Reviews

Byllepest Distro

Crudez Jungle Jeopardy EP

CRUDEZ looks and plays punk like you imagine the enemies of Robo Cop would prefer. Nasty, Riot City Records soundmark sonic jet guitars, as a pipe of fuzz, laid on a solid but simplified beat. Although the combination between the music and vocals reminds me a lot of classic Swiss bands: the KICK, GLUEAMS sort of distant emotions as the singer exists in her own world, far from the language she sings on, far from the dirty, jiggly guitar sound an inbred mix of MANISCH DEPRESIV and CHAOTIC DISCHORD. It blends great with the additional variety of pogo melody and street blitzkrieg-vibes. The songs do not differ from each other, therefore nine of them in a row is a bit stifling although each song could be 7″ material. Let them be your daily dose of international punk!

Impulso Costante Ossessione EP

Second 7″ from Trento’s IMPULSO falls on the listener as an unstoppable bomb that has your name written on it. Sounds clean as most of the modern hardcore records but it also makes the writing ability of the band transparent. Most of the linear riffs are balanced with interesting switches on the rhythm formula; even the mid-tempo songs are full-speed-ahead-paced but held back on a chain that is about to break. There is a great use of the two guitars and a bouncy groove roams between each part. As if I were standing under a waterfall—this is how packed the devastating flood of these songs hits. The only thing I cannot do is to throw around classic Italian hardcore bands as comparison points. Unlike other current acts who exist from the predecessor’s influences, IMPULSO rather understood what made that scene great and they brought back the idea to be inventive and fuck all rules.

Membrane Life Sum EP

Piercing my eardrums apart, MEMBRANE out of Oakland drives a stake through my head with a death march of echoing, sizzling noisecore. Imagine the SCREAMERS, GAI, RUDIMENTARY PENI and the SEXUAL all teamed up in a prison yard, needing to escape. With a sonic arsenal and pipes like this, they easily would. This is wild, dream-like hardcore, mixing it up in a bowl of raw noise punk, seasoned with unique cosmic shredding zest. There is something really alien about this, while being familiar. It’s not hostile, but it definitely wants out, and I am not gonna be the one standing in its way. I feel full, and I’m hungry for more. Life Sum is destined to sell out; good luck getting your hands on a copy.

Negativ Epicrisis

Epicrisis is a good punk record. It’s nasty, savage, noisey, short and intense. Contains insanity, angst and power. They operate with back-and-forth dragged riffs and tupa-tupa rhythms that never really turn into chaos, but flicks with intensity. Their sound is perfect for a guessing game regarding their influences, as it is rather a conclusion of a well-curated personal collection than exact references lifted into their songs. Somehow they remind me of DAWN OF HUMANS from recent times, but without the visceral art edge. Yet they fall for the same uniforming trap so many contemporary records do. While it is done by all the right people, talent shines through it, and yes it is a great piece of work, but it tells more about the current state of international hardcore punk than their own enviorment. The lyrics are about personal fears, a society that is constantly surveilled, but who cares anyway, because they are here to consume, live in cells called as homes and exist to work what serves their slave-holders. Then we have the music which is while being great—it truly is—does it dare to be not perfect? It screams fuck you, but does it mean that as well? It is unfair to pour on NEGATIV a problem of an era. My direct message is: Epicrisis would be way better if it sounded different from a great amount of current records. To be fair, I like this record because, at a deeper layer, among the psycho tension, it sneaks in creepy melodies as if Rikk Agnew and Nick Blinko were trying to write a ballad. NEGATIV has a natural impetus, being constantly present in each of their songs. The tempo sounds as it could be faster which creates expectations for the chaos to burst out, while it never happens and chaos is created in the listener. Well placed, sudden changes in pace and riffs create uncertainty that lends excitement to the music. The vocals confused, bile splattering, phlegmatic style mixes perfectly with the sharp, dystopian-vibe of the music. Most likely if you do not listen to this record for hours straight, you will just think: it is ugly and destructive; how sick punk records are.

Purple-X Pre-Tense EP

PURPLE-X delivers a unique brand of hardcore, swaying between manic and melodic with traces of deathrock influence on their debut EP. The singer stands out with snotty vocals that are just the right amount belligerent (due in part I’m sure to her Oslo accent delivering English lyrics), and the band displays the breadth of their capabilities over the course of these four surly songs. Dark, divergent sounds from Norway’s capital.

Cankro / Vidro Split LP

Oh, a split made for VIDRO’s Brazilian tour, originally released on tape and now put out by Byllepest on vinyl. This explains a lot, while both bands are among the better up-and-coming groups, VIDRO dominates the record. Already appreciated their previous full-length, now they are even better, playing fucked-up, mid-tempo hardcore somewhere between modern, riff-based groups and SSD/DYS stomping parts, while if you fell for daydreaming seconds, you can find yourself humming “Now I wanna be your dog” to their music, too. Their singer has a great, super pissed off voice; it pairs well with the guitars that dare to experiment beyond a few chords’ chunky riffs. While their side is as effective on moving my body as if someone shook me by my shoulders, I do not feel hypnotized into fist-pumping, but I nod my head owning total consciousness over my limbs. VIDRO deserves it. Luckily for CANKRO, the Byllepest version equaled out the production differences, thus the quality upgrade definitely elevated CANKRO’s side. Feels bizarre to use the word “promising” in a culture that glorifies immature groups, and their badly played rehearsal session demos, still I feel CANKRO is set for something more fucked up and crazy than what they present here. It’s already uptempo hardcore that recalls some of their countries predecessors, but I’m not reconciled with their rock-ish solos. It’s the worst I can tell about them, not as if I wish to, but again they flash a lot of potential to future killer records, already within these four songs. Kudos for Byllepest Distro for putting this tape on the coolest format.

X2000 Pensionär EP

X2000 awakes heavy BETONG HYSTERIA vibes on their first 7″, blending spooky and headstrong chorus-drenched riffs with determined minimalist punk beats. It’s either how the record or the band sounds, but the repressed energy and craziness under a sealed surface reminds me of RUDIMENTARY PENI. X2000 guitars are not minimalist repetition but wired through the whole music as a snake traps its prey, almost Paganicons-ish, yet X2000 is a hardcore band that channels a lot of anarcho-punk sounds and sinking world feelings into their sound. Their singer has a great desperate voice, one that sounds like he filters the world through some of the previously mentioned band’s booklets. The world is rotting and X2000 documents it genuinely. The band is from Göteborg singing in Spanish. What else do you want to know? Consume it you idiot!