Alexis is the one man behind STRAIGHT & ALERT, also doing vocals for Harm Done and Raw Justice (R.I.P). He has been involved into Hardcore Punk for 15 years, running Straight & Alert, playing in bands, booking shows or doing a fanzine. Based in Nantes, France.
Disclaimer : don’t try this if you are not into death blast beats and grind riffs. Nauru are from Veszprém, Hungary and they bring 8 tracks of political punk / metal / grind / powerviolence with influences going from Siege to Infest and Napalm Death or Dead Kennedys.
New band based out of England, CRUELTY recently put online this 3 track demo. It’s digital only, sorry walkman users. Get into it if you are into vicious 90’s influenced metal hardcore. They name Choekhold, All Out War or Obituary as influences but you can definitely find a lot more of nasty 90’s hardcore stuff in this.
Plenty of new cool records this week with the official release of the BURN LP (3 colors available), TURNOVER new full length, a repress of SHIPWRECKED LP available on Gold or Blue, BREAK AWAY LP, SELF DEFENSE FAMILY 12″, AGNOSTIC FRONT Live LP limited to 444 copies and eventually the debut 7″ by RAGE that I’m putting out in Europe (Australian version on RESIST records).
Along with loads of restock.
Burn – Do Or Die [LP]
“Do or Die” is the highly anticipated new album from Burn. The album was engineered by Kurt Ballou (Converge) at God City Studios and mastered by Howie Weinberg (Slayer, Public Enemy, Sonic Youth). As a whole this 10 song album is a melding of infectious melody, hook laden groove, and raw hardcore emotion. An invigorating modernization and continuation down the path these visionaries forged alone two decades earlier.
Available on Cream / Black Mix (Indie Exclusive) LTD 1000 (1st press), Light Yellow / Oxblood LTD 500 (2nd press) or Black (1st press)
Front man Austin Getz doesn’t blink when asked to sum up Turnover’s third full-length, Good Nature. “Learning,” he replies. “This whole record is about learning. Opening your eyes to new things, going out- side of your comfort zone, and learning to grow into something new.” The album’s unique blend of musical and spiritual growth is immediately audible on the opening track, “Super Natural,” a late-summer idyll of intertwined guitar parts and laidback vocals. Listening to how the leisurely “Nightlight Girl” melts into a more propulsive selection like “Breeze,” and the way Good Nature flows together as a seamless whole, it’s also evident that the foursome has been paying closer attention to how artists from earlier eras made full-length albums: the range of textures, tempos, and dynamics on Good Nature are infuenced in part by bossa nova, cool jazz, electronic music, and psychedelic grooves.
“Lifting weights to early Taang – X-Claim the north with our northeast sound. Hard Rock on steroids, we injected rage, High Voltage Hardcore – A Powerage.” These words are taken from “Fast Violent Noise”, the opening track on the new Shipwrecked album entitled “The Last Pagans” – their only and last full-length recording. The quote says a lot about this record, the motives behind Shipwrecked, and its aging horde. The LP – 21 songs in total – is a relentless assault on the eardrums from start to finish. Take-no-prisoners hardcore forged in the fires of old Boston, early England and heavy metal sounds that will leave you thirsting for more. “Fast violence, baby, forever wrecked.”
Richmond hardcore torchbearers BREAK AWAY are back with their sophomore LP, Cross My Heart, available now from REACT! Records. In a scene dominated by seasonal acts and disposable demos, where releasing even one full length is a noteworthy achievement, Break Away have established themselves as a focused, prolific and stalwart band dead set on leaving a lasting impact. On Cross My Heart, Break Away delivers exactly what you’d hope from a true straight edge hardcore band– power, speed, and passion. Vocalist Ace Stallings explores the enduring duality of hardcore, the balance of aggression and introspection, asking “was I made for war, or made to create?” If Cross My Heart is any indication, the answer is both.
In December 2014, Self Defense left a show in Glasgow, drove overnight to the BBC studio in Maida Vale, and loaded in. The band recorded four songs in the style they were performed on that tour, rather different from their album versions. Slower, faster, longer, shorter, less busy, more intricate, the songs all take a step away from their origins and land someplace arguably more exciting. In the intervening years, this session became a holy grail of sorts for Self Defense fans, with low-quality rips being offered on fileshare networks. Deathwish Inc is proud to finally give it a vinyl release.
34 tracks by 24 bands from all over the world: Dogends (USA), Times Together (UK), Injustice System (USA), Crucial Section (Japan), Commitment Crew (Sweden), Zero Progress (USA), Reproach (Belgium), Sex Drive (Netherlands), Right Idea (USA), Snob Value (Germany), Echoes (Netherlands), Isolation (Germany), Seein’ Red (Netherlands), Salad Days (Germany), Clocked Out (Scotland), Burial (Germany), Night Prowler (Canada), Evolve (Norway), Eye-Gouge (Australia), Sniffing Glue (Germany), Become (USA), Citizens Patrol (Netherlands), Skaggs (Germany), Vitamin X (Netherlands). Comes with a huge 12-page booklet!
With the release of “Feel The Burn”, Rage aim to deliver 5 cuts of slamming hardcore punk, influenced by American hardcore greats, British punks and Australia’s hardest bands. Initial production of the record was handled by Blake Ohlback (Choke, Homesick) and the record was then mixed by Chris Corry (No Tolerance, The Rival Mob) before being mastered by Dan Randall (86 Mentality, The Flex).
Available on Preorder cover / Red wax LTD 100, Regular cover / Black wax LTD 100 or Regular cover / Black wax LTD 500
108 – Threefold Misery
Angel Dust – A.D
Angel Dust – Rock The Fuck On Forever
Bitter End – Illusions Of Dominance
Break Away – Face Aggression
Breakdown – Runnin’ Scared
Circle Jerks – Gig
Converge – All We Love We Leave Behind[2ble LP]
Deafheaven – Roads To Judah
Eternal Sleep – The Emptiness Of
Eyeball – More Days To Come
Get The Most – ST
God’s Hate – Mass Murder
Incendiary – Cost Of Living
Insurance Risk – Violence In Our Minds
Integrity – The Blackest Curse
Mainstrike – No Passing Phase
Mainstrike – A Quest For The Answers
Mindset – Leave No Doubt
The Beautiful Ones – Jaded Love
Think Twice – Unrealized
True Love – New Young Gods
Violent Reaction – City Street [US PRESS]
All Pigs Must Die – Curse Of Humanity b/w Extinction Is Ours
Arms Race – Gotta Get Out [US PRESS]
Cold World / War Hungry – Split
Insurance Risk – How Much More
Mindset – Nothing Less
Sportswear – It Runs Deep
True Blue – The Ice
True Colors – Consider It Done
Insist – Demo
Turnover – Good Nature
Voice Of A Generation + Sportswear – Issue 2 + demo [Fanzine + 7″]
Some self promotion never hurts. So here is RAGE debut EP I’m putting out. RAGE was started with the intention to play UK influenced hardcore like Violent Reaction or The Flex, so you can definitely find that UKHC vibe, mixed with Boston Hardcore (The Rival Mob / No Tolerance) and mid 80’s NYHC (Outburst). 5 track 7″ banger!
A bit different from what I’m usually posting here but here is Fatalist, a 5 piece Modern Hardcore band from Australia. The main influences come from a wide array of places: Carpathian, Rise and Fall, AFI, Blacklisted and The Smiths would be the best way to describe what they are going for.
Last week it was RAGE from Australia, this week another band joins S&A crew : BITTER YOUTH from Liverpool. After a sick 3 track tape released on GRIM REALITYrecords for their summer tour with Primitive Life, they are about to drop a new 7″ called A NEW LIGHT on S&A records, and belive me it’s really good.
New breed UK Hardcore from Liverpool. They defined a change of step with their sound. The refined elements of classic and modern hardcore, with the positive ethic of youth crew bands like True Colors or Mindset, introspectiveness and emotional edge of bands like Turning Point, and bruising yet melodic riffs make it clear, the youth is bitter but striving for unity and progress.
A preview track of A NEW LIGHT will be available soon along with preorders. But until then, make yourself a favor and check their tape out.
BITTER YOUTH are on Facebook and Instagram. Make sure to hit the like / follow button so you’ll know what’s up!
Fresh from Phoenix, Arizona, this new 5 track demo by FREEDOM OF CHOICE will please all the youth crew-ish / Lockin’ Out style fans. I couldn’t find any information about them so just download the demo and enjoy these jams. Bust!
Bludgeoning Old School Brutal Death Metal from down under. 4 track in 15 minutes of punishing old school death metal with some DEATH influenced riffs, OBITUARY-ish breakdowns and some furious blast beats. I used not to be a fan of this kind of really growl vocals and they always remind me Jim Carrey pretending to be Barney from Napalm Death, but here they fit perfectly.
I missed their 2016 demo but I’ve seen this one everywhere online a few days ago. Florida hardcore in full force. It’s not even the end of the first song and I already want to rip someone’s head off. I think SANDMAN features members of ECOSTRIKE but I might be wrong. Anyway, if you are into the whole 90’s metallic hardcore / H8000 thing, be sure to check this record out!
BOOTLICKER already had a demo out yearlier this year but it’s with this new 6 track E.P I discovered them. 6 tunes of 80’s US/UK hardcore punk with an oi! vibe and a very oversaturated production / sound. I don’t know if this sound result was what they aimed at but I like it. It reminds me the URBAN BLIGHT – Total War EP which is a good thing. The song DEJECTION is a real banger!
COMPLETE LOSS from Germany (Dülmen & Dortmund) plays Oi! / punk / Streepunk and just delivered a pretty sweet 5 track demo that will be put on a tape soon. 5 punk oi! anthems that will make you raise your glass and wear suspenders.
CASTIGO (which means “punishment” in spanish) is a new band from Madrid playing furious boston / youth crew influenced hardcore with lyrics in spanish. Make sure to check out their 4 track demo tape if you are into stuff like No Tolerance, Floorpunch or Confront. Tapes out soon!
I’m glad to announce RAGE from Australia are joining S&A and I’ll release their debut 7″ called FEEL THE BURN. The story behind this release is pretty simple. Jarrod emailed me to promote their record and maybe get a review on the blog, but I liked it so much I offered them to do a European press, and here we are.
Even more stoked to be part of this release knowing the Australian version is out on one of the best / biggest australian hardcore labels RESIST records, who put out records for notorious bands such as 50 Lions, Miles Away, Internal Affairs, Carpathian or even Parkway Drive.
RAGE was started with the intention to play UK influenced hardcore like Violent Reaction or The Flex, so you can definitely find that UKHC vibe, mixed with Boston Hardcore (The Rival Mob / No Tolerance) and mid 80’s NYHC (Outburst).
Since the Australian press will be out early September, we’ve already started preorders so you can scoop a copy now if you don’t live on the other side of the globe! You can already stream 2 songs of the record on bandcamp.
There will be 3 versions for the European press of that 7″ and also a T-shirt. PREORDER them here. Preorder cover / Red wax – 100 copies Preorder cover / Red wax – 100 copies Regular cover / Black wax – 300 copies Test Presses – 15 copies
I’ve started to work with Pat since the very beginning of STRAIGHT & ALERT. One of my first wholesale orders was a CARRY THE WEIGHT one with records of NEVER AGAIN, COLD SNAP and WAYFARER, back in 2009. He has always been super nice and easy to work with. A while after this very first order I found out he was also playing I many other bands I liked and was another figure of the UK hardcore scene. That’s the reason he is featuring in this first issue.
[This interview featured in the first issue of the printed fanzine STRAIGHT & ALERT #1 but for those who didn’t scoop a copy I decided to post it all again here]
Let’s start this the classic way. Please introduce yourself, how old are you where do you live etc…
I’m Pat, I am 26 in a week or so, and I live in Kent, which is in the south of England.
How long have you been involved in Hardcore and music in general, and how did you get into it?
I have been involved in hardcore for just over ten years. I was always into heavy music as I had a brother 7 years my senior who loved metal. He bought records/got VHS videos from Roadrunner Records that had bands like Biohazard and the Misfits on. I used to love checking them out. I gradually progressed into hardcore and punk and started going to shows in Kent around 2005. A lot has changed since then but I still love being a part of it.
If I am right you are or were playing in FINAL RAGE, INHERIT, NEVER AGAIN, SECTARIAN VIOLENCE, WAYFARER, EGO TRIP, XREPENTANCEX and running CARRY THE WEIGHT records. Is that all? Give us a hint about (some of) these bands.
Yeah that’s most of them. I also currently play in DIGRESS and UNHOLY MAJESTY. I did a couple of demos for a band called FEEDING CHAIN last year but we haven’t done much since. A couple of other projects are in the making too. I love(d) doing all of these bands for different reasons. xRepentancex is probably my ‘main’ project at the moment – it’s a band I have wanted to do for years, so when I found members to make it happen I was stoked.
Is XREPENTANCEX the only active now, maybe SECTARIAN VIOLENCE too? When you had several ones playing at the same time how did you manage to deal with them all? Was your involvement different in each band? If we can talk about a «role», what would be yours in each band?
Of the bands you mentioned xRepx and SxV are the only active ones now. But Digress and Unholy Majesty are also releasing records and playing shows now. It can be quite hard to juggle everything sometimes, especially as my ‘real’ life is getting busier, as well as the label. But I don’t really do anything else socially haha. My role differs in each band. In most of them I am the organizer and song writer (musically). In others I take a backseat. In Inherit for example I just turned up to practice and played what I was told – Rich Shiner (ex- xCanaanx, The Break In) is a great song writer and really knows the genre well. Also in Digress, I wrote the lyrics and chipped in with some riffs on ‘The Seventh Day’, but Dan Rayner (guitar) and Ben Woolf (bass) are incredible song writers, especially for 90’s stuff, and they work well with how creative Oli (drums) is with ideas.
What are your occupations, job and ways to spend your spare time beside your bands if you have some left?
I am in the last year of my PhD in Philosophy at the moment, and I lecture part time at the University of Reading, and for the Worker’s Education Association. After I finish this course I might end up in a different city or country for work, so my immediate future is a little uncertain at the moment, but I hope to work in academia full time. In terms of spare time, everything goes to bands or the label for the most part. Every now and again I get to go hiking.
If you didn’t pick Hardcore, can you guess where / what / who would you be?
I’m not sure I can answer that, but I think I would probably be less than who I am now.
It’s a bit cliche but, what did Hardcore bring you ? Like I know it helped me to define who I am and my values when I was a teenager. Not only being straight edge or vegan, but also the way I consider things and how to do to them. Try to make as much as I can, on my own and not waiting for someone else to do it for me.
You pretty much nailed it. Being involved in the hardcore scene gave/gives me space to really explore that inquisitive aspect of my nature: are the values ‘society’ is giving me actually good for me? Developing your individuality and reinforcing a DIY attitude is what I take from it.
The Love – Hate question: What pisses you off / makes you happy? At the moment or in general.
Complacency and laziness really get to me. But more than that, when people try and cover up those aspects of their personality by whining and crying out for pity. I can’t stand this over-sharing of feelings. The universe owes you nothing, just get on with what you want to do in this TINY amount of time you have. A recent pet-peeve are these cupcake vegans: when cakes and treats become priority number one, and who go out of there way at length to acquire them like they are some elixir of life. Grates on me so hard.
What makes me happy: achievement, seeing my friends doing well, dogs, getting to travel a lot and go hiking, a healthy and vibrant hardcore scene in the UK, creativity, playing shows.
Like I said you run CARRY THE WEIGHT records, one of the most active and best European labels nowadays. Tell us more about it. When and how did it all start? Are you running it alone? What are your plans and goals with it?
Thanks for the kind words! It all started in 2009 when Dead and Gone Records was winding down and there was nothing to fill the void. Me and Tomas (who I co-run the label with) were just starting Never Again and we wanted to release stuff ourselves so we started CTW. The label is busier than ever which is cool, it really reflects the amount of great bands there are out there right now. We have plans to just keep releasing records while we can and to have fun at CTW Fest 6 in October with EARTH CRISIS.
What is the worst experience you had to face with the label?
This is relatively rare, but every now and again I will have to deal with some snotty brat complaining that about how it has been 4 days and they STILL haven’t received their order, like CTW is Amazon.com or some shit. The label is and always has been run out of a bedroom, and when kids think they are owed some premium service it pisses me off. But like I said, that is thankfully not the norm.
Tell us more about SECTARIAN VIOLENCE. This is an international band featuring members from USA, UK and Sweden right? I assume the whole process of a regular band like writing songs, rehearsing, playing gigs had to be redefined. In a nutshell, how do you do to do this band?
That’s right. Andy, Tom and myself are from the UK, Staffan is from Sweden and Nick is in the USA. People always think it must be hard to do but honestly that band probably runs more smoothly than any other I have been in haha. I usually write the songs and then everyone bar Nick will get together one weekend in the UK to polish them and record them. We send them to Nick and he records the vocals. Booking tours is really easy as we have a lot of connections from our previous touring bands. We don’t play very often but it’s always fun when we do. Socially it works really well, tight group of people who are all on the same page. We are currently writing for a new 7’’.
2015 has seen the birth of a crazy good LP by XREPENTANCEX «The Sickness of Eden» and you guys just played the IEPER FEST for the first time. What kind of response did you get from people for the LP and at the fest?
Thanks again! I had never been to Ieper so I had no idea what to expect, and when I saw how the big the stage was and how early in the day we were playing I thought there would be no one there. Thankfully I was wrong. The place was packed and I had a lot of fun playing. People seemed to dig it and I met some awesome people. The response to the LP has been overwhelming. The second press is almost sold out and the record has only been out for 6 months or so. I am really proud of the LP so it’s cool to see other people enjoy it too.
What are you plans with that band?
Like any band, it’s just for fun. We get offered a lot of tours but we can’t really do them due to my, and everyone else’s, work schedule. I only ever really wanted to do an LP so whatever happens now is just having fun with it while it lasts.
You guys seem to stand hard for Veganism & Straight Edge with xRx, even called Hardlines by some. Do you think it still makes sense to preach about these causes nowadays when we are flooded with videos, facebook posts, and all kind of stuff about it? Don’t get me wrong, I’m also standing for these ideas, but maybe a bit tired of some people’s moralistic speeches.
That is a great question. I would say two things. First, I think because of the sheer volume of social media campaigns about animal rights, people can become desensitized to the content. Consequently, it can be good to try and reach people through an alternative means, if that’s your intention. Secondly, while we most certainly stand for Veganism and Straight Edge, I never intended the band to be trying to a ‘make a difference’ or to convert people. It was meant as a constructive expression of aggression at things we despise, and at the same time a homage to 90s bands we all share a love more. Maybe other members would give you a different answer, but I don’t think it’s xRx’s job, or any hc bands job, to give people an overly moralistic lecture. Hardcore is about energy and getting caught in the moment. If I want to learn about something in detail, I will go to the relevant authorities on the matter. If people watch the band, listen to the lyrics and as a result begin to consider their own life choices, that’s cool, but it isn’t in virtue of that that xRx is a band.
NEVER AGAIN was active for a really short period (2009-2010)? How did you manage to put out that many records ( a 7’’, 2 tapes, 2 split 7’’s and a LP) in such a short time?
That was my first proper band so I was super enthusiastic to write, record and tour. Looking back on it I can’t really say anything too positive about the music other than it had a youthful energy – the songs have not aged well in my opinion. But being in that band taught me a lot about touring and about how people can behave.
Why did you break up so fast? I’ve only been able to see you guys in London opening for INTEGRITY and it was wild ! I’ve heard some bad talks about NxA especially after you guys didn’t show up to a show friends of mine were booking in my hometown during the NEVER AGAIN / WAYFARER tour. It’s time to kill the rumors !
That Integ show was so much fun. The band ended about two thirds into the NxA/European tour that you mention. It was years ago so I don’t want to go into every detail (we would be here forever), but the short version is that the singer, Luke, alienated himself more and more from the rest of us the few months leading up to the tour because of differing maturity levels. By the time that tour came about we were hanging by a thread, fed up with having to deal with lies, an ego, immaturity and disrespect, while at the same time spending hours booking tours and organizing everything. The night before the show in your hometown we played Paris and Luke, who had been trying to get out of the tour the whole trip, ‘fainted’ and called an ambulance. The paramedics told him nothing was wrong with him and they needed to get back to work. They left, annoyed they had been called to the scene. That was the last attempt he gave to get of the tour without being straight up about it. That evening he said he wanted to leave to go back to the UK. He left, after much argument trying to get him to at least finish the last week and not let people down. We were all disappointed but by that point we were all mentally exhausted from having to deal with him that I said I didn’t want to do the band anymore. We (not him, of course) had to apologies to all the promoters and the band we were on tour with who witnessed all this from the start (AYS), our tour driver, roadies, and the label who had JUST released our LP. I heard people in your hometown were upset we didn’t show up, but believe me, there was nothing we could do at that point. The most irritating part was after all of that and talking it out, he spread a lot of rumors about how Tomas ‘bullied him off the tour’, which was a real kick in the face to everyone, including Tomas, who had to bite their tongues and cater to Luke’s will just so we wouldn’t let down everyone who put time into making the tour work. Maybe it was to cover up or deflezzzct his own behavior, who knows. By that point most people close to the band/in the UK scene knew what he was like and had witnessed his behavior so the rumors didn’t really stick.
I was definitely bummed out about that band ending at the time as it was doing fairly well. But at the end of the day it’s only a hardcore band. Makes me laugh thinking about how silly and trivial it all is now in perspective. Luke sold out almost immediately after and I haven’t seen him at a show for years. I have no bad feeling towards him now, maybe he has changed, who knows. It was a lifetime ago. The band definitely taught me a lot.
I know this one is gonna be hard but, which are your 5 favorites releases on CARRY THE WEIGHT and why?
Oh man, tough one! In no particular order: Incitement – «Hyena» 12’’ (perfect metallic hardcore), Rot In Hell/Wayfarer split 7’’ (artwork rules), Said and Done – «Weight of the World» 7’’ (VERY underrated NYHC worship), Correction – «demo» (Raw as fuck Straight Edge hardcore feat. xSTAFFANx), xRepentancex – «The Sickness of Eden» LP (shameless, but the artwork by Sue Coe is great and it was our first gatefold LP).
In my opinion UK has now the best European hardcore scene with so many good bands, from Hardcore Punk to Edge Metal. However from where I live, it seems UK is not linked to the mainland and you seem to have more connections with the American East Cost than with Belgium, Germany or Western Europe. How would you explain that? And what’s your opinion on the UK and European scene in general?
I am so happy about the UK scene right now. After being pretty awful for a few years, things got REALLY good since about 2012. Great bands and lots of them too. I think that US connection is probably a language/cultural thing more than anything else to be honest. But I don’t know, UK/EU relations seem pretty good to me. Europe has a some excellent bands right now and it’s always fun to tour. I would like to play France more. The 2013 SV tour we did had a few French shows and I enjoyed them all. I love the south of the country too.
Time for your last words, shout outs and bands to check out.
Thanks for doing the interview! Listen Day of Rights!
Twitching Tongues came out of nowhere and blew everyone away with their demo released in 2010. Since then I’ve been a huge fan of their sound, until they put out Disharmony in 2015. That was it for me, I thought “alright they’re done” after I first listened to it. But guess what ? I now love it. This record is weird, it’s a blend of many styles and riffs that don’t always match together but yeah, I love it. Anyway, how can you go wrong with a name taken from an Only Living Witness’ song?
This interview was conducted in May 2015 and was supposed to feature in S&A Fanzine #2.
Even if you probably need no introduction for anyone who’s been into hardcore for the past few years, can you introduce Twitching Tongues, its members and how everything got started?
Twitching Tongues is: myself – Taylor Young, my brother – Colin Young, the legendary F. Sean Martin, and the best backbones we could ask for, Anthonie Gonzalez & Cayle Sain. Originally the band started in 2009 with Colin and I wanting to do something a little different from our band at the time (Ruckus), and we released a demo in 2010. Things sort of spiraled out from there.
It’s obvious you are heavily influenced by Only Living Witness, Life Of Agony or Section 8 but I’m sure you have many other sources where you draw elements from, either it’sDeath Metal or NYHC. Could you tell us what feeds your ears to come up with that unique sound Twitching Tongues perform for more than 5 years now?
Well you pretty much nailed it right there. Only Living Witness and Type O Negative were the two original influences for the band with the demo, and then on the first LP we added more Exhorder and Carnivore type stuff and just added more metal from there. The thing we jokingly say is that we want to sound like Suffocation and Fleetwood Mac slammed together.
What’s up with the lineup? Not trying to get the latest gossip but I was just surprised to see Michael and Keith left the band when you didn’t have any lineup changes since you started, except hiring Leopoldo for “In Love There Is No Law”.
Keith hasn’t been in the band since 2012. Leo actually played on the Preacher Man 7”, where he did the guitar solo in the Candlemass cover. Kyle and Mike left to take Forced Order to the next level, which they definitely are doing and Leo decided touring couldn’t be his main focus anymore, but still plays in God’s Hate with Colin.
And so, how did you get Sean Martin from Hatebreed to join you? I’m sure you guys have been playing Hatebreed records a lot as many hardcore and metal kids. Isn’t it a bit weird to now be playing with him?
It’s definitely surreal. We have some mutual friends and I saw him joking about starting a band with one of them, so I sent a shot in the dark email to him and he loved the idea. We all became great friends fast and we have a great time hanging out.
It’s undeniable your new album “Disharmony” stands as a turning point in your career, first on a musical level but also by getting signed by one of the biggest Metal labels, Metal Blade. What kind of reaction did you get about it? I’ve seen a lot of people bashing it in reviews here and there. But I’m sure you also got good comments about it, maybe from different people than before?
With any new step we take comes a new flood of people who dislike us. We’re weird and not for everybody, and that’s fine. We honestly got mostly favorable reviews from a lot of new places, and some familiar, but some general-music fan reviewed it on YouTube and it got a lot of views, and a guy who reviewed the record for Decibel Magazine who had a personal vendetta against me and my brother was allowed to review the record and gave it a negative review also. So because those were big places, a lot of people saw those, but we got many many more positive reviews than we did negative.
Since you released it, did you see any evolution among your fan base? Maybe more metal kids and less hardcore kids?
I don’t think there are any less hardcore kids, but we definitely saw an upswing with some metal people. Largely we remained the same, which is totally fine with us. We love what we’ve got and we’ll play the way we do forever.
Did Sean Martin contribute to write “Disharmony”? Did the songs just happen to be sounding like they do or did you guys plan on making your sound evolves into something new? If so, is there any particular reason behind this decision?
Sean joined after the album was recorded. We just wrote songs that we wanted to hear really. It wasn’t a conscious decision to be heavier or whatever, we just wrote what we felt like writing. The next album could be totally different, who knows!
By the way, how do you work on Twitching Tongues songs? How do you make use of the inspiration you receive from music / bands you listen too? The two of you, on your own when writing riff, or altogether in the rehearsal room? Is the creation process similar for all your bands?
Colin will have some ideas or I will have some ideas and we’ll just make songs around them. We’ll use song structures we love from certain bands, or maybe note progressions to make different kinds of riffs. Every song is different really. It’s definitely different for each band too.
About signing with Metal Blade records: First of all can you tell us how did it happen? Did you guys think twice before giving them a green light? And second: I ‘m sure there are benefits about being on a bigger label (better audience etc) but there might also be some bad things in return (records sold at higher prices for instance). In your opinion, what are pros and cons about being on Metal Blade, and on a professional label in general?
Our friend Andy from Every Time I Die really pushed us with them and they were interested so we just went for it. We knew Closed Casket had to be involved so it was a joint effort with vinyl. A big label meant we could make really nice vinyl packaging, and we were able to make oversized Stoughton jackets which I love, and Europe had a 180 gram version. I don’t mind the higher price since we really made a high quality product. The label definitely gave us more of a push, helped us with the music video and promotion of our band in some really great ways, while remaining true to our aesthetic and the way we do things. We honestly couldn’t be happier with the Metal Blade/Closed Casket combination.
Last one about “Disharmony”: was the deal with Metal Blade set before or after they heard the new album? I know some big labels announce they will put out one of their band’s new album even before it’s recorded, if it happened, weren’t they surprised to hear a new kind of Twitching Tongues?
They heard a few demos of Disharmony, Insincerely Yours and The End of Love before we signed and they loved it. We honestly also thought Metal Blade was a great idea just because of how the new songs were sounding.
I’m sure you are aware of a sad recent event in the Metal world: that lame video of Phil Anselmo shouting “White Power” and doing the Nazi Salute at a Dimebag Tribute Gig. Even though it was probably a really bad joke that shouldn’t have been filmed this leads me to ask you what’s your opinion on dissociating a band’s music from its members, and by extension, from their ideas. For instance, Burzum and VargVikernes, One Life Crew or other extreme metal bands such as Disma, Drudkh … To make a long story short, can you enjoy / support a band if you are aware of its members being more than sketchy but their ideas wouldn’t appear in their lyrics?
That’s a tough question. I think each band has a different scenario. The Disma singer claims he was just being edgy to shock people, and in some ways I appreciate that but definitely don’t condone racism. One Life Crew was just super right wing, which technically is just an opinion and they made great songs. I like those two, and I love Pantera and all of Phil’s bands. I do think it was a joke in very poor taste, but he’s also made that joke a few times so I really don’t know how to judge on that. I’m also a white male so I don’t think I’m the person to ask. I could have an opinion all day but in the end I’m not the type of person being oppressed by these things so I can’t say what effect it’s having on other people, and whether that’s ok or not.
On your end, Twitching Tongues lyrics are far from dealing with hardcore / metal clichés and seem to be more introspective and deep. What’s the writing process? Is only Colin behind every word the band puts into music?
He’ll pick a topic and go for it. It’s definitely all him with me kind of being the executive decision on certain things. Typical hardcore stuff can also be great, but it’s never been the way we work. I love old NYHC but it’s all been done, so we take pieces of the shit we love and add to it.
Let’s talk about “World War 5”, is this song dealing with pure fiction or is there another meaning idea behind?
It’s both a spiritual sequel to Carnivore’s “World Wars III & IV” and a view on what the future holds for our world.
After reading “Deliver Us To Evil” lyrics I can guess you guys are not religious. However it feels like there is a strong religious imagery around the band. In your opinion, what’s the place of faith in the Hardcore / Metal scene? After all it’s a strong belief, just like straight edge or other values can be. Are you comfortable with bands preaching or just even talking about it, in a scene born from Punk?
The song is anti-religious and we have many songs on the topic, and even our band’s logo is of that nature. We usually don’t fuck with Christian bands, but mostly just because they’re bad bands with shallow words that can’t be held up.
By the way, your logo is a reversed Patriarchal Cross. Why did you choose another religious related symbol and what’s the meaning behind it for you?
Well for us it’s an upside-down cross, with an extra line to create two T’s for Twitching Tongues. It happens to be that French cross but there’s really no correlation.
You guys play/played in various bands. If I’m right it’s a total of 8 bands in addition to TT (Nails, Skinfather, God’s Hate, Ruckus, Disgrace, Downpresser, Forced Order, Mizery). Plus now Sean who’s active in other bands as well. How do you deal with being in so many active bands? And don’t you think scattering in various projects can affect the quality of each of them?
The current line up of Twitching Tongues doesn’t have many scheduling conflicts. It usually works out. Colin and Anthonie play in God’s Hate, Cayle plays in Mizery, God’s Hate and Downpresser but none are full time, and I have Nails which is another part time thing. Sean does DJ stuff, and he makes sick beats but we’re the only band he plays with live currently. It’s rare that there’s any conflict, and each band has its own set writers so it never hurts the song quality.
Taylor, you run “The Pit” Studio, which also keeps you quite busy I’m sure. Are you guys now living out of your music activities? Otherwise, what are your jobs or occupations?
The bands really don’t make much money, and if they do they usually go back into the band to do other stuff. Yeah I run the studio as my day job. Colin works in Television. Sean tattoos in Connecticut and Anthonie & Cayle do various jobs in LA.
Among all the records that you produced/recorded, which one are you the proudest of and why?
Lately I really love Disharmony and the God’s Hate album. I also just finished recording the Mizery album which I think is really great and it was mixed by Arthur Rizk.
About recording, why did you decide to re-record “Preacher Man” and put it on “In Love There Is No Law”? This usually happens when a band picks up a demo song to put a better recorded version on a proper record, but here the 7” version was just fine, and pretty similar to the LP version. Moreover both records were released pretty close in time. Is that because this song is special to you?
7” singles get lost over time. It would have been forgotten in the following years. It was always going to be on the album but we wanted to get some new music out faster since “Sleep Therapy” was delayed by almost a full year. 75% of “In Love There Is No Law” was written before Sleep Therapy was released.
Every time you come to France you mention Kickback when you are on stage (you even covered them once in Paris), actually most of American bands do too. What’s your favorite KKK record and why? According to you what makes that band special, stand out from the crowd, almost worshipped that much overseas?
They are the best non-American hardcore band of all time, and even in my top 20 hardcore bands ever. They have a certain grit and realness, and they also just had very high quality songs and albums. A truly unique and amazing band. They are legendary in the USA because no one has seen them, but their albums are of a grade that is unmatched by most bands of their age and era.
Have you ever listened to any other French band than Kickback? As you may have heard of, Kickback members are also involved in (Diapsiquir, Arkon Infaustus…)? Are you into it?
L’espirit Du Clan has some cool songs. There was also another band in the mid 2000’s that sounded like Kickback that was pretty cool but I can’t remember their name.
What are your 3 favorite Twitching Tongues songs and why?
That changes depending on the day but right now I’d say “Cannibal”, “Insincerely Yours (Tears & Blood)”, and “Asylum Ave”. They’re my favorite songs to play and to listen to on the record.
What are you best and worst memories as a band?
For me it’s all about the shows. The worst was a show we played in Copenhagen to literally 0 people, and right now the best was our set at United Blood a few weeks ago.
I’m sure you have tons of plans with Twitching Tongues, can you tell me more?
We’re currently on part of Bane’s final tour, after that we head to Japan, and we play the final Rain Fest as well as the resurrected Sound & Fury. After that we’ll have a few more one-offs at the end of the year in the USA, and maybe get over to Russia & Australia in 2017.
Thanks for your time, is there anything you’d like to add? Bands we should check out? Questions you wish I would have asked and didn’t?
Check out God’s Hate, Mizery, Regulate, Lost Souls, Criminal Instinct and King Nine.
Some TWITCHING TONGUES records are available on the store!
Cro-Mags is featuring in the hall of fame of Hardcore Punk without any doubt. They were amongst the very first Hardcore bands I ever listened to and stay to this date one of my favorites. Often imitated but never equalled. I asked a few questions to one of the two figures of the band: Harley Flanagan. This interview was conducted around the time Harley’s full length “Cro-Mags” and book “Life Of My Own” were released and was supposed to feature in S&A Fanzine #2.
I am sure you’ve been asked this a hundred times but could you come back on how you got into hardcore punk?
I didn’t get into it.
I was a punk then it morphed and got faster and turned into Hardcore punk. I was part of that change; the beginning of Hardcore is not something I got into after the fact. I was a part of its beginning, and I helped define it and coin the term.
You are for sure one of the best bass players that Hardcore Punk has ever seen. You were already playing drums for the Stimulators at the age of 12. How did you happen to play instruments so young? Did you receive any musical education at school or something?
Some people are born musicians.
Why did you eventually decide to play bass? Were drums not your thing?
Cause I got sick of writing songs and teaching people how to play, and then them either not being good enough or quitting. So I switched to make my life as a writer and composer easier. I love doing both and would gladly play either.
Let’s get back on how the early NYHC scene was. What was it like to go to a gig as a teenager in the early 80’s? Were there really gangs and cops around as described in some old NYHC stories or is this part of a fantasy kids of today believe in?
Read my book, it will be out in a few months.
I’ve heard there was a strong rivalry with Boston kids. How was it when they decided to show up in NYC for shows? Was that rivalry related with them being straight edge?
Did New York kids also go to Boston shows?
Again… Read my book.
We never went to Boston shows unless we were playing there.
Talking about Straight Edge, how did you feel back in the days about this huge Youth Crew wave of straight edge kids rising in the mid / late 80’s in NYC? Was it another kind of rivalry or did you guys manage to coexist without too much trouble?
It was actually not very huge at all and didn’t influence very much. None of the old school guys gave a fuck or even noticed that shit ’cause it was already so late in the game. That’s just a fantasy these guys have now that they have gotten old and people have written books glorifying their youth; they think the shit was bigger than it was and meant more than it did. And the fact is most of those bands weren’t even from the city. I grew up on the Lower East Side and none of those people did, they just came in for the Sunday afternoon matinees.
We could read John Joseph’s version about the History of Cro Mags in his book. Without trying to pour oil on the fire or shit talking, could you let us know about your version of all the mess around Cro Mags?
I never read his book. As far as my book goes, buy it and read it yourself.
It’s undeniable that Cro Mags radically changed how Hardcore Punk sound like, adding a big twist of Metal into Punk. First of all, is that something you really wanted to do and you thought “let’s revamp this whole style” or did it happen by mistake? Then, what kind of reaction did you get from people listening for the first time to Cro Mags?
Nothing I did musically was a mistake. I knew what I wanted to hear and what I wanted to create. I took from my influences and built on it. I wrote what was in my head and in my heart. I grew up on punk, I saw all the great hardcore bands from Bad Brains to Minor Threat to Black Flag, the Circle Jerks etc etc- I was into Motorhead, Sabbath and Venom. Cro-Mags was the result of what was inside of me and what I grew up on and the life I lived.
And I can honestly say the reaction was always the same. No matter how any of us feel about each other now or since, when we were the AOQ line up, you really couldn’t touch us. Me, Parris, Doug, Mackie and John as a group at that point in time, despite whatever imperfections we may have had as individuals, as a group, it was something special. We all brought something to the table and the chemistry was special and that is why even though we only ever recorded one album as that line up, it has stood the test of time and people still talk about it 30 years later. Not many people can say that.
“Best Wishes” and “Revenge” are the only Cro Mags album where John isn’t singing. How would you say this affected the sound of the band ? Were these albums better / less good in your opinion?
My Opinion doesn’t matter. It was a lot easier to record without him.
If you had to keep only one Cro Mags album, which one would it be and why?
Well obviously AOQ had the most impact ( I prefer the original recordings) but I like Revenge a lot as well.
If I asked “what is your favorite Cro Mags album?” would your answer be the same?
It would be the same answer.
Your debut album with Harley’s War was called “Cro-Mag” in 2003, now 13 years later you release a new LP titled “Cro Mags”? What motivated you to name your albums after the name of the band?
Cause it’s my name. It might as well be my middle name. I wrote the music, I came up with the name. I am re-claiming what is mine; a name that has been misappropriated and dragged through the mud for more than 20 years by a fraudulent band that didn’t write any of the music.
Is there a reason why this new album got an extra “S” at the end of CRO MAG?
The cover of this new album features a really cool picture by John Conn that gives a feeling of dangerousness and insecurity. What is the idea behind this artwork?
It’s just a great photo. I don’t think there is any insecurity in it at all, Danger, yes. This is a photo taken in the subways in NYC back in the 80’s and it reminds me of exactly of what it was like growing up in the city.That’s why I used it. That is what made me what I am and gave my music its edge.
Why did you choose that specific picture? Did you pick John Conn’s picture just because of this one or do you have any further interests in the photographer’s work / history?
I wanted a picture that reminded me of the New York I grew up in. This one caught my eye.
He has taken tons of amazing photos and he’s a good friend of mine. You should all check out his work and buy prints for your walls!
What lineup is behind this new full length? Are you planning on doing shows or will it stay a studio band?
Initially I tracked all the demos on acoustic guitar, then I had several different guitarist friends come in and play on it, my friend Pablo Silva played drums.
If I’m right I’ve seen a post on your personal Facebook account a few weeks ago saying you would consider coming back on stage with CRO MAGS, including John. Is the hatchet buried? Do you really think this could eventually happen?
No I don’t. I would love to make peace with all of them. But I don’t think they are ready or able yet.
But I would do it. I have put it out there and I want that to be known. But in all honesty I really care less and less about it everyday. I would do a show, to make the fans happy. I’d record a album, cause I think we could do a great one and I think it’s a shame that we only ever recorded the 1 record- “AOQ” as a group. I would be happy to share the stage with them one last time.
But honestly none of them are people I really want in my life at this point. I am in a great place in my life and I don’t really want to bring any negativity or any of those guys back into my life. A show would be great, and for the fans I would do it. A record would be great. I write songs everyday that’s never a problem, and I would even love to play with them, all of them again even if it was just in a rehearsal studio together in front of no one just to do it. But it’s all good. I’m not holding my breath.
The band has always been associated with Hare Krishna. Are you still into Krishna? How would you say this helped you to go through your hard times living in squats etc?
It helped me then, because I needed something, but I am not into religious organizations; I don’t align myself with any sect, church or religion.
I have always been into Martial Arts. I have been training Jiu-Jitsu under Master Renzo Gracie for over 20 years. I have a Black Belt under him and I teach at his academy in NYC; alongside Renzo Gracie and his family, and legendary MMA fighters.It’s a great job. I love it.
And yes there are similarities; It’s art, it flows, it has rhythm. It takes a creative mind to get good at it, and it is a way to express yourself. I love it. It changed my life and how I interact with the world around me. It changes everyone’s life who takes it up and sticks with it.
Do you still keep an eye on what’s going on today in Hardcore? If so, is there any recent band / record that makes you think Hardcore is still cool in 2016?
I heard a couple songs from a couple bands I liked, but no. There is really not much new under the sun. A Lotta different versions of the same things.
Do you happen to go to shows sometimes? How would you say they are different from the ones during the “glory days of Hardcore”?
I don’t go to shows. To me it’s just a lot of posturing and tough guy wanna be gang shit. Spinning back fists and dumbness; it’s pretty boring to me.
How do you feel about how Hardcore has evolved?
What keeps you busy and how do you spend your days now?
I teach Jiu-Jitsu 6 days a week; I am married to an amazing woman; I have 2 kids, 2 dogs and a horse.
Life is fucking great.
I’m sure your give your kids good music to listen to. Do they like Hardcore? Would you like your kids to be involved in bands or going to Hardcore shows when they will be older?
They like a lot of different kinds of music.They have been to shows, they went to CBGB’s and I bet most of people reading this probably didn’t. I don’t necessarily hope they get into being in bands, but if they do I will always support and encourage them.
By extension, do you think evolving into hardcore punk brought you some specific values? Which of these would like to pass down to your kids?
I dont think the scene has any values. I think most people on it are full of shit.
Thanks a lot for your time Harley. Is there anything you would like to add?
Justice needs no introduction if you are into Hardcore Punk, he’s the leader of Trapped Under Ice and Angel Dust. I’ve never been able to catch Trapped Under Ice in a proper venue but saw them live a month ago at the huge french metal festival HELLFEST, and they killed it. I first met Justice at a show we played (Harm Done) with Higher Power in Berlin last summer. This show was not very crowded but Justice was here and came by the merch table at the end of the night to chat for a while. This interview was conducted by email in july 2017.
Let’s start this the classic way. Please introduce yourself, how old are you where do you live and everything!
I’m Justice. I am 31 years old. I live alone with my English Bull Terrier, Spike, in Los Angeles. We sleep in the same bed.
What do you do besides running the label and playing / touring with various bands?
Unfortunately i don’t have time for very much outside of that. I have a few close friends in LA that I do normal people stuff with.
How long have you been involved in Hardcore and music in general, and how did you get into it?
I became aware of hardcore punk music around 13 from my cousin and some friends i skateboarded with. Until about 18 I became increasingly more involved until it was the only thing I cared about
It’s a bit cliché but, what did Hardcore bring you? Like I know it helped me to define who I am and my values when I was a teenager. Not only being straight edge or vegan, but also the way I consider things and how to do them. Try to make as much as I can, on my own and not waiting for someone else to do it for me.
When I was younger it gave me a sense of self; a better understanding of whats important to me. Then after seeing the world a bit, music gave me a knowledge of different types of people and beliefs not as familiar to me. I think the most important thing that it gave me is a perspective of people, how much we have in common, and a desire to share that with others.
Trapped Under Ice just released a new 11 track full length. What can we expect and how do you feel about it?
The record is short and energetic. Everything I love about most of my favorite hardcore records. There’s no moment of the record that I feel like drags or takes too long; never a feeling of wanting to get to the next part. The record is written so that someone with a short attention span, like myself, can always be in the moment and appreciate what we were feeling at the time.
If you’re totally honest, is there anything you would change on this record now it’s done and you can have hindsight?
No. We wrote my favorite trapped under ice record and I think it was perfect timing for where we are as a band.
What were the reasons you called it a day with TUI and then got back together 4 years later?
We never called it a day. That would imply that we broke up. We publicly announced that we weren’t going to play shows for 2 years and that’s exactly what we did. We were tired from a lot of people pulling at us from all angles. The band got a lot of attention and had a lot of demand. At some point it didn’t feel good. So we took 2 years off from playing shows and spent 2 years focusing on other music endeavors but more importantly we spent 2 years just being friends without the responsibility of being somewhere at a certain time to perform, record or whatever bands do. It also gave us a cool opportunity to step outside of the band, see it from a different perspective, better understand the kind of impact it had, and have a clearer vision of what we wanted from it.
Because you went seperate ways with different bands and all grew up during that hiatus, are there any changes or evolution within the band or is it just like it was when you guys split?
To me the biggest changes would be internal things that a lot of people don’t see. Things like how we function as a band.
In a recent interview you claimed to regret a bit the violence TUI unintentionally brought at shows, with people moshing way too hard sometimes. When did you start to feel uncomfortable with this? Do you think it had an impact on the TUI songs that came after this awareness, either musically or in your way to write lyrics?
I’ve always been uncomfortable with the type of person who is at a show to flex and bully people. That happens sometimes and I don’t think it does or should represent the hardcore community entirely, but in the case of trapped under ice I saw that type of person becoming increasingly more involved. That’s sucks. That is by no means to say that I don’t enjoy genuine examples of people letting loose and going crazy. If you’ve been around enough, the difference between the two is clear. Through our music and the way we present ourselves I have no intention to alienate someone that loves hardcore punk music and wants to express them self in an aggressive way. I have every intention to alienate bullies and people that think a mosh pit is an excuse to hit women or smaller people than you with no repercussion
There has clearly been an evolution in TUI’s sound since Big Kiss Good Night: way more « rock » and less straight in your face than the first TUI’s records. Was it intentional? What were the factors that led to that new direction?
I genuinely think that “Big Kiss Goodnight” is rockier at times than anything on “Heatwave”. Songs like “victimized” and “you and I” had huge pop elements. The production was cleaner on that record. Heatwave has hooks but at the same time it faster, dirtier, and more raw. To me, “Heatwave” is all the territories we’ve explored in the past, with more energy and less “breathing room”.
What would say your influences went from (since the demo) to (with Heatwaves)?
The influences in the beginning of TUI were pretty straight forward. We wanted to emulate Biohazard, Next Step Up, and Breakdown. Maybe less conscious but more impacting was Crown Of Thornz. I went a 2 year period around then where I almost listened to nothing but COT. I think around “Secrets of the World” we were more into madball, stigmata, stout, and maximum penalty. I listened to a lot of prince then. We became more aware of the way pop sensibility could be used in hardcore. Simple hooks that made something fun and memorable. That became a much bigger focal point on “Big Kiss Goodnight”. Again I think “Heatwave” explores all those same influences, but through a more direct filter. More to the point. In that sense I would say that a band like the Ramones are an influence. I had a conscious thought that I wanted this to be our “Lowest of the Low”. Brendan and Sam explored some rhythmic ideas that we haven’t in the past that are pretty cool and unique to how people see hardcore.
What’s the writing process in TUI? I know you also play the guitar so did you contribute in bringing riffs?
I definitely bring riffs to the table. We all throw in ideas and we all have input on what we like and what we think sucks. Some of the songs for this record were ideas as long as 6 years before. We’ve all written hundreds of ideas and shared them with each other in between the time we weren’t playing shows. In the last few months before recording, Brendan flew out to Los Angeles to finalize ideas with Sam and Me.
What are your 3 favorite TUI songs and why?
“Reality unfolds” because it’s the first song we ever wrote and it doesn’t make any sense. We were just confused and weird. The song reflects that.
“Pleased to meet you” has a cool energy and it’s fun to play. The lyrics draw a clear line about the people we are and are very relevant to everything we do as a band today
And as of recently “Move” because it sounds alien but very relative to the things I love about hardcore. I think it will be fun to play live.
What is the thing you got to achieve with a band and that you are the most proud of?
Learning about the world from people that are different than me because we have something to relate to through music
What’s the next big step you would like to take with a band? And on a personal level?
Keep challenging the way people see each other and what’s acceptable in terms of music and art. I hope to do that with the band and anything I’m involved in.
If I’m right you’ve been spending some time in Europe outside of touring and music. What are the main differences you’ve spotted between living here and in the USA? Where would you choose to spend your old days?
I think about this a lot. Europe and the US are complete different worlds. I’m very comfortable living in Los Angeles but there is a few cities in Europe I could see myself growing old in. I move to different cities a lot because I’m a crazy person. Who knows where I’ll be next year, let alone where I’ll retire to.
Where do you feel the most comfortable : singing with Angel Du$t, playing the guitar with Warfare or screaming at the top of your lungs with TUI?
It’s hard to say! I genuinely get something special out of each band. Sorry that sounds like the easy answer. I will say that I appreciate not spitting blood after angel du$t and warfare shows.
Are you involved in any other bands?
Unfortunately not. I aspire to play in 10 bands at least.
By the way, what’s up with Warfare? That demo tape was sick!
Warfare is mainly Sam Yarmuth’s creation. Although he’s very open to ideas and the other guys contribute a lot. I know they have some new songs in mind and I have a few ideas to share with them as well. So hopefully we will record something dope and soon. 3 of us live in Los Angeles, and the other 2 live in Boston. We have a distance the size of the US between us so that kind of slows the process down some.
Any plans for Angel Du$t?
Angel Du$t is always writing music. We’ve taken a good bit of time from playing shows this year and focusing more on writing. We’ll do another record at some point and hopefully it will confuse people.
You are running Popwig records. Could you tell us more about it? Is this a one-man operation?
Pop wig was started by Daniel Fang, Brendan Yates, and myself. We have a small team behind us which consists of a few employees of Run For Cover. They have been very helpful in guiding us along our dumb ass little way. We’re very fortunate to have very cool bands that let us put out things for them and contribute to the cool dynamic of Pop Wig. There is a lot of cool releases coming up from Bugg, Razorbumps, Bib, And Big Bite. I think it’s cool that each of those bands stands alone and couldn’t be even compared to each other, but all represent the same idea of creation as a means of bringing people together.
What bands are you currently listening to and that everyone should know about?
The Love – Hate question: What pisses you off / makes you happy? At the moment or in general.
People who are to lazy to discover new sounds in the world of punk music piss me off. People who think that something sucks because it’s not what them and their friends were doing 5 years ago. That shit sucks. Also tired of people thinking that they get to determine what is or is not “hardcore” or “punk”.
What makes me happy is seeing a lot of mostly young people who are willing to put themselves in vulnerable positions to meet new people and learn more about the world, music and art.
Thanks a lot for your time. Is there anything else you would like to add?
Advanced perspective is a cool ass record label and represents a lot of what I love about hardcore music. Thanks for interviewing me and doing what you do!
WHO’S TO BLAME is NIGHTWATCHERS’ new EP and get ready to hear an high quality record of sad / dark punk rock. The french quartet from Toulouse, featuring members of Wank For Peace, No Guts No Glory and other cool punk rock bands, already killed it with their 2016’s demo and here are 6 new tracks with a Masshysteri / The Vicious / Radio Birdman feeling.
BLEAKNESS is a new-ish band from my hometown, Nantes, France with members of Chaviré, Amanda Woodward, and they released a very solid debut record on Destructure records. 4 tracks of low disto hardcore punk / punk rock with a melancholic vibe. This sounds like a record I’ll be playing over and over for the next couple weeks.
The whole wave of Revolution Summer revival is not always my cup of tea but some bands catch my attention more than others. SUNSTROKE from Philadelphia is one of them. These 7 tracks are full of emotions, catchy melodies and sick bass lines, everything you need to be sad while thinking summer is over again. The cover of the demo features an Egg Hunt rip off Tshirt, just to give you a hint.