In Crust We Trust: Vol 28

Kia ora, comrades. Welcome to In Crust We Trust. This regular round-up of noisy releases focuses on the harshest strains of punk, hardcore and metalpunk. Tune in for crust, d-beat, stenchcore, raw punk, noisecore, and every other Dis-charged micro-genre. Enjoy the ruckus, and as always, thanks for stopping by. Kia kaha.

A note about K and Town:

Whoops-a-daisy! I was about to submit this month’s edition of ICWT when I stumbled on a compilation I meant to feature in last month’s edition. Let me remedy that situation with a quick-fire blurb.

I’ve met a couple of folks from my neck of the woods – the far-flung isles of Aotearoa New Zealand – who’ve travelled the 17,995 km required to attend Denmark’s long-running K-Town Hardcore Fest (which, FYI, celebrated its 20th anniversary in 2022). Realistically, I’m going to miss the chance to make it there. But I hear great things about the annual event. K-Town has always been a non-profit, volunteer-run venture, and the festival is a crucial gathering point for DIY bands and fans from all over. For the past six years, K-Town’s released an annual Bandcamp compilation of the bands appearing each year and K-Town’s Hardcore Fest 2023 features 34 groups, including acts like Physique, Indre Krig, Rigorous Institution, URIN, Sial, Kohti Tuhoa, and Genöme. The main thrust is raw hardcore – loud and vitriolic – with plenty of well-known bands and up-an-comers to enjoy. A great comp, a legendary fest – win-win.

Systemik Viølence – Negative Mangel Attitude

The motivating force behind Portuguese band Systemik Viølence is the idea that punk rock has gone soft and that the band are here to inject danger back into proceedings. Obviously, the theory that contemporary punk lacks volatility is entirely erroneous. Explosive bands, rabble-rousers, and self-destructive assholes abound. But there’s also no denying that Systemik Viølence’s claim to be the baddest band in town has worked for the band.

Systemik Viølence have released several fast and furious recordings that sound as nasty as rectal bleeding looks. The band’s new full-length, Negative Mangel Attitude, is another venomous-sounding release crammed with pissed-off råpunk and black-hearted metalpunk. Previously, Systemik Viølence mixed G.I.S.M.’s darkness with Disclose’s rawness and slathered on a crusty coat of peak-era Anti Cimex. Corrosive releases like 2017’s Satanarkist Attack and 2018’s Anarquia-Violência burned like battery acid. However, Negative Mangel Attitude hits with a notably heftier punch, calling to mind bands like Warcollapse, Driller Killer, or Skitsystem.

Negative Mangel Attitude’s weightier production adds heavier armour to Systemik Viølence’s raw hardcore – don’t panic, a more thickset sound hasn’t seen the band embrace full-fledged stadium crust. Songs like “Uncivil Disobedience”, “Intellectual Prolapse”, and “Moral Stabbing” are still utterly visceral, but they also feature beefier dimensions than Systemik Viølence’s previous endeavours.

Elsewhere, neck-wreckers like “We Are The Graves Of The Posers”, “Scene Stomper”, and “Ego Is The Bastard” continue to match musical harshness with lyrical obnoxiousness. Obviously, setting out to be deliberately confrontational can end up sounding painfully contrived. However, there’s little doubt that Systemik Viølence mean what they say. The band are uncompromisingly combative, and Systemik Viølence sound more abrasive than ever on Negative Mangel Attitude.

If you’ve enjoyed Systemik Viølence’s previous releases, then all the red-lining rowdiness right here will fit the bill too. Negative Mangel Attitude is a heavier, dirtier, and more incendiary release, and usually, I’d say well done to Systemik Viølence, but they don’t care what you or I think. Reviews, fuck ’em. Opinions, who gives a shit. The truth is revealed in the crucible of battle. Negative attitude – 666%. Badass badassery reigns supreme.

(RSR Records, Doomed Records, Ragingplanet, Regulator Records, Ring Leader)

Swordwielder – Wielding Metal Massacre

Seven months in, and 2023 has proven to be a phenomenal year for brute-force crust releases. So many berserker bands – so many top-notch recordings – and the new EP from Swedish band Swordwielder, Wielding Metal Massacre, stands out as one the best.

Listen to that bone-rattling bass on Wielding Metal Massacre‘s bulldozing opener, “Weapons of the Dark Ages”. If your knees aren’t shaking, and your heart doesn’t feel like it’s about to burst – and you don’t feel like a thousand Vikings are about to come charging out of the mists – then you’re dead inside.

Like Swordwielder’s previous hårdpunk releases – see the massive-sounding System Overlord and Grim Visions of Battle (both HIGHLY recommended) – Wielding Metal Massacre finds Swordwielder utilizing the heaviest and filthiest weaponry from punk and metal’s armouries. Axe-wielding tracks like “Devil in Command” and “Envy the Dead” are devastatingly heavy, with Swordwielder’s grim riffs and gloomy atmospherics evoking god-forsaken scenes. Swordwielder have always honoured their influences, with the band’s apocalyptic sound owing a clear debt to old-school progenitors like Amebix, Axegrinder, Deviated Instinct, and Antisect. That’s more than evident on Wielding Metal Massacre, with primordially dark crust leading the charge on brooding epics like “Beneath a Blood Red Sky” and “Funeral Dirge”.

For all the band’s monolithic might, Swordwielder also exhibit subtler strengths as cleaner vocals and bare-boned musical passages add shade and shadow amongst all the crashing percussion and anvil-heavy riffage. Those moments of nuance are a reminder of how skilled Swordwielder are at writing but also arranging their songs so they achieve maximum impact.

Once again, Swordwielder set the bar for mammoth-sized crust. Wielding Metal Massacre‘s intimidatingly heavy tracks reek of stenchcore’s desolation and decay. Let skulls be split. Let the blood rain. Sure, the world is on its last legs. But bad times have never sounded so good.

(Wielding Metal Massacre Recordings, Profane Existence)

Enzyme – Golden Dystopian Age

Members of Australian noise punk outfit Enzyme have served time in umlaut-friendly groups like Hävittäjät, Krömosom, and Pisschrïst, who are all famed for making a deafening racket. Enzyme’s second full-length, Golden Dystopian Age, bristles with the band’s buzz-saw blend of psych-punk and knuckle-dragging hardcore (think: Confuse swallowing Hawkwind and gargling with Disorder.) However, there’s a new element here – namely, all the doof-doof/oosh-oosh gabber, courtesy of ‘hard techno unit’ NERVE (AKA Joshua Wells) – that further amplifies the mind-twisting nature of Enzyme’s creative exploits. Three years in the making, and with plenty of social and political turmoil at home and abroad to inspire the band, Golden Dystopian Age is a shattered mirror reflecting an even more shattered society. Once again, Enzyme prove that you can simultaneously sound primitive af and ingenious as hell.

*The video featuring Enzyme below is plucked from @ShortSharpShock’s YouTube channel, which is a great resource stacked with live footage, interviews, and videos from the DIY scene in Australia and beyond.

(Hardcore Victim, La Vida En Us Mus)

Adrestia– Dead End Roads

Much of Swedish band Adrestia’s work has paid tribute to heroes of the resistance. The band’s pummeling tracks have often provided bleak sociopolitical commentary, but they’ve also honoured those battling persecution, racism, misogyny, and every other painful issue plaguing this world. Adrestia’s latest release, Dead End Roads, is a 4-song EP featuring Tomas Jonsson (of Anti Cimex, Wolfpack, and Shitlickers fame) on vocals. Jonsson briefly guested on Adrestia’s The Wrath of Euphrates LP. But this time, he sings all the songs on Dead End Roads.

Adrestia fuse d-beaten crust with classic HM-2 death metal. Previous releases have sometimes utilized diverse instrumentation, but Dead End Roads sticks to shoving anthemic crustcore down your throat from go to whoa. It’s Adrestia doing what Adrestia do best; battering down the walls with unapologetic punk. BIG riffs are backed by barrelling production, with Adrestia hurling Molotov cocktails aplenty on tracks like “No Way Out”, “Ticking Bombs”, and “Crushed to Pieces”. Adrestia stick to their “no illusions, no utopias” mantra throughout, with Dead End Roads delivering hulking crust that’ll prove extra-enticing for fans of Wolfbrigade, Martyrdöd, Disfear, and kin.

(Alerta Antifascista)

偏執症者 (Paranoid)

Swedish band 偏執症者 (Paranoid) have shown a fair amount of creative wriggle room over the past decade. While always tethered to råpunk, several of the band’s releases have blended Disclose-inspired action with Venom-worshipping black metal. Other releases have foregrounded harsher feedback-driven happenings. And many have amplified d-takt’s crude and crusty madness. The point being, Paranoid’s shifting sound has always been a sizzling amalgam of murderous-sounding influences.

In many ways, Paranoid’s latest blistering EP, S.C.U.M., feels like a tribute to their original inspirations. The EP features Japanese guest musicians on three tracks (Statuszero – ‘noise design’ on “体系的苦悩”, Jacky Crustwar – vocals on “裏切り”, and Sakana – backing vocals on “無差別な苦痛”) and, fittingly, S.C.U.M. blazes with the intensity of subterranean Japanese hardcore. The EP is stacked with concussive drums, skin-flaying guitars, and incinerating howls and shrieks. At points, S.C.U.M. hits like Framtid brawling with noise-shredders Kriegshög or D-clone. At other times, Paranoid’s Dis-charged/Anti Cimex-ed kång tears into max-fuzz crasher crust. Overall, the vortex-like mayhem swirls like a cyclone of noise one minute and batters like a headbanging hurricane the next.

I’m marking S.C.U.M. down as one of Paranoid’s best releases, with its Nippon noise-worthy brutality being its most vital attribute. S.C.U.M. is ugly as a bloodbath and disturbingly captivating, reaffirming Paranoid’s gift for producing bleeding-raw punk that’s hideous yet compelling.

(Not Enough Records, Beach Impediment Records)

Death Crusade – Znow Płonie Niebo

The sophomore album from the Polish band Death Crusade, Znow Płonie Niebo, comes highly recommended, doubly so if you’re a fan of god-tier crusties Filth of Mankind. Death Crusade includes a couple of members from the Gdańsk-based Filth of Mankind, and while Filth of Mankind’s discography is tiny, their influence has had an outsized impact on an ever-growing list of doomsday crust titans.

Note: Filth of Mankind’s sole LP, The Final Chapter, is a stone-cold classic. (It’s also due for reissue sometime this year – hooray!) If you haven’t sampled The Final Chapter‘s dark delights already, consider it mandatory listening to earn your official crust club badge.

Like Filth of Mankind, Death Crusade deal in all things ominous and cataclysmic. The band’s music features a blend of downbeat crust and downtuned death metal, with grinding heaviness being the critical component. Tracks like “Szary”, “Izolacja”, “Szczujnia”, and “Lęk” are absolute world-eaters filled with dense and destructive instrumentation and nuclear-tipped riffs. Metal and punk play equally crucial roles here, with breakneck d-beat, blastbeats, and deathly growls working together to deliver a hailstorm of stentorian noise.

Znow Płonie Niebo ends with the album’s title track being more of a gentle stroll than an outright onslaught – Death Crusade easing off the gas for much-needed rest after a raging storm. Znow Płonie Niebo is pitch-perfect for fans of stampeding metalpunk. FYI, the gatefold LP version of Znow Płonie Niebo looks mint, too.

One further note: Death Crusade also have a split 7″ available on their Bandcamp page, featuring Finnish blackened crust band Dispyt. The EP is also a thoroughly bruising encounter.

(Nieroby Records, Throne Of Lies Records, Deviance, Helldog Records, DIY Koło, Hidden Beauty)

Myconid – Demo 2023

No disrespect to the rest of the bands included in this month’s demo section below, but sometimes a debut recording is so astonishingly good I want to place it higher on the list. That’s definitely the case with Myconid’s Demo 2023, which is a tour de (fucking) force.

The first demo from the Portland, Oregon, stench-crust crew is spine-crushingly heavy. Demo 2023 features sizzling and slithering solos – and plenty of grunts and growls from the bowels of Hell – but the wall-of-steel production here is hugely impressive for a release with the word ‘demo’ in its title. I saw a note on Reddit suggesting Myconid features former members of Hellshock, Isotope, and Lockheed. I don’t know how accurate that intel is, but if it’s true, it would certainly explain how Myconid have managed to hit a phenomenal home run straight out of the gate.

There is a pantheon of stench-crust bands who specialize in bringing withering levels of heaviness and suffocating levels of darkness to the table. You can add Myconid’s name to that list. Demo 2023 is a planet-pulverizing beast that seriously raises expectations for Myconid’s next move. The band’s initial incursion is a triumph. Someone release this on vinyl, please!

Sacrificial Decay – Obliteration Rites

Fucking Portland, it never ends! PDX duo Sacrificial Decay describe their heavyweight technique as “DEATH-BEAT”. That’s a full-caps name for a full-caps sound, and Sacrificial Decay’s Obliteration Rites EP duly features barbaric crust that syphons plenty of its noisome grit from death metal’s arsenal. Sacrificial Decay aren’t afraid to go long-form either, with songs like “Vengeance”, “Skullsplitter”, and “Shit Life (Gripped by Fear)” stretching beyond the usual 90-second bursts of crustcore to really hammer their catastrophic tonnage home. Kudos to Col (drums, lyrics, backing vocals), Matt (guitar, bass, vocals), and Seanan Mccullough, who recorded the band at Portland’s Helvete Sound Studio. Obliteration Rites is a full-force blast of demolishing punk. Super-heavy… in every sense.


Disaffect / Sanctus Iuda – Fuck All Borders

Providence, Rhode Island label Armageddon has had a great year thus far, releasing Bastard Noise’s recent Incineration Prayer – Self Righteous Suicide album, reissuing OG thrashers Hirax’s essential Raging Violence and Hate, Fear And Power LPs, and vomiting forth the ‘primitive grinding death metal’ heard on Exploding Corpse Action’s Inter-Dimensional Annihilation: Complete Transmissions 1995-1997 compilation.

(I recommend all four releases. But that Exploding Corpse Action comp – “auditory atrocities and aural abominations… from the cold extremities of an unknown dimension beyond space and time” – is a very tasty blast of cosmic horror.)

Also on offer from Armageddon is a recent split release from veteran anarcho punk bands Disaffect and Sanctus Iuda. Disaffect formed in Scotland in the early 90s, only to implode a few years later. The band’s demise resulted in the birth of a couple of notable groups, including the much-loved Scatha. Disaffect reformed a few years ago, and Fuck All Borders is the band’s second release in as many years. Disaffect tick all of the instantly-recognizable anarcho punk boxes, with tracks like “Into The Darkness”, “Keep It Political”, and “Profit From Pain” featuring choppy riffs, fist-pumping bass, and dual (spitting) vocals. Expect plenty of hooks and even more politically-charged momentum.

Sanctus Iuda have been lurking about since the mid-90s, and the band’s hot-tempered anarchist punk has a heavier and often crustier accent than Disaffect. Sanctus Iuda’s contributions to Fuck All Borders feature caustic vocals and lacerating guitars, with the band leaning hard on the strengths of raw hardcore. For a group closing in on 30 years of service, Sanctus Iuda still sound full of fire, vim, and vigour. Credit where credit’s due; it takes substantial mental effort to remain fixed on progress after decades of regressive political disasters. Kudos to Disaffect and Sanctus Iuda for continuing to fight the good fight.

(Armageddon Label)

Nukelickers / Bipolar – Death by Desperation

The latest batch of audio terror from Italian label Sistema Mortal is:
(a) a split release featuring Nukelickers and Bipolar
(b) Sistema Mortal’s first 7″ release
(c) a co-release with recommended Australian label Fuzzed Atrocities
(d) likely to induce nausea, disturbed vision, and cognitive dysfunction

Unsurprisingly, given Sistema Mortal and Fuzzed Atrocities’ preference for working with bands who worship War Cry, Why, and Visions Of War, Nukelickers and Bipolar’s ultra-primitive split, Death by Desperation, is another noise for noise’s sake adventure built on ear-bleeding foundations. Nukelickers is a one-person project helmed by multi-instrumentalist Julio (one-half of the similarly accented raw punk outfit Visions of Chaos). Like Nukelickers’ previous work, the band’s four songs here are astringent enough to strip the paint off a battleship. That causticity is matched by four-piece Bipolar’s contributions, which are also awash with noise-corroded instrumentation. Expect a double dose of contaminated d-beat where niceties and melodies are shunted aside, and Kawakami-levels of disorder and disarray are enthusiastically embraced. Shitnoise ahoy!

(Sistema Mortal, Fuzzed Atrocities)

Ignorance – S/T

Recently, Finland was voted the happiest nation in the world for the sixth year running, but someone clearly forgot to tell Helsinki band Ignorance. The group sound angry – real angry – but maybe that’s the secret. Purging the bile or draining the pus out makes us happier overall, right? In any case, Ignorance have pointed to groups like Confuse, Kriegshög, Lebenden Toten and Gauze as significant influences on their self-titled 7″. You can hear those bands boiling away in the background, even if Ignorance’s music isn’t a wall of noise like Lebenden Toten’s. What links Ignorance to those bands above most is that they all sound utterly feral yet display real finesse. Ignorance’s 7″ features plenty of concussive punk, but buried within are brilliant ideas that guarantee you’ll want to make a return visit and dig deeper into Ignorance’s sound. More smashing Suomi noise!

(Iron Lung Records)

Cluster Bomb Unit – Abgesang

Cluster Bomb Unit formed in Stuttgart, Germany, in 1989, which means the band’s been making a hellish racket for 34 years. That’s what you call dedication to the cause. Cluster Bomb Unit has yet to sell out their original vision or toy with the idea of artistic progression. But that’s not been a problem at all. Cluster Bomb Unit have toured the world, playing in basements, lounge rooms, and ramshackle venues aplenty.

Cluster Bomb Unit’s recent Abgesang LP is only their second full-length release. (Following on from Die Stationen Von Cluster Bomb Unit, released by Tokyo Label Tribal War Asia back in 2001.) Cluster Bomb Unit have been more prolific when it comes to split and EP releases, and Abgesang sounds much the same as every other ear-bleeding record in Cluster Bomb Unit’s discography. Thrashing d-beat and raw hardcore follow a tried and true squat punk recipe, and while Cluster Bomb Unit’s old-school crust is lo-fi in tone, it’s hi-fi in temper. Three (and a bit) decades of shitnoise, don’t you ever change. FFO Sore Throat, E.N.T, and Discharge, etc.

(Power it Up)

Slogutis – S/T
Resplandor – S/T

Montreal, Québec label Runstate Tapes is a go-to source of quality noise — a point the recent releases from Canadian band Slogutis and Mexico City’s Resplandor confirm.

Slogutis are touted as embodying the ‘essence of evil and darkness’. Said sinisterness is supposedly channelled via the band’s ‘haunting melodies and eerie vibes’. The truth is, Slogutis’ 7-song debut supersedes both those claims. The band’s self-titled release is a weird and insidious horrorshow, with eldritch songs tunnelling their way under your skin. Creepy-as-hell vocals and spine-chilling riffs frame a blood-curdling ambience. FFO sorcerers, demons, vampires, and ghouls.

In some ways, Resplandor remind me of fellow Mexico City band Ojo Por Ojo (one of my favourite Latino hardcore groups). Like Ojo Por Ojo, the intensity of Resplandor’s music transcends language barriers. The band’s self-titled debut thrums with high-energy hardcore that effortlessly evokes the challenges and tensions that arise from Mexico City’s crime, corruption, and violence. Resplandor’s vocalist howls her goddamn heart out throughout, and the eight tracks here are as fierce as a blast furnace, driven by raw distortion and red-raw rage.

(Runstate Tapes)

The Western Nightmare Continues

Squander’s The Western Nightmare Continues…EP features nine minutes of bludgeoning d-beat that tips its hat to the old guard while sounding jam-packed with up-to-the-minute ordnance. The Canadian four-piece features ex-members of a host of outfits, including the all-killer Napalm Raid, and while Squander frames their inspirations as “Anarcho/D-Beat/UK82/Crust”, what you mostly hear on The Western Nightmare Continues…is Discharge’s battering ram influence being further honed and put to wicked use. Squander’s first release, 2022’s War Crimes EP, was a solid start. The Western Nightmare Continues…is punchier, grimier, and heavier, promising great things to come.


Consec – Wheel of Pain

They say you should never judge a book by its cover, but that’s terrible advice. Sure, it’s not a full-proof system (by any means), but judge away, brothers and sisters, you’ll be bang on plenty of times. Just take a look-see at the cover of Athens, Georgia band Consec’s Wheel of Pain, for example. That 80s-esque cover art perfectly captures what you’ll find within. Consummate hardcore is the deal here. Percussive tracks with plenty of divebombing riffs keep Wheel of Pain on the boil. Picture a hammer smashing down on a fingernail. And again. And again. And again. Ka-boom – that’s Wheel of Pain.

(Not For The Weak Records)

Muro – En Vivo En El Festival Asfixia Benefit
Sycophant – Subject To Pain

I watched a YouTube video this morning showing 50 tiger sharks eviscerating a whale’s corpse (circle of life, amigos), and that’s an excellent visual representation of what listening to Colombia punk band Muro feels like. The Bogotá group’s En Vivo En El Festival Asfixia Benefit live set is a firm reminder of why Muro are rightly considered one of the most potent live bands. En Vivo En El Festival Asfixia Benefit sees Muro embracing chaos and pouring everything into their set. Passion and aggression ignite on every track, but as label Total Peace points out, the key to Muro’s brilliance is that they sound so off-the-chain and primal and yet they’re so forward-thinking, too. Muro’s hard-as-nails hardcore is always an empowering feast.

While we’re here, let’s take a gander at another release from Arizona label Total Peace. It’s been a couple of years since Phoenix band Sycophant’s Innate Control debut, and much like their first release, the group’s Subject To Pain EP plucks from various strains of the Scandi hardcore (d-takt, käng, råpunk, you know the score). The difference between Sycophant’s debut and Subject To Pain is that the latter has more swing. Subject To Pain is a total blast of ultra-violence, but for all the EP’s rail-gun rage, Subject To Pain still dangles a few irresistible hooks.

(Total Peace)

Kläpträp – Songs about Wrongs

Kläpträp (accurately) describe themselves as “drinkers, thinkers, and stinkers”. The German/UK band – Ruhrpott/Halifax, to be exact – are sure to catch the ear of the great unwashed because Kläpträp features a couple of members from crust kingpins Doom and Visions of War. Kläpträp’s raucous debut, Songs about Wrongs, was recorded rough and ready, with the album’s 12 tracks wrapping anarcho-punk around road-rash-raw crustcore. Shouts and screams from singer Anita, and bassist and vocalist Faxe, cut through the scummy noise as drummer Stick and guitarist Stef dish out battering percussion and razor-wire riffs, respectively. Everything here is filthy enough to leave an indelible skid mark. If you’re a fan of putrid, drunken punk, then Songs About Wrongs will be right up your garbage-strewn alley.


War Effort – Path to Glory

The origin story of Chicago, Illinois band War Effort goes something like this: four guys (from a bunch of bands you probably know) got together to see if they could write and record a hardcore EP in a single day. That idea resulted in War Effort’s self-titled 2022 demo, which drew plenty of praise for its gut-driven energy. The band’s new EP is even better. Path to Glory is heavier, gnarlier, and even more of an in-your-face brawl. Tracks like “Back on the Table”, “Time Loop”, and “What’s Your Ballot Done for You?” are absolute bruisers, delivering powerhouse catharsis as our hopes and dreams collapse around us. Lives are being ground to dust as hyper-capitalism grows ever more insatiable. But here come War Effort, with fists raised high, cutting to the core of what makes knockout hardcore such a crucial weapon in our emotional armouries.

(Warthog Speak Records)

Kasshuve – Dummedagen kommer

Swedish band Kasshuve’s debut 7″, 2020’s Grisablod, was released by the always interesting Danish label Adult Crash Records. Kasshuve’s first LP, Dummedagen Kommer, is being released by three labels – Kink Records, La Familia, and Metadona Records – and it’s easy to see why the trio of backers wanted to get involved. Kasshuve’s free-for-all råpunk is urgent and ill-mannered, but also imbued with a lot of fun. The band’s sound is thoroughly old-school – picture Uncurbed covering Disarm’s Dömd EP or Mob 47’s Hardcore Attack – and Dummedagen Kommer‘s lo-fi buzz and fuzz remain sizzling throughout. Gruff vocals, scratchy guitars, and thumping bass and drums provide all you want and all you need in a crude and crusty raw punk release. (See also: Dummedagen Kommer‘s on-point cover art from Kasshuve’s bassist and singer, Erik.)

(Kink Records, La Familia, Metadona Records)

Romansy – Green Killer

Australian band Romansy’s 2022 debut, Doves Of Peace And War, sounded like a long-lost demo discovered in an aging hardcore enthusiast’s basement – or in the depths of a serial murderer’s den (the latter, more likely.) Romansy’s recent Green Killer EP also follows a strange and sinister course where evil permeates as much as weirdness saturates. Gruesomely raw black metal and shit-fi noise are slathered over off-kilter hardcore, and the result resembles United Mutation, G.I.S.M, and Ildjarn doing shrooms in a sweat-soaked basement. Romansy’s music is deranged and disquieting. Perfect for fans of horrible-sounding obscurities.

(Wintergarden Records)

Lethal – Lethal’s Hardcore Hit Parade

Book a physiotherapy appointment before you hit play on New York City band Lethal’s latest release, Lethal’s Hardcore Hit Parade, because the EP will wreck your neck. Lethal released a thundering demo a few years back that didn’t get enough attention. But I doubt Lethal’s Hardcore Hit Parade will suffer a similar fate. Classic boombox HC rings loud on the five tracks here, with Lethal’s bass-heavy propulsion and metal-strength riffs firing on all cylinders. Even better, that’s only the starting point for Lethal’s assaultive adventures. There’s a rank stench of the sewers here too, and far more crustiness and abrasiveness than stock-standard hardcore. An excellent mix of chest-pounding action and subterranean slaughter.

(11 PM Records)

Shizan 死産 – 10 Minutes Of Noise Shock Therapy

The world’s in meltdown mode, but pockets of brave resistance refuse to die. Shizan 死産 call Minsk, Belarus home, which I imagine is a reasonably spicy place to be a punk band at this point in time. Shizan 死産’s bass-rumbling and guitar-shrieking crasher crust is über-raw and über-noisy. The band’s 10 Minutes Of Noise Shock Therapy is just that – 600 seconds of electroconvulsive chaos that’ll disorientate and, if you’re lucky, maybe even reorientate your thinking. All the blown-out action here makes for uneasy listening, a definite plus for those looking for masochistic thrills. Stock up on codeine; a cluster headache awaits. Great (and grisly-sounding) stuff.

(Future Gloom, Defect Punks)

The Domestics – East Anglian Hardcore

East Anglian Hardcore is the first full-length release from UK band The Domestics since their Cherry Blossom Life LP back in 2017. Fans who’ve patiently waited for the band’s next step won’t be disappointed. If anything, East Anglian Hardcore is The Domestics’ most furious LP yet. The band explore issues like domestic violence, mental health, the daily grind, and myriad socio-political inequities and injustices. As grim as things get, though, vocalist James Domestic’s gravelly singing ensures blistering songs like “Purchases”, “Burnt out”, and “Cash Gag” feature catchy choruses that’ll hook the shout-along crowd. Best of all, while East Anglian Hardcore features tougher riffs than ever, there’s no roid-rage hardcore here. Once again, The Domestics sound fired up with righteous fury.

(Kibou Records, TNS Records, Kangaroo Records, Cimex Records)

Mess of Mankind – DISxCO

Mess of Mankind are a feminist hardcore band from Nuremberg, Germany, and they don’t waste anyone’s time with oblique or subtextual messaging. The band’s DISxCO EP launches a direct audio attack with its first fiery track, “Awake”, then ends the bombardment six songs later with the equally fierce “Tote zählen”. Mess of Mankind’s breathless music draws from all quarters; d-beat, blackened hardcore, heavyweight crust, and bouts of grind-level percussion. The group go all in – instrumentally and lyrically – on rabble-rousing tracks imbued with meaning. For all the band’s ferocity, though, Mess of Mankind hope for a gentler world. Make noise, not war; you know the score.

*Thanks to my Last Rites comrade-in-arms, Andrew Edmunds, for alerting me to Mess of Mankind’s debut.

(Grindwar Records)

Coke Rodent – From The Pantheon of Failed Endeavours

Birmingham, UK, four-piece Coke Rodent fall into the hardcore genus, but species-wise, the band pluck from plenty of crossover subsets. The band’s From The Pantheon of Failed Endeavours album features tracks like “Withered”, “Completely Destroyed”, “Bleak Hell,” and “Perish & Cleanse”, which, unsurprisingly, are all very grim hymns. The best track here, “Repulsion,” is a great example of Coke Rodent’s volatile creativity; a little grind here, a touch of death metal there, throw some crusty d-beat on the pile, and then piss-blast the result with corrosive black metal. See within for more horrible happenings.

(F H E D)

Feed – S/T

Montreal, Québec trio Feed* describe their music as “anti-fascist sci-fi fantasy metalpunk”. In other words, the band explore injustice, bigotry and dystopia-level oppression via escapist tales. Sound fun? It is. Who doesn’t love grimdark stories full of cybernetic overlords, vengeful witches, and mechanical saviours – or how about a dark fortress toppled by heroic serfs? A murderous mix of musical subgenres underscores Feed’s allegorical tales, with grind-speed thrash hacking a chunk out of OSDM, and there’s plenty of crust to satisfy filthy punks. It’s all super-nerdy noise, of course. But then, anyone reading this is probably a giant fuckin’ nerd anyway – I know I am! Recorded and mixed by Patrick McDowall at Black Gate Studio, and mastered by Mr Joel Grind, Feed’s EP packs a Kaiju-sized punch.

*Cheers for the email, crüe.


Overgrown Throne – Captured Alive

Overgrown Throne’s Captured Alive album was recorded off-the-floor by Stacy Harden at The Haw River Ballroom in April this year. The North Carolina d-beat band’s 10-song release duly buzzes with live dynamism as distortion gnaws at Overgrown Throne’s sound. So far, so good. But what makes Captured Alive is Overgrown Throne’s singer, Nikki, whose barks, growls, and throat-shredding howls often have a more idiosyncratic accent than conventional hardcore vocals. Add in class war anger and firebrand commentary, and you have an album packed with amp-melting energy. Overgrown Throne strike like a rattlesnake. “Nature has reclaimed the throne (A)” – fvk, yeah.

*Thanks to ‘CM’ for leaving a comment on last month’s edition of ICWT that pointed me towards Overgrown Throne.


Demolishing Demos

Below are a bunch of demos that caught my tinnitus-ravaged ear recently. I’ve kept the blurbs short ‘n’ sweet, so I can cram in a little more noise. Thanks for visiting ICWT. Fingers crossed, I’ll see you next month. Be excellent to one another.

Suffocating Madness – Promo Tape

Promo <–> demo, demo <–> promo, let’s not fight about definitions when there’s howling noise to enjoy. New York’s Suffocating Madness have released a teaser for their upcoming full-length, which is due out soon via Toxic State Records. The band’s riotous promo features four covers that provide an excellent summation of Suffocating Madness’ influences: “Out Of Sight” (Final Warning), “Progress” (Flux Of Pink Indians), “How, When, Where” (Crucifix), and “I’m An Upstart” (Angelic Upstarts). Throw in Discharge and Antisect, and that’s Suffocating Madness’ stampeding hardcore in a nutshell. I should also point out that the band’s original tracks here – “Pressure” and “Burn” – are phenomenal. I look forward to having my mind crushed by Suffocating Madness’ first LP.


Adixiøn –Vivir Como Muerto

NYC trio Adixiøn explore the global and personal harm of addiction on their Vivir Como Muerto demo. The band’s raw mix of stenchcore, d-beat, and scabrous hardcore is grottier than a gutter punk’s undies, and Vivir Como Muerto shows much promise. Here’s to Adixiøn’s next move.


Asinin –Demo

New York label RoachLeg Records is releasing Norwegian band Asinin’s Demo, so discovering the 5-song debut strips skin from bone is unsurprising. Expect a caustic mix of scorching and squalid punk.

(RoachLeg Records)

Demon –Demonstration

How about another RoachLeg Records ripper? Demon’s Demonstration cassette sounds like the Wipers on Quaaludes before the dank, no-fi nightmare/demo bursts into action late in the piece. Demonstration is seriously fucked-up – gloriously so. Ultra-crude genius.

(RoachLeg Records)

Disrobe – Future Of Ashes Demo

According to Catfish Jones, the creator-in-chief of Disrobe’s Future Of Ashes Demo, the recording features “no riffs, no recording continuity, no perfect takes, just one-man raw PUNK”. I can happily confirm the Portland band’s demo is an in-your-face blast of primitive crust with catacomb vocals and brain-drilling instrumentation.


Snake – Demo ’23

Dublin, Ireland band Snake deliver queer-powered noise punk that hisses and roars as blown-out chaos erupts in the heart of the storm. Songs stop, start, collapse, and reform in real time. Great stuff.


Inflicted – Demo #2

Inflicted’s Demo #2 is the Washington, D.C. band’s second release for the year. Like their first demo, Demo #2 is a four-track-raw blast of zero-bullshit hardcore. Covers of Thought Control and Pain Directive underscore Inflicted’s brutal line of attack. Hard-as ‘ardcore.


MDOP – Demo 2023

Michigan trio MDOP (Malicious Destruction Of Property) brew a boiling mix of metal-edged hardcore and volatile powerviolence. MDOP’s Demo 2023 is an onslaught. Nailgun meets kneecap. A right fuckin’ neck-stomper.


Posted by Craig Hayes

Old man from Aotearoa New Zealand. I write about dadcrust for d-beat dorks, raw punk nerds, and metal dweebs.

  1. Thanks for the shout out and really nice words for Overgrown Throne. Hope everyone checks ‘em out!


    1. You’re welcome. Thanks for letting me know about the band!


  2. Thanks for the awesome words and putting us out there! We appreciate it!!


    1. You’re welcome. Thanks for the thanks!


  3. Great work my friend! I’m still picking my way through Vol 27 (your Aotearoa spotlight was cool btw). As always thanks for doing PDX right. My beloved city is like an easy bake oven for filthy music:)


    1. Cheers, brother. As always, thanks for stopping by and sampling the noise salad. Plenty of tasty delights in this month’s column. Enjoy the feast!


  4. I love this column. I always find some killer new stuff. Is there anything in the vein of Stormcrow/Sanctum/early Bolt Thrower?


    1. Kia ora, Adam. This month, Swordwielder, Death Crusade, Myconid, Sacrificial Decay, and Squander are the bands who are probably closest to the Stormcrow/Sanctum school of heavyweight stench/crust. Thanks a bunch for checking the column out!


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