Harmer – Harmer EP Review

You ever just want to hop around and break shit?

I don’t. I’m pretty reserved and peaceful. (Read: I’m a nice guy, or maybe I’m just a wimp.)

Release date: February 21, 2021. Label: Self-Released.
But if I did ever just want to hop around and break shit, I would imagine that a record like Harmer’s self-titled EP would be a damned fine soundtrack to my uncharacteristically destructive impulses. Plus, it’s just over seven minutes long, so that’s the perfect amount of time for me to either run out of things I’m disinterested in enough to excuse breaking them, or enough time for me to severely injure myself, or enough time for me just to run out of energy and need to take a breather. I’m an old man now.

As you’d expect from their name, this Finnish trio plys a violent trade, regardless of my own physical and peace-loving limitations. This is hardcore that pushes against grindcore, rough-edged and punk-fueled powerviolence minus any sludgy moments; it’s raw and furious, blasting and grooving and bursting with intensity. There’s no room for subtlety in these seven minutes, and no extra seconds spent on any extraneous meandering. Only one of these tracks extends past the one-minute mark, the bulldozer swagger of “No Excuses.” The songs start, with feedback squalls or four counts on the snare; blastbeats alternate with chunky punky grooves, a la those in the swinging first section of “Cultist Control”; ragged-throat high-pitched screams are screamed, with the occasional hardcore bark for added flavor; a David Lynch soundbite points out the heavy load that Einstein must’ve borne. (“Fuckin’ morons everywhere,” he says. Can’t argue with that.) The explosion commences, destroys, recedes; the cycle begins again, nine times; and as the pulsing grind of “Too Late” crashes to a halt, it’s all done. Rinse yourself off and repeat.

Truthfully, I don’t know shit about the band Harmer; I only know about the EP Harmer (and the song “Harmer” on the EP Harmer by the band Harmer). I was searching for something else in the bowels of Bandcamp when I landed on the page for this one, but there was some intangible intrigue in the serendipitous discovery, so I pushed play. And then I wanted to hop around and break shit, so I pushed play again. And again. I tossed them a few markkaa for their troubles, and now, if stout and aggressive hardcore / powerviolence / grindcore ugliness tickles your proverbial fancy, then I’m politely suggesting you do the same.

Might want to lock up anything valuable and maybe do some stretching before you start hopping around and breaking shit, though…

Posted by Andrew Edmunds

Last Rites Co-Owner; Senior Editor; born in the cemetery, under the sign of the MOOOOOOON...

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