes in cement floors. Nice tone lock groove at the end of this one. Mark this one on my top 10. <dan>
Christ Of Noise
Amiga Tools Industry v1 & v2
Provision 002 & 003, France
Buy or die. It’s that simple. Ultra distorted, weird and fast. Fucked up gibberish shouting. Torturous frequencies. Insane at 33rpm, caves your skull in at 45. The bottom line is this: the French are making Amigacore. There will be no Waterloo this time around. Learn “Le Marseillais'” grow a thin mustache, buy a beret and start drinking café au lait. The end is nigh. Les Francais font l’Amigacore! Vive la France! Achetez ces disques… MAINTENANT. You can have these records when you pry them from my cold, dead fingers. Six Cent Soixante et Six sur Six Cent Soixante et Six. <tete-de-poisson>
Being a Canadian who hates pop music is getting to be a lot more fun now that Nasenbluten have acknowledged how much Canadian pop music sucks… and I’ve always wondered about the Bryan Adams connection, ’cause I think they sampled a guitar lick from one of his overplayed 80s hits on the BrickShitHouse EP… but I’ll shut up now, ’cause that’s not this record. This record has Underground Church on it. Underground Church is good stompin’ fun. No Brian Adams samples (that I could hear), but then… maybe that’s why his name is crossed off in the credits. Not sure about Farts… the premise is interesting, but I think they should eat more beans before recording their flatulence. In general, it’s another dose of worm burping fun from everyone’s favourite Australians. Oh wait… there’s probably some stupid people who like that guy with the accent on Baywatch even if he does play a rapist in Nowhere (btw: see that movie now… no Nasenbluten on the soundtrack, but no Bryan Adams either), so maybe that last bit is misleading). I give it all five points on the pentagram, but only 631/666. <fishead>
There’s these crazy guys up here that do weird experimental noise, run film loops at parties and generally seem to get off on really abstract shit. One night one of them comes up to me and hands me this record. He says this friend of his made it. I’m thinking “oh great… a friend of yours made it,” but y’know… they’re into really abstract shit so I figure it might be pretty good. Pretty good? Blew my fuckin’ mind. Senseless, lyserging noise that suddenly burbles into a beat and then falls away from it just as quickly. Chaos tweaked into something even more alien. Discordant, atonal Hell of sound. 616/666 <fishead>
Don’t Want To Lose
If you’re thinking this might be the same EPC project that Alec Empire’s been doing… Then you’re wrong. It’s some guy named Ronan leRoux from France. Yeah, another crazy record from France. Does it have something to do with wearing speedos on topless beaches or are they putting something in the water out there?? Who knows, who cares. Fischkopf finishes things up with one more burst of what you’ve come to expect… that is: fucked beats and fucked noise, voices wafting out of oblivion and back into it. Three tracks of fast and nasty rhythms that pummel you like a sadist’s handjob. “R 624-2” sounds like one of the tracks from the VDD Energise release on SixSixtySix, but more weird and less ominous. While “Infectious Properties” comes across as a sinister, noisier mix of “R 624-2”. The one slower track, “Where do you go?”, sounds nothing like a pop hit by Menudo wannabes No Mercy, and consequently I’ve been playing it to death. 666/666
Lukas vs. Randy
Everybody and their dog has been down on IS lately, often with good reason, but the first side of this record plants a hard spurting dick deep in the ass off anyone who claims that IS can’t get it up anymore. FSSU is great, down-tempo acid storming that manages the difficult task of being undeniably hard and groovy at the same time. The second side, on the other hand, opens with the title track which sounds like the sort of thing that tries to be experimental and noisy, but ends up sounding sloppy. Closes out with Acid Riots- a piece of bleepcore that disintegrates into a tangle of feedback. Still, FSSU could pull sperm from a limp cock, so it gets 623/666. <fishead>
GGM vs. Extrement
Hard Of Hearing. UK
“Extreme Hardcore Shit” starts off this five tracker with just about the WORST intro I’ve ever heard. It’s absolutely horrid and unmixable AND it sounds like a trainwreck by itself. Then it starts poking fun at everybody’s favourite Brooklyn-based hardcore label and it’s an uphill ride from there. Some oldschool ‘human beatbox’ sounds and some playful jabs at the twats in Rotterdam in “I Can’t Take This Shit” make that one worth cranking on a large system, but my pick is “The Git Hour!” I especially love the sample towards the end that sounds like precisely the sort of odd children’s TV that warps the mind of England’s youth and steers them ever further away from oral hygiene. Rock on! “Cockrot” and “Nobrash” are speedcore gibberish that sound much better through big speakers than they do through the shitty rig I’ve got in my room… but, whatever right? If you like the senseless throb of 250+bpm venereal disease then this is right up your unwiped back alley… if you don’t, then you’re a pussy. 633/666 <fishead>
This one sounds more like something from Reload than something from Industrial Strength. Beats per minute are WAY down to about 150bpm on the “Skanner” mixes on the b-side, and “X-Play” on the first side is either in the neighborhood of 110 or 140, depending on what speed you play it at (it says 33, but IS always seems to print the wrong speed on the label). That said, it’s a good record and it ventures off in a direction that I’d like to see more tracks go in: dark and moody with a deep drums. It’s a little plodding, though, and the Manu le Malin mix of “Skanner” is a little too sparse for my liking. 489/666 <fishead>
Doormouse + Unibomber
Distort 02, USA
The Cult Of AOL track from the Fuckin’ Doormouse cassette finally makes it to wax. I’ve only been waiting about a year for it. It’s a different mix on this release, which is too bad ’cause frankly that intro of dial tones and connecting modems is the sort of thing that I’d love to use to freak people right the fuck out. Also compiled on the Doormouse side is the ever-popular Dolemite track… now I’m just waiting for the Beer track from his Even Furthur set to get pressed. I know you’re reading so hurry it up, punk ass!! Flip the record for the Unibomber side which is, imho, a LOT stronger this time around. Maybe it’s the fact that this is a better pressing than Distort 1 or maybe his tracks are kicking more ass. Jungle is faster than most of the d’n’b out there making it very easy to use as a segue into some solid four kick beats making it all but indispensable in recent weeks. Sadist follows things up with a mix-friendly track littered with samples from old horror flick trailers. As an added bonus there’s a block of scratch material closing out this side of the record… includes everybody’s favourite Australian telling you to fuck off, which is perfect for playing really loud when your neighbors won’t make their damn, fool dog shut up. 637/666 <fishead>
Pimax / Zip & Morg / Core Tex Labs
Isterecord 01, France
Nice selection of break beating tracks. One side is loaded with a bed of kick drums to keep things sane, but the other side breaks free and gets a little abstract. Tasty all around and nothing cheesy. It’s all in the 200bpm range and playable as all hell. Not exactly the sort of thing that will dominate a set and have people trainspotting, but it doesn’t seem to care as I’ve been finding it on my decks a hell of a lot. As much tool as tune. it’s a versatile record that I like more now than when I bought it. 465/666 <fishead>
Wide Sierra De Metal Trippe”]
Hangars Liquides 003, France
Did somebody say they were looking for something fast?? Leave it to the French. Laurent Mialon (aka La Peste) casually throws out a quartet of brain-damaged tracks. Wide Sierra… is the sort of thing that can be casually worked into a straight up techno set as it fluctuates between a moderately paced 150bpm and a tasty 300… you can smell the minds frying. Very nice track and it slips into the mix with little or no difficulty. Aside from La Scandale Du Sample Contamine which clocks at 125bpm the rest of the record is dizzying speedcore that manages to effectively combat the myth that speed kills the groove. 619/666 <fishead>
Liz N. Eliaz
Provision 004, France
Provision busts out again with a two track effort by label honcho Liz N. Eliaz. Species populates the A-side and isn’t what I’ve come to expect from the label. Doesn’t really attack you at all, in fact it’s a sort of retro sounding acid-trance tune. Torn Lace Microspace more than makes up for it, though. Kicking in with a barrage of straight noise, this is THE shit. Sounds like the exact same kick drum that made Pow Low on Mokum as good as it was (fuck Chosen Few that Dano record is the best thing the label ever did… if you disregard that first track full of Fear Factory riffs). Anyhow… Torn Lace Microspace roughly 250bpm, lotsa noise with a clean kick drum to die for. Any questions? 510/666 <fishead>
XKV8 featuring Overtkill & Le Lascar
Shit For You
Hangars Liquides 002, France
Sophomore effort from this experimental label out of France. This one follows up the debut 12″ by EPC (which, unfortunately I haven’t been able to track down). Four tracks of relentless speedcore coupled with vocal samples so completely mangled I can’t even discern what language they’re in. Christ with a catheter these kids play rough. Get ready to drop the slider down to -8 ’cause these tracks have the sort of production quality that makes ’em mixable, but they’ve also got the sort of speed that makes you wish for a pitch slider with as much range as Ron Jeremy’s fabled rhythm stick.
Psychick Genocide 2, France
Unless you can show me a collection of speed garage records or some other evidence of severe mental retardation you should be shot on sight for not being able to fish this out of your record collection to show to me. I don’t care if you live under a large rock in the middle of Lake Superior, you should track this bitch down and buy it, even if it means you have to pawn a testicle to do so.
Four tracks by Laurent Ho that give me a hard-on the size of the Eiffel Tower. Well, in fairness the first side isn’t doesn’t completely blow me away… it’s good and does build up to some pretty intense moments but it falls a little short… kinda like when your partner runs to the bathroom to spit our your load… Feels good, but there’s something lacking. Octotone on the flip more than makes up for any inadequacies though. This is the one that takes the pop shot in the kisser and swallows it all down time and time again. One of the most distorted, mind ripping, noise fests to greet my humble ears in a long while. Laurent Ho finds the dent he left in my ass and kicks it again for good measure. This one is off the scale completely. <fishead>
Stryg Dem Stramme
Cryptic 10″ with next to no info other than the artist and the song titles. I haven’t the faintest idea about the label or the country of origin, however… don’t fret too hard if you can’t find it. It’s pretty decent, but it ain’t all that. Both tracks are in the same vein of dark hardcore… not quite the doom core of the Kotzaak label, mind you, but still pretty menacing. Reminds me a bit of the Sons Of Gundso release on Drop Bass, but without the acid lines… Tempo depends on whether you let it go at 45 or 33… it keeps the same feel at both speeds but hits in a vastly different range, obviously. 344/666 <fishead>
Bastard Loud 015, USA
Grab a bag of nachos and get ready for a barn burner ’cause the A-side has all the bite of some nasty salsa. This record might have shipped from New York City, but the flavour tells your taste buds that this spicy habanero came from down south. Texas, to be exact. Dead Channel delivers with a crunchy surprise that hits with an initial burn and lingers in your mouth long enough to draw a layer of sweat across your brow. Skeptikal and Main Damage are no-nonsense and cheese-free. Lots of grit and crunch and punch to leave you clutching your gut. Take some Pepto Bismal and a nap, ’cause it only gets fiercer. The other side opens up with Defective: the after burn. Stick your ass in the bathtub, pray for a bidet or something. It’s the gift that keeps on giving. Distorted kick drums out the arse, tearing and burning as they spew forth and leave you sitting in the ring of fire. Black Jack rounds things out, but really doesn’t do all that much for me. Hip hop loops that don’t leave much more than a bad taste in my mouth. Still, can’t fault the whole meal and three outta four ain’t bad. 513/666 <fishead>
Kultbox 004, USA
This record opens has the nastiest intro since that bit of evil on the second side of the Hate Tank 2×12″… Ominous bassline, preacher talking about possession by the devil and faster than you can raise your horns and hail Satan the candy ravers have left the building. False Starts is all about 200bpm breaks run through some tasty effects with a dark bassline in tow. No complaints here… In fact it gets some praise for blurring the line between jungle and hardcore better than just about anything I’ve heard yet.
The rest of the EP isn’t quite as fierce, but it’s solid nonetheless. Very Scary Indeed on the flip side loads you up with an overwhelming bassline and while there isn’t enough speed to double you over in shock, there’s still more than enough force to knock the wind out of you. Open the box and walk the red carpet pathway to hell. We’re waiting for you. 609/666 <fishead>
Le Freak Est Mort??
Deadly Systems 003, USA
Distorted distortion, as we’ve all come to expect from Mr. Freak. Still hasn’t done anything that tops the sheer brutality of his stuff on Kill Out, but neither has anyone else…and I’ve gotta give him a lot of credit for never being too far off the mark. This time out it’s a pack of tracks that look loud before you drop the needle and don’t disappoint once you do. 4 To The Floor will satisfy the speed demons out there by ripping shit up at 294bpm… but (for once) I’m siding with the slowest track on the record as my personal choice. Planet Core sounds like Future Sound Of London’s Far-Out Son Of Lung fed into a sausage maker. In fact, you’d have a hard time convincing me that that’s not EXACTLY what it is… listen to ’em side by side and compare…
Syntax rounds out the trio and clocks somewhere between the other two… all around solid record from Deadly Buda’s fledgling label. 531/666 <fishead>
Karnage 01, France
Stella Michelson rears her warped head on yet another imprint. Karnage is to Fraktal records as our old pal Damien was to the Dark Lord… The bastard son cursing the world with his very existence. Harder, darker and edgier than her work for Fischkopf this is a welcome addition to the growing heap of records I own bearing her name. This one sports four full-length tracks and one short slice of demonic weirdness. Pressing is pretty crap, but the tracks are pretty sweet. Buy it so that next time they can afford better wax. 478/666 <fishead>
The 6th release on Sixshooter brings you more breakcore by Lasse Steen. So, here begins the search for something new. The first track, Salza in the Middle, is by far my favorite… dark, distorted slow beats with a spooky, droning melody. When I close my eyes I can just see the Satanists dancing around the soon-to-be-sacrificed. Spinning Treble, on the a-side and Et Dyt I Bamsen, on the b-side (in which I swear I recognize a breakbeat-loop) are the closest to traditional speedcore you’re going to get on this release. The deviant tracks are once again the best. Beat J.R. on the a-side brings us something new… I think this is Lasse Steen’s interpretation of drum ‘n’ bass. Freaky and insanely distorted as usual. The b-side’s opener Analized Integrity is the closest you’re going to get to a 130 BPM-stomper on this release… the rest is nothing more than Lasse Steen and his equipment on crack. If you know his other work you know that last comment was a positive one. <Eye-D>
The Darkness label operating out of Belgium is where Lasse Steen releases his tracks that are closest to straight-up hardcore. Those who know Lasse Steen’s work know that his interpretation of straight-up hardcore leans as far away from straight-up hardcore as is possible without losing connection with the term. All four of these tracks are dark as fuck and are again very trancey, as were the other Darkness-releases. Steen’s tracks always go for the hypnotic effect in the melodies rather than any of the other effects you can use to create “hardness” in music. Try to combine this in your thoughts with the distortion set a little higher than it should be and you’ve got it. My favorites on this release are WSHBR 2, the opener on the b-side (which sounds a little like a slowed down version of a track on Special Forces) and Fun Er Fin, the second track on the a-side. <Eye-D>
Snipers at Work
Amazing fuck chop break core madness. Scud’s “Mash the Place Up” opens the AA side with a noise induced fuck step bang bang. By far the most jungle of the tracks, the noisescape sets the standard for this EP. Five more tracks of noise breaks kill your mind with walloping 909 kicks and more than enough screeching to send your house cat into a retardo skitzoid freak out. Buy on sight. <franny>
Dead End 08
Dead End, France
Four tracks of straight up noise and speed. Not too heavy on obvious samples, although strangely enough Daft Punk’s “Da Funk” does get dropped in just long enough to freak you out. Sounds corny, but it ain’t. As always, another solid release from Dead End. <bilbo>
The Beast Fuckers
Veni, Vidi, Vici
The Label side is a fine chunk of pounding 170 bpm live business that progresses into a noise monster of hardcore techno tweaking. Have I told you about all of the hookers that hang out in front of our store. “I’ll suck yo dick fo a cigorate”. Yeah, bitch, and I’ll punch you in that doped-up lardball you call a noggin, all for free. Get the fuck off my block. Flipside wails away with distortion feed fest that just keeps hitting and hitting, over and over. Throw up the Bass Fist and let it roll. The last track is more on the tame side but would do well as a quick slap mixed interlude. One of my favorite Beast products so far. <MSG>
In A Name Of
Never Forget, Germany
Second release for this seemingly anti-Nazi camp, although it could very well be the other way around. In my opinion a big improvement over the first release. Three tracks of dark speed material that roll with tacatoed kicks and head-banging minimal synths. The fourth track is a scarecore noise affair that moves into lazily arpegiating synths that loop at the end. <monkey>
Rage Reset, Australia
Six more tracks from Sydney’s hardest. “This Side” opens with “Stakka Metus”, a PCP flavored dark grinder that thumps at 190, a definite crossover appeal here to the less hard floors. “Sci-Fi” makes it ruffer with the sounds we’ve come to love from Rage Reset. 250 bpm dark synth madness. “Destroyer” opens the flip with samples from none other than Ween rampaging over distort-o-matic percussion. Mean. This side is rounded out by more RR up tempo material and a strange almost trance track entitled “Peace, Love, and Aggression” that I still can’t make my mind up on. Solid as usual. <franni>
Geoff da Chef
After the last few releases on Violent I was a bit shady on the idea of getting more but I had to give it a try. Glad I did. Geoff da Chef offers up four solid bangers of speedcore. Go for the inside on each side with funky mix ups of old school hip hop breaks and gabber shit. Outside tracks stick with more of the traditional speed set up with old style synths and such. My confidence is getting restored. Keep it coming. <frick>
Septic Torso EP
Second release on this limb-hacking imprint. The first release was pretty damn good, and this one tops it. Distorted broken beats with distorted bass lines. Jungle music for the non-classy. Take off your Hilfinger gear, leave the tobacco out of your joint, grab a Bud instead of that import shit and rock to some real rollers. With jungle getting so damn interesting (wait, is that sarcasm I smell) it’s a pleasure to see some heads from the hardside of things putting their own spin on things. Fast enough to mix with slower hardcore and slow enough to mix with faster jungle. Innovation, meet jungle. Jungle, meet innovation. Now shake hands. Finish up with a blast of rolling 909 hard shit <ricky retardo>
More madness from Aaron Lubinski, one third of Nasenbluten. Amiga’s make funny noises over happily under-produced sludgefests. For all of you track hunters, this one’s got “USS Titan” on it. Scabby music from a guy that cleans old people’s genitalia all day. The King of strange samples and slappy percussion back in full effect, y’all. <blaine>
Digital Hut 08
Digital Hut, US
More stuff from Lasse (Choose) Steen. This guy puts out more stuff than any other producer around these days, and to be quite honest, I was getting a bit sick of it. This record happens to be an exception. Dark and hard as usual with acid splattering all over the place. One track sounds like some of the material put out under the Skullblower alias, fast and brutal. Two of the tracks are reminiscent of earlier stuff on Drop Bass with moody synths added. Also present are two washy analog synth chunks. <dick>
Digital Hut 07
Digital Hut, US
Two damn mean tracks of effects-laden speed noisecore that sound like the Beast himself is screaming through a 909. The flip gives a great hard dark synth driven breakcore track that drops into a head nodder for a few measures midway. Last track is slow pounding chunky techno with a PCP influence. Without a doubt, worth the domestic price. <Bill>
Bloody Fist 16
Latest and hopefully not last Bloody Fist, done by the man himself, Mark N. Roughly 6 tracks opening up with the funniest damn intro, ‘Happiness is coming…’, worth the price of the record alone. Next up is a Hip-Hop,/breakbeat track with Ice Cube samples, followed by a usual Fist style 909 remix of Snap’s, ‘I’ve got the Power’. Next up is a short dis on Sydney. Flip for a Hip-Hop scratch fest, followed by my pick of this one, a nice long intro with loads of Aussie samples, ‘Fucking Shut It!!,’ followed by a nice speedcore track with some NightRider synths and acid bleeps. The Bloody Fist you expect and then some. <rick>
Die Dresdner StadtmisiKUNTen
Suburban Trash 980512001
Here it is, the one that everyone is wondering about. You know the one with the beautiful classical music sample which works it way into a muddy noize feast? If not, you know that sound you get when you unplug and RCA plug at high volume? OK sample that sound and use it for a kick drum set to a rhythm that only a retarded chicken could follow. Now throw in a little Vivaldi and a distortion box. Play on a loud system and pretend you are that chicken. Pure genius. Also worth a mention on here is ‘deli-cunts+more’ a nice distorted techno pounder. Best record in ages. <unibomber>
Sound off, kids. Now’s yer time to be heard… While most of my time is consumed with finding, playing and listening to new records I also come across a lot of tapes and discs. Here’s the pick of the litter.
In-fuckin’-credible tape from an Iowa native now calling San Francisco home. Tape starts out with Stepping Stone, a punk/hardcore crossover loaded with Minor Threat samples… this is the only weak link in the chain folks… once this is over you’re into the meat of the beast. Heavily distorted, angry and noisy. Only 30 minutes long, but hard as fuckin’ nails.
First cassette release from Milwaukee’s own Distort. Gritty and raw… only things missing are a toilet photo and that catchy BEER track that got played at Furthur. Order one today and feed this poor bastard… last time I saw him he ate all my bread.
Existance Is Punishment v.01
Wrong Island represents with an array of sickness showcasing the many styles this crew is capable of. Pulling from a wide variety of influences this tape runs through a lot of sounds, but never fails to be hard.
This New Jersey hardcore and power electronics fanatic is also the guy behind Assume Power Focus magazine. Loaded with choice sampling (Cannibal Ferox vs. South Park!) and glorious noise… check his shit out.
New ENRG. Level/Freakshow Sampler v1
Indiana pukes up some more skull crackin’ noise. Freakshow Sampler is a taste of things to come and features tracks from their first vinyl release (see review) as well as some unreleased goodies. New ENGR Level is a tortured monster created by the frankenstein hands of Dr. Butcher MD.
Experience nedracore. Experience the tortured mind of Davros. If you can’t find the money then kill your neighbor’s cat and sell it to the local butcher shop. Accept no excuses. Exterminate the doctor? Exterminate the world!
The musical product of an extended sexual encounter between T.S. Monk, Squarepusher and the Bloody Fist crew. Complex and fucked up rhythms, odd sampling and hard beats mean that this tape is punk as fuck. Hard enough to take down buildings.
Two sixty minute mixes, one jungle, one hard. First mix is filled with all the hard and jump-up you really want to hear. At the end of this one you are greeted to a short hip-hop, cut, scratch and sample section you only wish you could do. Hard mix starts off with some dark jungle, Panacea style and before you know it you are slammed into a distorted 4/4 beat. Tracks range from Nasenbluten to No-tek. Tight mixing, better scratching, buy this now and masterbate on both covers. <unibomber>
OK, the mystery man shows his head again. First stuff I heard from him was more straight forward ‘jungle,’ yet it didn’t really sound like anything I had heard before. Well luck has it that a CD full of stuff made its way to Stallis only to be borrowed, borrowed, borrowed and lost in a span of 2 days. This time around we hear distortion and lots of it. Distorted breakbeats chopped to hell, hard kicks, video game noizes and the occasional 4/4 909 kick hear and there. Think some DHR only 12 times better. Get at all costs. Look for vinyl release on Distort. <unibomber>
Adjust lays down a 30 minute, tight as fuck mix of hardcore, hard acid and hip hop. The Equinauts follow it up with 30 minutes of sample heavy, effects laden tracks that prove that Detroit isn’t about just soulful techno, it’s about good music.
Vinyl Communications – VC138
FUCK YEAH!! Delta 9 unleashes a destructive mix of noise culled mostly from the archives at Vinyl Communications, but also featuring cuts from Self Abuse, Praxis and Relapse. Two mixes separated by four previously unreleased tracks. Search and enjoy.