Gonza Perez

Rejekts Manmade Hell EP

Boston hardcore punk pogo exciters. Angry vocals, simple yet classically effective punk, blasting with a messy craziness of stabbing guitars and never-ending ranting drums. Favorite track: “Manmade Hell,” for some very well-executed stomping hardcore. Nice frantic cadences filled with the violence of classic USHC punk and strident guitars. Give ‘em a go. I will check out No Norms Records after this one. Fresh-feeling for pure raw punk with slightly faster tempos, full of traces of classical times yet enforced by newer turns.

Crosshairs Crosshairs demo cassette

Debut from British Columbia, Canada’s punk and noisy garage trio, with slashing, rusty guitars and a handful of progressive open riffs mixed with anthemic, angry vocals. Deep, clean cuts of chainsaw guitar that are garage revival as hell, resulting in messy punk’n’roll filled with garage vibes and upfront drums. Four tracks with similar cadences as classic mid-’80s punk, plus a twist of garage-y noises.

Loose Lid Loose Lid cassette

Midwest hardcore that’s heavily distorted and poorly recorded, resulting in crazy raw punk. Seems recorded live or at home, which I like. Mad and noisy, filled with crusty vibes close to D-beat but much more chaotic, it seems like something from decades ago. Suggested track: “Unite,” offering us some fresh cuts exuding violence. Really dig the vocals on this messy chunk of hardcore punk. If they were searching for a live vibe, they achieved it. Recommend the use of headphones for this one, or you’ll miss a lot of things—listening first on speakers, I didn’t like it a bit, but then I gave them another chance on headphones and it was way better. Interesting raw darkness impregnated in the songs’ raw energy, delivering extreme sounds comparable to those in glorious ’80s USHC.

Pressure Pin Superficial Feature EP

Montreal duo that will make you dance the pogo to the rhythm of frantic egg-punk, with even more garage-y noise than egg-punkers usually advocate. New wave artsy punk, with the use of a real voice with light effects being a highlight. Favorite track: “A New Movie.” Stop’n’go cadences and exquisite use of synth, relentless drums, and psychic trance guitars that combine beautifully. We have before our eyes an extreme form of egg-punk, where sick rawness in the vocals makes it much more interesting compared to DEVO-infused patients. Honorable mention to the experimental nature of “Limited Movement,” adding new sounds to the eggy situation and upping the scale by introducing power chord changes following the never stopping drums, giving this track the status of “eggy symphony.” Highly recommended for lovers of expanded keyboard sounds used smartly. Resourceful duo, indeed.

Squander The Western Nightmare Continues… cassette

Halifax’s anarcho deadbeaters start with a great classical bass line in the UK82 tradition, but frankly, afterwards I utterly disliked the reverb or delay (ab)used here to create the ambience, lowering the quality of the vocals, instruments, and force that we could have otherwise encountered here. It all comes off as a messy, reverbed and delayed version of D-beat that doesn’t appeal to me. It lacks precision and equalization, losing the vibe of the drums and guitars. Nice artwork for the cover, though…

Offside Reidars This is Now EP

Raw-charged Finnish hardcore punk rock adventure—punk veterans getting into hardcore punk realms and singing in English, excepting one song. Songs verse on WWIII, contemporaneous systemic obedience, the spread of global terror, disconformity, and the Eurocentric consumption of underdeveloped economies, reminding me of the blunt lyricism and sarcasm of the DEAD KENNEDYS. They seem heavily influenced by mid-’80s punk rock, merging D-beat with classic punk cuts and cadences in line with the venerated UK82 sound. Seems they were having fun recording this.

Systemik Viølence Negative Mangel Attitude LP

Cathartic maniacal screams and great sound all around from these chaos-bringers and riot-exciters from Lisbon. Thrash mayhem of blackened punk with fast tempos and sick drum cuts that never stop and stomp on you through the whole ten-track course. This is the sixth release from these Portuguese mad people, delivering a fusion between blackened metallic punk and classic USHC cadences in an almost perfect balance. Imagine BAD BRAINS and MERCYFUL FATE entered the blender and got out ready to drink it all in a second—I mean a frenzied, crazy feeling. All tracks are rippers in their own way. Sick artwork on the cover from these sick metal punkers. Good riffage, good blastbeating, and the vocals ain’t a cut-and-paste in any way, with colors very distinguished in-between.

Moratory F.P.F.W. demo cassette

And now we travel to St. Petersburg, Russia to get ourselves a whiff of metal punk delivered by MORATORY, with their demo Fuck Politics Fuck War. Released in November 2022, though they’ve been around since 2015, it updates more speed metal structures in their songs and slows the tempo. Extra credit for the translated lyrics on their Bandcamp page, versing on anti-war poetry and a feeling of constant struggle in their sound and words. Suggested track: “Pod Nenasytnym Nebom.” Great soloing parts for the guitars and never-stopping drums for this band merging D-beat and metallic forms of punk.

V/A Four in the Bag EP

Here and Now, Thrash Tapes, and Vanilla Thunder compiled this four-way split EP (with MAXXPOWER, BASTARD COLLECTIVE, SICK BURN, and NO COMPLY), assuring that crust powerviolence is alive and well. Flaming fastcore and powerviolence are all to the front with BASTARD COLLECTIVE’s “In Decline,” the track that works as a bridge between ever-ranting songs on this abrasive, corrosive, and sharp split. Suggested tracks: “Fucking Why?” by SICK BURN, and the thirteen-seconds-long “Home Improvement” from MAXXPOWER.

Pharma See EP

Four-piece Detroit four-piece with an EP that exudes a crunchy sound all around—blunt force mayhem hardcore punk and chaotic vibes. Demonic vocals and aggressive drums, creating groovy crust punk filled with guitar pick-ups generating disturbance. Suggested tracks: “End of Days” and “Relax.” Abrasive palm-mutes and raging vocals for blasting your mind, in six tracks averaging out to less than two minutes per song.

Muck Demo 2023 cassette

Post-hardcore gooners salute, as Richmond’s MUCK comes to provide the rage-compressed vocals and frenzy cadences you crave. Mid-paced tempos with clockwork rhythms that go full straight-up hardcore punk with accompanying guitars that tweak and screech from time to time. Great demo, eager to hear more.

Ensanguined Powering Death EP

Orlando, Florida’s death thrash pack featuring violent guitars and demonic, crazed, mumbled and in-trance vocals. Great sludgy parts that end on blunt palm-mutes or open strident guitars, and sweet drums that come from the sludgiest tempos into hardcore punk in a millisecond, really digging that combo. Filled with vicious anger and almost a rabid vibe, feels extracted from another era of metal punk with touches from nowadays. Suggested track: “The Night Knocks.” The chains and shackles seem to be shaking in their dungeon chambers.

Rank Brave New Lows 12″

Good old “rager” there, mates. Bristol UKHC that goes full-on raging hardcore punk, coming near fastcore speed as well. Anti-conservative message in a British context and anti-politics stances with solid lyrics. Suggested track: “Feels Like the End,” for a padded cell experience.

Cel Ray Cellular Raymond cassette

Six-track cassette from this lo-fi, female-fronted fast-paced post-punk/garage band from Chicago, with a touch of Aussies AMYL AND THE SNIFFERS in the intention and style of vocals. “Clock Me Out” is the choice track, creating the right amount of progression—sick bass line and tasty clocking guitars. Give ‘em a listen.

Burning Kross Burning Kross LP

Six-track LP from these Belgian hardcore punks, filled with anger and versing on anti-fascist and anti-racist ideals. From Oostakker near Ghantes, BURNING KROSS delivers violent and fast-paced hardcore punk with crust and D-beat references and deep bass vocals ready to fight. Extra points for the album cover art featuring a KKK scumbag receiving a burning cross right in their torso.

George Crustanza Billionaire Blastoff cassette

This band with members from San Francisco and Oakland delivers vibrant, crusty hardcore punk, with pinched, aggressive vocals and high-pitched guitars that deliver rocky riffs all around. Drums are on-point with bass lines that never seem to stop. The Bay Area continues to give us fast hardcore punk bands. Favorite tracks: “GTFO” and “Hiking Stomp.” Catch them playing live, as it must be a thrill—this cassette exudes groove and aggression.

Terror Y Miseria Destruyendo y Sembrando LP

Anarcho-punk project heavily linked with crust and hardcore, from a collective of members that are from Spain and Argentina. Destruyendo y Sembrando was recorded between 2020 and 2021 in both countries mentioned, and features artwork illustrated by Max Vadalá, a graphic artist active in punk subculture mostly in Argentina and Latin America. The album compiles ten tracks about anarchy and the present state of the oppressive system of state domination, the media’s dominance over the population, immigration and anti-terrorism politics, and the everyday struggle against the capitalist status quo. Favorite tracks: “Destruyendo y Sembrando,” with a powerful poetic evocation about monotony and inertia and alienation, and “Urubu,” more aligned with a street punk tempo. Full of passion and heart, enthusiastically recommended for those who believe in and want a better world with no oppression or state violence, and are willing to stand and give the daily fight against government power.

Clarko Welcome to Clarko LP

Histrionic vocals and naughty guitar riffs coming from Reno, NV on this ten-track new wave brain-punk LP. DEVO-energy synth punk with a catchy, eggy garage twist, and even some early TELEVISION vibes in terms of tension, pauses, and the use of high notes. Synth and loop effects hit hard on this, achieving great balance (check the intro and the song “Alien Touch,” where the full spectrum of sounds and instruments merge and greet each other), but it also has a spacious sound filled with instrumental experimentation. Pretty much straightforward lyrics that verse on existentialism, with “Stifled” and “Your Time” being my favorite tracks on this release.

Masque Demo 2023 cassette

Weird and messy crust punk with no surprises coming from Portland, Oregon. An angry, non-stop screaming voice with no direction, plus an overlap of noisy guitars and ranting drums. An eight-track demo where intrigue and mystery are promised, but I still got none of it.

Goblin Daycare Q: EP? A: EP!! cassette

Really digging this debut cassette from Istanbul, Turkey’s GOBLIN DAYCARE. “Mama Goblin” does it all in this project, combining bedroom synth waves with garage punk and resulting in an equation that reaches the highest level of egginess that weird punk could reach. Lo-fi punk maniacs and DEVO-core worshipers casting sounds with deranged guitars quite in line with the Spanish band PRISON AFFAIR, good mashing synth mayhem, and heavily reverbed electronic drums, plus an on-point distorted voice that’s still audible with non-stop ranting in the fashion of cyberpunk band WWW (and even reminiscent of Jello Biafra’s vocal register) and a bit of DEVO’s stop-and-go songwriting. Imagine if DEVO and Jello were fighting in a steamy basement and add it all to the experience of surfing space in a videogame. Suggested tracks: “Coup De Grace” and “Officer Down.” Things are getting quite eggy in the realm of weird punk.

Recedent Somnia Incoming Nightmare LP

Mid-paced metallic hardcore with melodic tweaks and crusty vocals from Rennes, France. Filled with the sounds of classic 2010s melodic hardcore with soft touches of crust. On their second work included here (the Incoming Death EP released in 2021), they cling to even more melodic sources and even slower cadences, resulting in redundant and similar songs in-between. The anthemic choruses kind of in the middle of some of the songs just haven’t worked out for me. Suggested tracks: “Our Destiny” for slightly faster tempos, and “Inside Madness” for some sludgy tunes.

Taünt Taünt demo cassette

Blackened noisecore filled with hints of powerviolence, coming up from Albuquerque, New Mexico. Use headphones for a better experience, as the vocals are heavily echoed and synth mayhem is strong in this one. Suggested tracks: “Dawn” and “No” (“Future dreams / Days of peace / Broken bombs / Nature keeps / Hunger fed / All released / Open arms / Can human escape? / No.”). This debut consists of five relentless tracks in less than six minutes, containing a noisy intro with detonations and even fighting video game sounds. Extra credit for the lyrics being on their Bandcamp site, which happen to be synthetic yet very good. Great noisy start for TAÜNT, keep ‘em coming!

Obsoletos Obsoletos demo cassette

Garage punk project from Chile, with frantic vocals talking about existence and systemic disposable culture. Bits of post-punk, but primarily focusing on the garage-y side of punk, with wide open, high-pitched reverbed guitars that go along just fine with the vocal exultation that leads the music. The formula might sound redundant as each song is similar to the others, but all of the three tracks have something interesting and different to offer, even nodding to classic punk rock as in “Pandilla Agresiva,” which reminds me of high-energy early NEW YORK DOLLS. Solid and interesting demo, I’m eager to hear more.

Violent Pigz The Night a Pig Came Home! cassette

Japanese hardcore punk band that’s heavily influenced by classic West Coast hardcore punk, and especially hardcore and skate punk from the early ’80s in line with the legendary CIRCLE JERKS, TSOL, and D.I. (this last reference linked directly to the label that released this, coming from Orange County). Aggressive and fast tempos, lyrics in English, and expeditive yet sufficient drums with good solid beats. Released in January 2023 but it seems to be from another era, and it sums up the band’s activity from 2016–2022. Suggested track: “Fix and Insert.”

Gonk Oh My Gonk! cassette

Alex Sandoval’s bedroom solo project from Salt Lake City, Utah merges lo-fi with softcore egg-punk, blending programmed drums that lack force and a submarine telephone conversation effect on the vocals that make it quite monotonous. Some guitar riffs are sweet and in line with egg-punk referents PRISON AFFAIR. This one might be right up your alley if you dig everything eggy, but it just didn’t hit the spot for me.

Nukke Virtue Signaling EP

An EP of six tracks in eight minutes, released by Portugal’s NUKKE. Pandemic-inspired bleak metal punk with lyrics heavily influenced with sociopolitical content and a lexicon about consumer culture, the dark outcomes of social media and its sinister status machinery, social inequity and injustice, and even quite polemic thoughts and stances regarding the coronavirus and the world’s situation in quarantine. Metal-infused hardcore with good drumming and guitar riffing of a crude metal nature.

Shitty Life Limits to Growth EP

Parma, Italy won’t stop surprising us with their garage punk releases, like their fellow residents DADAR (more egg-punk, but still on the same wavelength). On this occasion, we have SHITTY LIFE delivering a frantic, fast-paced garage punk seven-track EP, full of energy, histrionic high-pitched guitars, and consonant screaming vocals very much singing along with the band’s overall rhythm. Reverb and tone changes are on-point, with a good non-stop drumming. Tune your chitarrino for this one. Favorite track: “In the Corner,” the one instrumental song, as it gives me a new wave feeling somehow related to skating and roaming the streets with friends; solid good.

RF7 Weight of the World LP reissue

Twelve-track LP originally released in 1981 by Felix Alanis’s label Smoke Seven Records, reissued by Puke N Vomit. Classic hardcore punk from Southern California (Simi Valley), reminiscent of early BAD RELIGION with new wave hints. Rocky guitars with some interesting riffs, amateurish bass, sufficient drumming, deep vocals, and anthemic songs on this one—classic early USHC formula, but with a softer touch. Probably a great band to have seen live back in the day, and although lacking precision, this recording is full of the amateur passion so important for punk. This time vault discovery reissued captures the essence of an era, but for my taste, it lacks distortion and speed. Suggested tracks: “Satan’s Son” and “Jesus Loves You.”

Axxe Crazy Black Winds Blowing, An Indifferent Sky cassette

First of all, we are welcomed by a psychotic bunch of noise effects with fuzz, reverb, and an electronic blenderization from hell and a chaos from doomsday in their intro. Asbury Park, NJ metallic punk agents AXXE CRAZY is not fooling around. Ten-track cassette of metallic punk mayhem fused with D-beat and crusty vibes, but also thrash metal references and even some powerviolence. You can almost see the visceral thread left behind in each song and the cathartic feel in their demonic vocals, which are filled with anger, despair, and hate. Frenzied cadences and high-pitched guitars, plus engulfing, crazy bass lines. Suggested tracks: “Feast in the Sight of the Minds Eye” and “Pocket Full of Emeralds, Head Full of Lead.” Absolute ripper.

Glasses Compendium LP

Female-fronted band from Germany with some great screaming vocals, solid drums, and interesting guitar sounds with rocky solos blending metal and hardcore in the ’00s-style way with some sort of progressive rock. Sludgy cadences mixed with classic hardcore cuts that go by the vocals. Released by Contraszt Records from Köln, Germany, Compendium is a collection of their work between 2008 and 2020, though their last recordings in 2020 were separate from their past releases, so you seem to be hearing different pieces and different styles from time to time, losing the album’s flow. It’s interesting enough to hear metal-infused hardcore from the last two decades, Guitar-driven riffing, heavy drumming, and powerful vocals, with members of EAVES, PERTH EXPRESS, and TRAINWRECK, among others. Suggested tracks: “Spirit Crusher” and “IHYSM.”

People’s Temple I’m With the People’s Temple EP

Brooklyn, NY-based hardcore punkers released this solid eight-track EP in February 2023, aided by Roachleg Records. Filled with classic ’80s USHC nods and all its raw energy, giving us powerful, distorted guitars and good soloing, sharp, spot-on bass lines, and on-point drums with fast cadences, directly entangled with visceral vocals guided by the sharp drum cuts. A great surprise of ’80s-infused songs combining the most classic skate punk from all over, a hint of charged punk rock, and a fresh pinch of no wave in there. Put early AGENT ORANGE, DEAD BOYS, NECROS, and POISON IDEA in a blender and there you go. Suggested tracks: “Patriotic & Brain Dead” and “S.O.S.”

Argh El Silencio De Los Cromagnones EP

Temuco’s anti-new-world-order, post-apocalyptic punks. D-beat merged with classic hardcore punk featuring members of INYECCION, with lyrics touching subjects such as modern society’s surreptitious decay and the macabre system we are in, chemicals in the water poisoning us, submission to heavy technology, and abusive social domination. Ranting guitars, crazy open hi-hat D-beat drums, and a desperate maniac voice trying to warn you about the geopolitical experiments of globalization mixed with violence and chaos nowadays. Really dig the format of the songs as cautions or presages of a real near future, but also depicting stuff from our present. Chileans sure know their hardcore punk, and this themed DIY band is a faithful example. Four-track EP in under six minutes. Go give them a listen and join the forces of ARGH in order to be prepared to fight a more than grim prospect (or perhaps is it too late?).

V/A Invasión 88 LP reissue

Reissue of a total cult classic LP released in the ’80s, compiling 20 tracks of punk rock, hardcore punk, and Oi! from Argentina—one of the first Argentinian punk compilations. Features songs from LOS LAXANTES, ATTAQUE 77, DIVISION AUTISTA’s early approach to straightedge, FLEMA’s first line-up (with their later iconic singer Ricky Espinosa on guitar), EXEROICA, COMANDO SUICIDA, DEFENSA Y JUSTICIA, RIGIDEZ KADAVERICA, CONMOCION CEREBRAL, and LOS BARAJA. Originally released by Radio Tripoli Discos in December 1988 with recordings that were made between 1982–1988. It was one of my first exposures to punk as a teenager. Highly recommended for lovers ’80s punk rock and hardcore from Latin America, as it depicts Argentina’s most notorious bands at the time who were in some aspects first in their class, reaching the fiber of the feeling of an era when punk emerged and became a fully recognizable subculture in South America. Reissued by Fuego A Las Fronteras, a Basque/Mexican label that operates in Barcelona, it includes a DVD with a short film from the ’80s called Festipunk by Patra Exeroica along with the LP, which is a trip to a much yearned-for era for the first Argentinian punks, and also works as an archeological musical project for those unfamiliar. Lot of punks in these latitudes got a first glimpse at punk and listened to it in the first place back in the day because of this album, and it is still much appreciated today. Filled with songs expressing anger, anti-political statements, pure nihilism and violence, and revolt, and even polemic statements like those on behalf of COMANDO SUICIDA (I personally discourage listening to them because of their spreading of nationalist ideas). Suggested tracks and mentions: Legendary FLEMA’s early recordings like “Buscando Un Lugar,” EXEROICA, the first all-female alternative punk band from Argentina, DEFENSA Y JUSTICIA’s street punk against police forces in “Ratis,” the chaos-charged punk rock formula by RIGIDEZ KADAVERICA ranting against the system, classic punk anthem “Operación Ser Humano” from LOS BARAJA, and “Pasión de Multitudes” by ATTAQUE 77, combining football affinity with punk rock. There’s a lot to take in, but it’s worth it. Go ahead, dive into Argentina’s crazy, wild, and sometimes anakoquilombero ’80s punk!

Gatsu Generación Atormentada Tratando De Surgir Unidos cassette

Directly from the La Florida neighborhood in Santiago, Chile, we hear a loud message of positivity and great inner force being cast by this band. A solid project giving the most intense experience with inspiring lyrics, backed by a merge between classic ’90s East Coast hardcore and intense fastcore with crossover nods, great powerful drums, and thrashy, high-pitched guitar. Solid sound and lyrical performance and flow, the vocal carrier of a high-energy, never-stop-fighting vital force. The enduring urge to mosh comes right away. Classic breakdowns ending in even faster string cadences are carriers of inner strength, pumping you up—you can tell they are all good friends and didn’t just click to do this band. Self-overcoming and personal growth is encouraged, as GATSU stands for guts, exuding determination, bravery, and self-knowledge. More than an interesting project and format, not seen as often as it should be nowadays. Suggested tracks: “El Mensaje” and “El Desafío.”

V/A The Inmates are Running the Asylum: Best of K.B.D. Punk 1978–1988 CD

Vast and diverse sound range on a selection of twenty tracks from US and Germany insanely full of proto-punk and pub rock nods—there’s no way a punk rock listener won’t find references and sounds often used later by the most notorious punk bands of the late ’80s and beyond. Frantic lyrics and good tunes, filled with styles that later are the trademark of the different subgenres contained in this relic compilation. Great selection on behalf of Just 4 Fun records from Norrköping, Sweden, active since 1987. Headphones are strongly recommended for listening in order to catch all the details and layers in this one. Suggested tracks: “Black Sheep” by the NIHILISTICS, with their avant-garde hardcore punk from ’83 filled with anger, “Berlin Wall” from the histrionic Germans SUMPFPÄPSTE from ’87, and “High Heel Sex” from LIPSTICK, talking about “real live wires.” For proto-punk enthusiasts, a great archeological work on behalf of this Swedish label. Keep digging!

War//Plague Manifest Ruination LP

Minneapolis crust punk agents who have achieved fifteen years of intense DIY activity since 2008, with more than ten releases. Elaborated songs with great drums and solid riffs and socio-political content. A ten-track LP with sharp cutting cadences, blending metal punk, crust, and thrash in more than decent dosages, delivering a blunt sound and desolate tunes accompanied by a deep, screaming voice in trance. Suggested tracks: “Grief,” “Vacillation,” and “Disruption.” Punk is protest!

Zealot Zealot demo cassette

From Houston, Texas, we are delivered this graceful debut of metallic crust punk. Five tracks in under sixteen minutes of stench metal punk, filled with sludgy cadences, sick guitars with a ball-of-noise sound, and anger-filled, pain-induced vocals with a cathartic cadence releasing all, plus heavy drums that often take the speedway before leaving a spree of chaos behind them and with you. Raw energy contained and let loose at different paces, with great palm-muting and riffy strings. Suggested track: “…And How Did We Get Here?” for seekers of crust punk sounds of a more metallic nature.

Antigen / Socialstyrelsen A Sense of Dread split LP

Phobia Records from the Czech Republic won’t stop delivering crust punk D-beat bands. On these eleven tracks in under 25 minutes, we encounter ANTIGEN and SOCIAL STYRELSEN. ANTIGEN offers four tracks led by a crust-cut female voice pitching high choruses, filled with desperate feeling along with a painful screaming. Solid crust punk with hardcore drums, pretty much all straightforward. SOCIALSTYRELSEN blasts crunchy D-beat crust punk with demonic high vocals, guitars like non-stop chainsaws, and ranting drums. A chaos sound from another era with modern nods. The Swedish language hits hard, with such suffering-infused voices fueled by violence. Suggested tracks: “Knivad” and “Hata Mig.”

Pus Pus II LP

A dark Peruvian chamber under a tomb is where we descend with this LP. Raw, distorted, fast-paced, dark blackened hardcore punk that will drive you mad. You can tell they are looking toward chaos and blackened deathrock and punk. A hellish voice echoing from an abyss, chanting deep, desperate screams in a gloomy hardcore atmosphere. Heavily recommend seeing the band live, tearing everything apart. Savage, dark realms from the grave from one of the Latin American bands that has managed to synthesize their own true sound of deathrock and blackened punk. Suggested tracks: “Fosa Común,” “Danza Sombría,” and “Noche.” One of my current projects (EMBOSCADA) did a split with these crazy people, and we are now cursed. A modern must-listen for MOROI and NOSFERATU followers, and seekers of darker sounds in hardcore punk.

Prison Affair Demo III EP

Barcelona’s egg-punk referents PRISON AFFAIR released this four-track EP (their killer third demo) on Under the Gun Records from East L.A. in September 2022—deep, psychotic bass lines plus the most heavily dubbed synth mayhem. On the first track “Big Bottom Baby,” you get the feeling of descending into the prison of an internet tube. Addictive eggy, thrashy synth trances are here, with steady, monotonous vocals jumping through the fast-paced melodies, achieving complexity and implying layers in their sound as they mix theme songs with crazy catchy tracks. This gives them the title of the current kings of the eggy situation. Suggested tracks: “Big Bottom Baby” and “Nice Guys.”

V/A Big, Big Wave LP

Wild and very ambitious project that tries to give the listener a good glimpse into Hattiesburg, Mississippi’s underground punk scene, attempting to document as much of the scene as possible in a single day while on tour (with great success, in my opinion). Biff Bifaro, you are a crazy visionary! Keep on driving to far-away and under the radar scenes! Eleven bands with one or two tracks each recorded on the very same day, no doubt sharing some common ball of sound—to my taste, most of the bands were more on the garage side of rock than the punk side, minus FUMES, JUDY AND THE JERKS and YEAR OF THE VULTURE, but that’s only my view. Also features PLEATHER, CONTROL ROOM, and BIG HITS, among others. Great effort, give it a listen.

Mordloch Mordloch LP

Stench death metal from Velký Osek, Czech Republic, achieving infernal inferno guitars and sludge cadences with notable grindcore nods, and a sick, steady, deadly voice that gives ritualistic feels that sometimes double to deliver possessed, high-pitched screams filled with pain. Devilish death metal nature. Recommended tracks: “Vse Zive” and “Dorakví” for a slow, steady walk to the tomb, taking up speed for some parts in order to run from the demons. Get ready to mosh with skeletons.

Fractured / Phane Phane vs. Fractured split LP

This split presents a battle between Canadian bands. Vancouver’s PHANE delivers six tracks of their own charged hardcore punk inspired and fueled by GBH and the like—punk militia drums, thrashy guitars with tasty riffs, and fast soloing. A deep, ranting voice leads with resemblances of UK82-style anthemic performance, but adding modern nods in the guttural delivery. A good discovery; well-executed, fast punk rock. Suggested tracks: “Musorá” and “No Need to Breathe” for classic street punk rhythm and solid bass lines. FRACTURED, a trio from Montreal, brings five tracks displaying a D-beat/UK82-infused sound heavily influenced by crusty hardcore punk. Good riffing fast guitars and thrashy ’80s metal female vocals mixed with classic hardcore punk drum cadences, reminding me in some songs of Canibalina’s screams in her band ABYECTA. Suggested track: “Full Speed Ahead.” PHANE would win this pairing.

Rabbit Halo of Flies cassette

This interesting cassette comes straight out of Brooklyn, New York. RABBIT provides the finest metalpunk merged with classic hardcore, delivered with blunt force. Deep bass, great solid drums casting breakdowns from hell, smashing guitars, and a reverberating chaotic voice that takes over all the space (and your ears, too) from time to time, producing the feeling of melting down in a violent pit full of raw energy. You can sense some GULCH vibrations and a setting of unease. Highly recommended for those in dire need of a blunt dose of metalpunk and heavy breakdowns. Great art cover featuring a nice putrid egg. Definitely a band to check out live; surely their gigs exude energy and chaos. Suggested tracks: “Malparido,” “Withdrawal from Mass Grave,” and “Worse,” if you fancy some demonic possessed vocals.

Gasmiasma At War With Punk cassette

A six-track 2022 cassette originally recorded in 2015 by New Orleans, Louisiana’s GASMIASMA, featuring members of EYEHATEGOD and CROWBAR. High-velocity powerviolence mixed with crust that seems to never stop, with several hardcore punk nods, great ranting vocals (desperate screaming choruses are included), and thrashy guitars with crazy whips. A ball of sound can be found in almost each song, giving us that uneasy feeling that some crave. Suggested tracks: “Skin the Corpse of Action” and “The Name is Clash, Not Crass,” in order to lose your mind in the pit.

Los Tarzanillos Todo Lo Que Quieras + Lo Mejor De Lo Peor cassette

One-man DIY project from Barcelona, Spain released by the Valencian label Flexidiscos, featuring two separate releases combined on an eighteen-track cassette. Bedroom synth punk with songs heavily influenced by political stances, and an anti-music position that erupted from a boring life mainly because of the pandemic (according to the artist statement of David Garcerán, ex/current member of ALGARA and IRREAL). It’s filled with anarcho-punk affirmations and in some ways takes on forms of guerrilla warfare, like the recorded statement of ethos and principles in the middle of this release, for example. Reverbed monotone vocals, with electric drums and garage-y strings following. If you dig synth punk and things of an eggy nature, you may find this interesting. I personally enjoyed the first half better, and the synthesized statement in the middle that invites the listener to a sense of guerrilla audio. Suggested track: “Hartos.”

Alteri / Gr​ä​nslandet split LP

Issued in October 2022 by Phobia Records, a label based in the Czech Republic, this split presents bands from Germany and Sweden. ALTERI from Cologne, Germany offers a synthesis of blackened crust closer to death metal, with deep and low but also high gutturals, sludgy bass lines, and guitars that sometimes resemble math rock sounds, cutting with precision. The songs are filled with tempo changes and parts achieving complexity. Suggested track: “Verlorene Staedte.” On the Sweden side, we have GRÄNSLANDET from Kristinehamn, delivering their D-beat with deep, sludgy strings and fast cadences, good riffy guitar solos, and controlled yet strong screams plus great drums. Good work with the doom feel that gives a trance-like feeling at moments. Suggested track: “Historiens Mantra.” Appropriate selection for a split, with the bands having things in common. Recommended for blackened crust and metal enthusiasts.

Kritická Situace St​á​le Na Út​ě​ku LP

A key piece of Prague’s punk history, filled with melancholy and angst, screaming for freedom and against mandatory military service and state oppression. This sixteen-track LP includes KRITICKÁ SITUACE’s second demo, originally released in 1989, and represents a great musical archeology effort to bring back a classic cult Czech band by mastering and releasing such an album. Raw punk and some primitive D-beat and crust, and even some proto-hardcore nods (which Czechs like to call “motörpunk”), delivering an example of primitive classic Eastern European sounds. Low quality on the instruments and recording gear, but that doesn’t really matter here. Time-resistant material filled with diminutive distorted guitars, ranting drums, and some good anti-war riffing with nods to militia-related cadences, but taking them as a method of resistance to establish their own war. This second demo from KRITICKÁ SITUACE offers some context regarding the almost-achieved early ’90s abolition of compulsory military service. “Still on the run from the limitations of our own fellow citizens. Still on the run from the madness of war.” Anti-militarism, pacifism, criticism of one’s own ranks. Pure raw punk energy catalyzed in vagueness, inexperience, limited skills, and greatly limited options for own equipment. Hate militarism? This might be an inspiring album for a revolt.

Outrage Factor Nothing Ever Changes cassette

Another great addition for Tetryon Tapes, this time from a member of their own local scene in Buffalo, New York. Released by Biff Bifaro’s one-man DIY operation DIY project in July, this consists of nine tracks with a sound that resembles classic ’80s US (especially West Coast) hardcore like POISON IDEA, GERMS, old BLACK FLAG, or CIRCLE JERKS, greeting us with an amazing rage and angst, visceral desperate and violent vocals that evoke puking on someone’s face, classic hardcore guitars and blasting drums, and even some surfy new wave riffs. This seems to have erupted from a long-sealed time vault or capsule, and I think that’s great—classic and yet quite refreshing. Excellent effort by the one songwriter in recording, mixing, mastering and even doing the artwork themselves! Suggested tracks: “Cyanide Solution,” “Contaminated,” and “Violent and Jacked” for nice palm-muting (“Violent and jacked / Under attack / The past is gone / And now you are looking back!”). Great cathartic cassette, give it a go!

Acid Mikvah Acid Mikvah demo cassette

Directly from Chicago, Illinois comes ACID MIKVAH, a group of Jewish punks who released this cassette in June 2021 (extra credit for the lyrics on their Bandcamp page). Reverbed vocals over political, garage-y, fast punk rock, with quite catchy riffs led by a heavily distorted guitar that has resemblances of early raw punk mixed with classic hardcore. With songs that speak against apartheid and religious birthrights and take a stand against nationalism and hatred, they create freedom punk to fight against Israel’s war and sieges against Palestine (“Call everyone an antisemite, the establishment got your back / But we fight back, with Palestinians, for a just world”). Interesting political punk, you may like them.

The Clue The Clue demo cassette

Five-track demo in seven minutes by Denver’s the CLUE. Egg-punk with heavily distorted vocals that are almost unintelligible. Electronic gags and some guitar riffs are interesting. Great synths and overexposed noisy drums. The non-stop confusing lyrics may be annoying if you are not familiar with this subgenre. The cover of “Sunlight” by TINY TIM at the end of this demo is bananas. If you like frantic, rotten egg-punk, this might be right up your alley.

Derrumbando Defensas Sistema Criminal LP

All-female metal/hardcore band from Temuco, Chile that assembled around 2009, with three previous releases. Released in April 2022, this seven-track LP (with a great cover art by Subhuman Illustrations from Colombia) has some sick lyrics full of hatred and aggression and a sense of revenge and justice, touching on topics such as feminist struggles and resistance, and Latin American issues from colonialism to ethnocide to nature’s destruction at the hands of big foreign companies. Anti-system, anti-state, anti-speciesism, anti-fascism, and anti-nationalism positions (what else could you dream for on an LP?) combine beautifully with distorted metal strings and deep and suffering vocals with some sweet gutturals. Metallic hardcore cadences are included along with sounds suggesting outer space and mental metal chambers alike. Suggested tracks: “Latinoamérica” has some great lyrics summarizing all of the problems of this area that has been injured for too long, transmitting a helpful yet painful message which any Latin American is going to identify with. “Devastación” is a sludgy metal hardcore instrumental with screams and doomsday space sounds, working as a break between songs with lyrics. “No Me Representas” is a great anti-nationalist anthem against the Chilean state and its repression and corruption. Highly recommended project, it’s been a good surprise.

Keretik Tomorrow’s Worst Enemy cassette

This eight-track cassette is filled with twenty-three minutes of gloomy metalpunk from Helsinki, Finland. Heavy metal-infused punk with sludgy cadences and deep smoky vibes—the vocals are anger-filled and sickly crazy, the guitar riffage is mental, and the bass lines resemble a consistent hammer. All of these aspects combine efficiently to create a vibe of their own, a great effort that achieves a unique sound for the band. ”Vannoharha” and “Pirulukee Pyhää Kirjaa” are my suggested tracks, the first one for its crazy drums and “predator hunt experience” sound, and for the sick bass lines in the latter. Helsinki’s metalpunk is alive and well.

JFA / Sin 34 split EP reissue

This reissued relic is quite amazing. Both bands’ tracks are taken from the Sudden Death compilation EP from 1982 released on Smoke Seven Records featuring bands like MORAL DECAY, CRANKSHAFT, the SINS, REDD KROSS, DEATH YOUTH, and more—according to the timeline, these may be JFA and SIN 34’s earliest and/or first recordings. Surf punks from Arizona mixed with hardcore punks from Santa Monica, this split is still vital today, filled with urgent youth screams for politics, chaos, and fun. For JFA’s part, we can talk about revolutionary guitars, fast-paced screams, an erratic voice, and low reverb with surf punk influences and new wave punk. SIN 34 delivers good sludgy cadences, anthemic and energetic female vocals, and decadence-evoking palm-muted guitars. A merge between new wave punks introducing space sounds with a resemblance to surf rock and the most classic US hardcore punk, with referents worldwide during the ’81–84 era. A must-listen for lovers of skate punk and classic US hardcore.

O.R.C. Feeling Safe cassette

This five-track cassette was released by Dial Club from Japan (Katakatou Punk Collective) and consists of lo-fi Melbourne punk directly from a bedroom. Imagine vocals like an ’80s telephone conversation on a submarine, mixed with heavily-layered tasty riffs. This is eggy garage punk, and it could get monotonous—for fans of PRISON AFFAIR, as the heavy synths are companions with the diminutive, distorted guitars. Recommended if you are into lo-fi bedroom creatures and frantically recorded cassette tapes. Suggested tracks: “Self-Proclaimed Narcissist” and “Too Much Fun.”

Chaotic Youth Demo 81 LP

Punk relic from the UK82 wave reissued by Nausea Records (UK), featuring Scotland’s CHAOTIC YOUTH’s demo from 1981. Teenage aggression and rotten presentation of Margaret Thatcher’s era. Really good bass lines, and the singer’s voice has a classic UK82 style, ranting and screaming for change and angst. Favorite track: “Violence in the City.” You can feel the teenage vibes, and if you played in a punk band as a youngster, you are gonna feel at home. Great effort with the archiving and mastering of the material on behalf of Nausea Records.

Lamictal Violent Convulsions cassette

Minimal weird garage punk rock from California that reminds me of a merge between DANNY’S FAVORITES and PRISON AFFAIR, but with hardcore cadences and speed. According to the Bandcamp page of the label Goodbye Boozy, we have little information about the one-man band that is Alex Coletto (X-ACTO, GNARLES MANSON). Four tracks in less than four minutes is my kind of synth punk (or should I say synth-hardcore?). Limited to twenty tapes, it’s a must-listen for enthusiasts of synth punk/egg-punk/totally weird minimal punk and its derivatives. Suggested tracks: “Violent Convulsions” (its title exactly depicts the song) and “Aura.. When you are starting to enjoy it, it abruptly ends, like all good things in life.

Dadar Iron Cage LP

Well-executed lo-fi egg-punk directly from Parma, Italy. DADAR’s fourth album sounds really balanced, with the right amount of loop effects and synth lines that follow the rhythm of the song, and manages to deliver a really good sound. Also, the vocals are a lil’ bit dubbed,  accomplishing that garage feeling egg-punk should evoke. Suggested tracks: “Rewiring,” “Sound of Sirens,” and the last track of this album, “112.” Reminds me of WWW, cyberpunk friends from Argentina. If you like synth sounds and eggy garage punk, this is an excellent album for you. If you wish to hear emerging bands from other countries that aren’t the US or UK playing fine egg-punk, this is your choice for a starting place (at least in Europe).

The Poisoning Human Apparitions EP

This band comes from Santa Ana/Los Angeles, California, and this seems to be their first EP—physical copies are only available at live shows. A four-track EP spinning around for twelve minutes or so. Kinda fast punk rock, notes of GG ALLIN in the vocals, quick guitar changes, and good drums with fills and stops that may cause pogoing. The first track “Human Apparitions” is like some kind of hymn and works as an intro to the EP (riffy as hell). Good hardcore punk, with really defined guitars and a lil’ bit less distorted than usual. The second song “Breathless” was to me the best song on this EP: well-executed, and creates an atmosphere of losing oxygen, with great guitars for this one as well as good drum cuts. I wouldn’t categorize them into the “metal punk” area at all, as they are closer to classic hardcore punk, even a clean-ish version. Their singer transmits a calm but uneasy feeling, like a hawk looking from above, calm but deadly. Initially, I wasn’t sure if I liked them, but after some listening, I realized this is quite good. It’s always easier to just make noise and angry postures, but this has musical accuracy, and it seems to have passion, too.

The Executed Demonstration cassette

Phoenix, Arizona’s the EXECUTED has released this demo on Noise Merchant Records from the UK, a key label to discover a wide range of emerging hardcore bands worldwide. Four tracks in less than seven minutes gives us the perfect intro for the EXECUTED. Sharp guitars, even sharper voice, good riffing and beat changes. Listen to the track “Blinders” for speedy pogo and riff rage, continue with “Grid Decay” for a catchy guitar jumping along with the drums followed by a downbeat that goes in crescendo to the pit, then “Shock State” follows quite in the same line as “Blinders,” and finish the album with “The Last Riot” to extinguish whatever was left of hatred and violence in you before the EXECUTED. Really fun album, hardcore punk mixed with nods to and cadences of ’80s skate rock and classic hardcore like the downbeats—for me it’s a formula that works, but that you don’t get to hear as often as you’d think. Highly recommended.

Uncross Demo 2022 CD

Coming straight out of Salt Lake City, Utah’s UNCROSS offers three tracks in ten minutes on this demo, which was released in April 2022. Extra points for having the lyrics on the page,  starting off with “Descend Into Decrepitude” (“Lies cannot save you / Hate will not heal you / God cannot hear you…”). With distorted strings and sludgy cadences, the first minute-and-a-half of this song sorts of works as an intro to the demo. After that, the vocals enter, with remembrances of crust metal and doom. It totally makes you feel like descending, and after that starts picking a rhythm inviting you to a doomy pit. Very cathartic. For the second song “Amplified Self-Loathing,” the strings are mental and ill, and follows the lyrical work: depression is a constant, as is self-loathing and hatred scattered towards humanity. This track is a little bit less accomplished, but it has some dark introspective force going to your own soul. The last track is “DYI” (“Doing Yourself In”). This reviewer does not condone nor encourage suicide, but this band might as well. My personal favorite track is “Descend Into Decrepitude,” as it gets the desired atmosphere and may convince you to enter into a rhythmic trance. For lovers of sludge and doom, and reaching the core of depression; a great first effort for UNCROSS.