This time I'll start off with a record top ten of the past decade that was originally intented to be included in the 4th issue of No Exit 'zine. The following records have inspired me in so many ways during the years and are also landmarks of good times shared with friends. In no way I want you to think that these are the "best" records released within the decade,there were thousands more that have been missed/skipped and deserve their place in the punk rock hall of fame...so,that means that if you have a top ten of the decade that you'd like to share please do so! I'd more than happy to post them here.
That said here we go.....
10. Protestant-The Hate.The Hollow CD
It rarely happens a band to get in touch and send their record for review in this 'zine and to be honest I mostly get very mediocre stuff but this was an exception! It was a gloomy morning when I got it in the mailbox and because I hadn't heard any new music for some days I decided to give it a listen right away along with a cup of coffee,it blew me off from the first song! It was like they took all my emotions and feelings in that period and turned them to music! You have to read the lyrics to get the picture!
Great band,great people,awesome fuckin' record!
9. Totalitar-Vi Ar Eliten LP
This was the last record from these Swedish hc veterans and once again they proved that old-school hc will not die anytime soon.The power,energy and noise is still there,lyrics against the ruling classes and the state of capitalism spit in your face in true hc fashion! Be sure to check it out!
8. Hibernation-Into The Silence Of Internal Sorrow LP
Hibernation are the best old-school crust band out of Greece in humble opinion and they proved it with this killer lp.If you're a fan of the following bands then you should definitely get this record: Amebix,Detestation,Antischism,Hellbastard,
Nausea etc. Old-school crust punk,the way it should be!
7. Disclose/World Burns To Death-split 7"
This is as raw as it gets! Noise D-beat destruction from Disclose that bomb your head from the opening track: "Just Another Warsystem" plus the ultra raw World Burns To Death that deliver two of their best songs! Have you heard a better guitar riff from the one on "Children Gone To Shadow"? Even Darkthrone must be jealous of it!!! R.I.P Kawakami
6. Tear It Up-Taking You Down With Me CD
Does anyone remember the term "thrashcore" anymore? There were tons of band playing this style in 2003-2004 but suddenly one day they all disapeared! Anyway this is the last record from Tear It Up and it was the perfect way to end it! Black Flag worship to the max but played in 72 rpm! Fast,short and punishing old-school hc with a lot of negative attitude,just how it's supposed to be!
5. The Now-Denial-Viva Viva Threatening LP
I believe that this record put German hc back on the map of the global hc/punk scene upon its release! Lyrics full of venomous poison and powerfull music made me play this record till today and scream along to the words! It was a breath of fresh air,something not a lot of bands can be proud of! "Obey,adapt,shut up and fuckin' die!"
4. Burial-s/t LP
Still to this day you can't go wrong with these German japanese hardcore lovers! Aggresive,raw yet melodic hc/punk that makes you wanna circle pit in a basement full of sweat,piss and smoke along with your mad friends! That's punk fuckin' rock!
Also one of the best live acts I've witnessed!
3. Propagandhi-Today's Empires,Tomorrow's Ashes CD
They were the first non-greek punk band I got see live back in 2003 and this is where I got the cd from.When I went back home after the show I gave it listen and it instantly became a keeper. The lyrics on the songs are totally thought provoking and it's like reading a well written history book! As for the music I believe this is their best stuff ,fast hc/punk with complex song structures.No filler,all killer!
2. Tragedy-Vengeance LP
It was by the end of 2003 if I remember correctly and I walk in a small record store I used to hang out every saturday morning and I find my good old friend and former bandmate D-Bill checking some new records that had just arrived.He was holding this record and he insisted that I should give it a listen.I was listening to a lot of hardcore at the time and he told me that I was gonna like this one.As soon as "Conflicting Ideas" kicked in I was blown away! Since then this record has never left my turntable and there's no sign to do so in the years to come.Need to say more?
1. No Hope For The Kids-s/t LP
Undeniably the best punk rock record released the past decade! The first time I heard and read the lyrics I was stunned! It was like the songs were written for me!
All the feelings and thoughts I was having at the time were blasting through the speakers,songs about boredom,misery,hopelessness and teenage angst,the music for my fuckin' generation! Just read the lyrics from the self-titled track: "Since 1998 I've been drinking/my face was full of zits/I was stuck in a room/ and I was thinking/there's no hope for the kids/Five years gone by/and I'm still drinking/my faces' stil of zits/I'm stuck here in the same room/and I'm still thinking/there's no hope for the kids"
Moving on with some record/'zine reviews as usual...
Doom released the "U.S.A Tour" ep some time ago in support of their u.s tour (duh!) and I'm proud to say that it's fucking awesome! Four killer tracks in the vein of old Doom stuff but also mixing it with the likes of Extreme Noise Terror,Aus-Rotten and Napalm Death. The lyrics are about freedom of speech (the loss of it actually),economic/political suppresion,brainwashing and fascism,yeah it sounds what you'd expect from a band like Doom but this time they're more in depth and thought provoking. Don't know if this ep is still available but you can always try,fans of old-school crust/hc will love it.
Teargas are a band that hold a special place in my heart because their demo was the very first release on my label Scull Crasher about 3 years ago and I'm stoked that not only they kept playing but they managed to produce some great hc in the vein of "Burning Spirits" bands (aka Deathside,Lip Cream,Judgement etc) and even have an extensive u.s tour this year including a show in the Chaos In Tejas fest. Keep it up guys! Ok,let's move on to the music department now,Teargas hail from Australia and in this lp they deliver a mix of Japcore and old-school crusty/hc. Slighty different from their previous outputs but more "progressive",meaning that they add a more personal touch to their music compared to other bands of the genre. Heavy,well-worked out guitar riffs complete with solos,pounding,steady drumming with lots of double pedal use that add extra heaviness along with the bass and vocals that bring to mind Tragedy but with a more hc edge. Overall a great record from side to side that will please most crust punks out there. Plus,ace artwork that coincides with the bands' aesthetic,what are you waiting for? Go grab your copy!
Fuck yes! A new greek punk 'zine that rocks! Now Here 'zine is the first effort of my dear friend Nemesis Knox ,also responsible for some serious writing on her blog with the same name,make sure to check it in the "friends" links. Usually the first issue of a 'zine is short in content but this one goes beyond the 20 pages mark I'm used to...to be exact it's 100 pages long and the best thing is that you can read it front to back in one sit (or shit if you like to read 'zines in your toilet!). There's lots of writing from contributors (yours truly included) about various subjects ,interviews with My Turn,Black Listed (both bands from Athens,greece) and Bernay's Propaganda,lots of artwork from greek and international artists,extensive 'zine and record reviews both punk and not and random thoughts spread across the pages. To quote a friend: "...best fanzine I've read in years,there's so much to read and there's also diversity to the whole thing making it appealing to almost everyone!". Couldn't agree more with that! For those who care,this issue is limited to 300 copies so act fast.
Upcoming shows/fests in Greece that you shouldn't miss:
Get stoned,watch the video below and come to the show!