Мир Mindecision LP
This unsung classic of ’80s USHC has me absolutely floored. Roanoke, Virginia’s Мир (pronounced “mihr”) are the archetypical small-town punk band that made a singular, killer recording that was nearly lost to the sands of time. The story essentially writes itself. Mindecision was recorded in 1984 by four high-schoolers from the middle of nowhere. Dredging up the forgotten gems can be a dicey affair, though. Often enough, the context is more compelling than the content—but not in this case! Мир is absolutely savage. The level of craftsmanship in the songwriting, coupled with impressive technical chops in the rhythm section, really sets this apart. The guitar tone is lush and colored just enough to make it sound unique. There are surf elements to the riffs that gesture toward some West Coast influences. I think of Мир as occupying a space that is the midpoint between BATTALION OF SAINTS and ARTICLES OF FAITH. They fit right into the regional context, with bands like the LANDLORDS from Charlottesville, and Richmond’s WHITE CROSS. Мир shared a bill with CORROSION OF CONFORMITY a number of times, as well. Add in what was happening at the time a few hours north in DC, and it makes sense that Мир would emerge from the cultural void of Southwest Virginia. Full disclosure, I live in Roanoke, and seeing this release get a proper treatment, including a fold-out insert with tons of photos and fliers, resonates in a significant way for me and takes me back to a time in the mid ’90s when as a teenager, I’d hear about bands like Мир from the older punks that were still kicking around. But trust me, this far exceeds the nostalgia-inducement factor. Beach Impediment has truly done us all a great service with this release. Any fan of ripping USHC will want to pick this up. Unquestionably one of the top releases of 2023.