Album of the Month... February 2015

Eternal Misery by No Zodiac

21 May 2011

Tragedy Shows Today

Tragedy are playing two shows in one day in London which is pretty awesome. If you managed to get a ticket then it's going to be a great day for you but for those who have not both of these are sold out unfortunately.

19 May 2011

Famine: 'Shadows of the Past'

There has been a great amount of decent records out this year and after listening to this for the first time, is no exception. I am a big fan of Famine’s earlier release ‘Every Road Leads Back Here’ as it had quite an original sound to it but can their new album deliver the same response. Well, to answer that of course it does. Although losing some of their older traits, Ireland’s Famine have produced another solid record which is definitely worth a listen.

Although this style of hardcore may not be everyone’s cup of tea ‘Shadows of the Past’ has a more modern sound to it which I did not like as much. I am not complaining about this though, as the introduction track kicks in with a slow instrumental piece which is quite a nice listen. Don’t get too accustomed to this though as ‘Mission Statement’ blasts in with a strong heavier hardcore style which is instantly a great start. Every song on this album contains good quality bellowing vocals erupting with a sheer amount of passion which really drives this record.

This album is interesting as there is a mixture of sounds incorporated into each song so it doesn’t get boring or sound repetitive. There is a steady structure of instrumental talent which adds a pleasant mixture of different tempo drum beats and guitar chords all thrown together with some heavier moshing sounding riffs. This is a well put together album and sounds like it has been a work in progress for quite some time now!

Combining the perfect mix of slow heavy style hardcore and fast paced riffs Famine have created an album that stands out from some of the usual duplicated bands providing the listener with such satisfaction. If you get chance, do check this band out and support them by buying their record. 

Buy the record here

17 May 2011

Stab: Demo

Stab is a fairly recent Straight Edge Hardcore Punk band from London. With some awesome material showing some resemblance to such bands as Lärm, Discharge and Ripcord. This band is already gaining a following from the UK and I’m not surprised with members from the almighty Never Again, Hello Bastards and Aboltion. Prepare yourself for some extremely fast, angry and powerful music of how hardcore should sound!

If you want something to deliver frustration and a sheer amount of anger then this is the record for you. With tracks ‘Blinded by Force,’ ‘Fascism Brings Death’ and ‘Mental Regulation’ this demo brings song after song of rabid hardcore that will leave your eardrums sore. If you’re into early 80’s style hardcore in the vein of Ripcord and Sore Throat then this should be your next investment. I love the raw sounding recordings and if you want to check this sound out for real you can check them out at a show near you.

Help support this band by buying their demo (it’s just what the doctor ordered).

4 May 2011

My Turn Interview

My Turn is quite a recent positive hardcore band based in Athens, Greece. They formed together in 2010 and play a mix of fast punk and youth crew hardcore. Recently we have been in contact and I thought I would share with you an interview that I asked them to do. I hope you enjoy reading this.

* Can you please introduce yourselves and tell us a little bit of how you got together?
M.: Hello! I’m Mark; I play drums in the band. Me, Apo and Fotaras knew each other from hardcore shows in Athens and we wanted to make a hardcore band. Sergios joined us a bit later and there ya go… My Turn!

F.: Hey I am Fotis and I play guitar. I don't do drugs but I got that vegan riddim and praise the one and only Lord Krishna! Um, yeah. First of all let me say thanks for the interview. I checked your blog and it rules so I am glad that we will be on it. We got together in the summer of 2010 when me and Markos wanted to do a band and make some of our own hardcore in the vein of our favourite bands. Apostolis joined in on the vox duties and a little later and after some search we found Sergios, the wickedest bass player ever. We are a tight bunch of young muthas.

A.: Yo, I’m Apostolis and I shout and preach for My Turn. We were formed during the summer of 2010; it was fucking hot, so we went on vacation and started rehearsing regularly in September, when we found a lovely boy called Sergios. He was hotter than summer, though.

* 'Noble Intentions' was released in 2010, what has the feedback from this been?
M.: Well I guess we are still promoting the album in a way in the sense that we are making sure as many people as possible have access to it. Until now the feedback has been pretty good, but as I always believe, this is to be proven in the future. There is still time to see if people will embrace it.

F.: The feedback has been great considering we've been together for such a short while. We did a tape version and then a few CDR versions and all of it got sold out pretty fast. People seem to like the underlying melody in our core and I couldn't be more happy about it. I mean, we play hardcore for sure, but we are also influenced by other stuff like melodic stuff like 90s punk rock and some of us even pop punk, Markos likes Michael Bolton (just kidding), so that 'other' type of influence def comes out in the music. We don't pretend to be the hardest dudes ever so we put some melodic punk in our sound and I am really glad that people like it.

A.: As far as I can figure out, the feedback is way better than what we have expected. We are almost famous nowadays, you know. I’m kidding, haha! Seriously, we’ve sold out / given away for free all our tapes and CDrs, we did some cool interviews for some cooler fanzines and we get offers for live shows everywhere in Greece (plus some propositions for the rest of Europe) every now & then. I don’t need something more. I’m still single though; it’s a huge lie that hardcore / punk singers get all the attention… Haha! Bad joke.

* What were the inspirations that went into your artwork for your EP and who created the ideas?
M.: I think that Apo is more appropriate to answer this question. All I have to say is we love animals and we generally liked the idea of having an animal-related cover (and artwork in general). For me the octopus came out of nowhere (I first saw it when we got the covers in our hands) but it looked really cool. Aggressive yet positively funny. As you may know we had some “special” covers for the Italian show we did in Milan and they were more Italy-related. I love them both! 

F.: I have no clue as we gave to this guy, Bill, who is Apostolis's friend and he did it on its own accord, but I love that damn octopus! He created a niche, like other bands have zombies, bears with cut-off heads, sharks and what not. We have the fucking octopus!!

A.: Bill / Jerboa Illustrations took care of the awesome artwork. Everything is handmade. I told him that we need something crucial featuring an animal or something like that; he came back with this cute octopus spitting ink in a human’s face. So, to be honest, I dunno what the inspiration for this design is… I dig it, though. It’s like the revenge of animals against human’s oppression… Or maybe I exaggerate… The tape cover is completely different, featuring a weird human’s face; it’s done by Ultra Grim Disign. As Markos wrote, we had some special covers for our Italian show, as well…

* Which bands influenced you the most to want to create this style of music?
M.: Well, in My Turn we sort of put our personal taste when it comes to hardcore music. For me it’s something between youth crew hardcore and punk rock. I guess the other guys will have some more influences.

F.: Well I guess we all love youth crew and fast hardcore, stuff that we grew up with etc. The whole spectrum of this hardcore style is an influence for us but we all have our own favorites. For me as a guitarist, some bands that have influenced me are Shelter, In My Eyes, Kid Dynamite, Face To Face, Dag Nasty, Good Riddance... Maybe some non-hardcore influences would be taking pop stuff like the Smiths and Cure and making some hardcore out of it, but though I don't listen to that stuff too much.

A.: We all have different backgrounds concerning our music taste. Of course, there’s a boiling point called hardcore / punk that defines us. I don’t like stating names, though. We are into melodic and energetic hardcore / punk with a positive outlook. Nothing more, nothing less…

* What thoughts do you have on the ever changing hardcore scene and have you noticed a change to your local scene? While we are on this subject, would you be able to give us an insight into your local scene?
M.: In my eyes the hardcore scene was and is a quite little scene. There is a small core part but most of the people are passers-by. The “scene” here, if there is such thing anyway, is something like that too. There are bands but they don’t work all together as a scene.

F.: The scene like you said is constantly changing and for me that's a good thing. I have no problems with change, it's stagnancy I don't like. Some of the new stuff (trends, music styles, clothes, 'must listen' bands) I don't like but it's not like it really bothers me. I think that the faces and people change but the main message behind hardcore remains the same: unity, integrity, independent thinking. I see hardcore as a living philosophy, so I don't care about the coating as long as the message remains true. The scene in Greece is like everywhere else I guess, there are hyped bands and good bands, good kids and haters. I take the good with the bad and don't worry about it too much.

A.: The scene changes almost every day. A scene consists of all its parts, so when the parts change, then the scene does so. It’s natural and logical. Trends come and go, kids come and go, that’s the way it will always be. We try to stick to our values and represent our beliefs in the kindest way. Moreover, we play music that comes straight from our hearts. We never chose a music style considering what’s hype and what’s fashionable nowadays. We definitely know that we will never be a hyped band and we don’t even care about this. Concerning our local scene, there are a lot of individuals and some bands that work really hard to support it, and this is very promising for the future. We need much more action, though!  

* I thought 'Noble Intentions' was a fantastic listen, are there any particular messages that you wanted to get across to the listeners?
M.: Thank you very much. The general message is positivity in everyday life. However since we are living in this society we are affected by what happens around us. So this reflects on the, sometimes, “negative” spirit. But the general point is: “shit happens, raise your head and move on”.

F.: Thanks a lot! I don't write the lyrics (Apostolis does) but we do talk a lot about our message as a band. We want everyone in the band to agree on the stuff we promote. I guess we all agree it's about a message of positivity (we are all fans of PMA!), and of course anti-violence and anti-hate. There is too much of it going on in the world. It sickens me to see people so disenchanted with life on earth that they don't care if the person next to them is down in the dumps. Violence can also be more subtle than that, it's in our lives in the sense that we ourselves sometimes turn into opressors, towards our friends, our girlfriends, our family. So we try to promote some positivity and understanding and the sound itself promotes an energetic and upbeat way of life. For me it doesn't get any better than that (promoting a worthy message), that's why I love doing this band so much.

A.: I’m glad that you like it. We like it, too, haha! We wanna spread out positive messages and defeat the misery that is floating around in our scene and our society. The lyrics deal with personal issues, describing emotions and exposing frustration, anger, love and hope. We are not here to tell you what to do, but we can help each other to do something together…

* Are your members involved in any other current bands?
M.: Fotaras is the only one who does. He plays in a punk rock band called “Lost Meanings”.

F.: I play(ed) bass in a punk rock band called Lost Meanings, I'm not sure what our future will be. I also play guitar in a doom metal / punk band with some friends from my neighbourhood in the vein of Pentagram, Goatsnake, St Vitus etc. I play hip hop beats on the drums on their spliff breaks. One day I hope to have enough money and time so I can make my own vegan straight edge hip hop project (a big dream of mine). I will have Apostolis rap to it while I make some tight beats.

A.: We all used to play in some bands in the past, but we are now focused on My Turn. Fotis is playing with Lost Meanings, every now & then, though.
* On a final note, what are the future plans for your band?
M.: We plan to play as much as possible, write better songs and on top of all stay healthy and active. Thanks a lot for you time. Take care and be happy!

F.: I aim for us to gain ridiculous scene cred, and intimidate people with absurd behaviour that they will somehow take for no reason at all. This is obviously a joke, but sometimes things are actually like that with some people. Go figure. For MT, plans would be to finally convince Sergios to turn straight edge (chances are slim), and to get our asses in the studio to record our next release. I just can't wait. It will be tighter, faster, better, more melodic, more everything. Maybe we'll manage to do a small tour somewhere in Europe next fall as this is our biggest (achievable) dream so far. All you kids out there you gotta keep the faith and don't believe the hype! Respect people and non-human animals alike. Remember you don't need alcohol, you don't need cigarettes, you don't need 'e'. All you need is you.

A.: We are writing new songs, so I guess that sometime sooner or later we must enter the studio to record them! Moreover, we have a bunch of shows scheduled and we have to concentrate on them. Thanks a lot for the interview, we really appreciate it. Go veg(etari)an. 

Reverbnation Profile
My Turn Blogspot

I hope you enjoyed reading this and if you would like to use this interview for anything then please contact me first.

2 May 2011

Damage Control Festival 2011

If you are looking for something to do this bank holiday Monday then look no further as Rucktion Records are presenting Damage Control Festival at the Jamm Bar near Brixton. This is an awesome lineup and some of the best in UK hardcore so do not miss out on this opportunity. Wisdom in Chains are headlining this beast which is an exclusive UK and Europe show. Go to this and support these bands!