Axe Rash / Therapy split EP

Stockholm’s AXE RASH have, and always will, it seems, provide straight, simple, raw, and heavy metallic D-beat to the masses. This, however, is a similar merge with American hardcore as we’ve seen with bands à la WARTHOG, and the lyrics to each of their two songs are humorous, particularly on the opener “Ostrich Man.” Great stuff. THERAPY from San Diego, while providing some great music as well, doesn’t have quite the force that AXE RASH has in their songs, but nonetheless is a promising band. The first couple of their songs lack a bit, but “Power” is mental. I really felt I was being transported to seeing the band in person via this song, which few records can accomplish. Ultimately, the truly exciting aspect lies in the A-side, but it’s still worth taking the time aside for a full listen.

Therapy Omen EP

Fucking huge sounding, super energetic D-beat-based hardcore, what the fuck is not to like here? Hard to decide what to highlight first, the sick vocals or the crazed drumming or the raw riffage. While there’s a bit more of an experimental spirit in the margins here compared to their earlier releases, confined to some trippy song intros and breaks, please rest assured that the backbone of pure fucking hardcore remains firmly intact. San Diego’s THERAPY are exemplary of the DIY spirit in 2020: performing a ton, putting on gigs, and always hustling for both their band and their scene. It is a tremendous comfort to me that while over-hyped mediocre trend bands will come and go, there will always be bands like THERAPY keeping it real where it counts. Mandatory for fans of the style and for hardcore lifers in general.