Variolación Frenética cassette

I have reviewed several pandemic projects in the last few months, coming from different parts of the world, and they all share something: a feeling of brutal urgency to connect and shout out the current state of the world. And what’s more, they’re all great. VARIOLACIÓN does not escape this new paradigm. This is a four-piece hardcore band from Portland, Oregon, with components from other bands like PROHIBITED, TOTAL WAR, DEAD HUNT, and FALSE RITUAL. I love the nods to the past like that “Pretty Vacant” riff that opens the brutal “Sombra de Humo” or the repeated chorus of “Obsesión Mortal” reminiscent of OLHO SECO. Sonically, this is political hardcore that paints scenarios of everyday terror (misogyny, animal cruelty, war, etc.) through raw and primitive noise, very much in the vein of Mexican bands like M.E.L.I. and SS-20. “Massacre de Inocentes” has an ear-splitting guitar solo that is just fantastic. “Castillo Negro” has a pretty amazing First Wave of Black Metal riff vibe to it. To sum up, seven great songs from a band that hopefully won’t remain just a quarantine project.