Let's all give a nice, welcoming slow-clap to Jay and the Sidetracked crew for finally climbing on the Facebook train and getting a real internet presence. Although I was one of those people that would routinely check up on the actual Sidetracked Blogspot. It would only get updated like, twice a year. But when Jay give's updates, he gives you more then could ever think you'd want. Like hyping 10 in-progress records at once. Sidetracked's virgin posts on the 'Book are several new tracks from a few tent-pole inducing releases. Some stuff that's apparently been in the works for years. As usual, Jay gives us only the littlest taste of what these record's have in store for us. What we've been given so far of the "Escape" EP, a CD release which I believe Jay is releasing himself, is literally only 12 seconds of music. Between two songs. A much rawer recording, reminiscent of the "Wrench" tape, which I dig a lot. The track "Unanswered" has a nice hardcore punk-era Beastie Boys riff. Next to that is a teaser for the stupidly anticipated split 7" with neo-legends, To The Point. This track, "Manipulate" is a much more standard-sounding powerviolence number. Fleshed out with rapid snare rolls and crusty grind riffs. Now with this genre of music, fastcore, it's pretty hard to get the impact of Sidetracked from just a few seconds. But honestly, if you haven't already heard Sidetracked and know what to expect, you should do your homework and listen to "Uniform" and their split with In Disgust asap!. Of course this is only the beginning for Sidetracked in 2015. If you take a look at the sidebar on their Bandcamp page, they've barely even scratched the surface of what they have planned. A new LP on To Live A Lie Records and splits with God's America and Limbs Bin are also in the works. Please give the boys a like HERE .
Discordant grind nuts Noisear are right at the beginning of having an incredible year with a triple stack of new records for 2015. Recently reuniting with founding vocalist Alex Lucero and bassist Joe Tapia, and are in the middle of working on a brand new full length album! And have seemingly finished recording for a split 7" with the mighty Lycanthrophy, which will be released on Bloody Scythe Records. A nice pairing seeing as both bands will be gracing the stages of the annual Maryland Deathfest this year. And if there's a band that can keep up with Bryan Fajardo's drumkit abuse, it's Lycanthrophy. The new track we have here today, "Face First Into Concrete", comes from said split, and it brings that Noisear magic that they've honed to perfection. The wonderful production that they captured on "Subvert The Dominant Paradigm" is recaptured here, in my opinion. Dorian Rainwater's signature guitar skronking is bright and technically flawless, and of course Mr. Fajardo effortlessly lays waste to his drumkit. No word yet on when they Lycanthophy split or the as-of-yet untitled LP will be released. The fabled 3x7" boxest split with The Kill and Antigama is supposed to come out this year too. Very VERY excited to get my hands on that. You can (hopefully) thank Haunted Hotel Records for that beautiful piece of wax. That split was also released on CD by Selfmadegod Records. Listen to the track HERE !
And last but certainly not least we have the triumphant news of a new Gas Chamber EP, and the jaw dropping anthem, "Always Coming Home", to stream in anticipation. A new 7" entitled "Stained Hand", which will be released on SPHC Records. A label I certainly trust to deliver some of highest quality records of hardcore and grinds noisier and weirder side. Proceeding their incredible LP, "Hemorrhaging Light", released on Iron Lung Records last year, "Stained Hand" already has me amazed and feeling feelings I haven't felt about hardcore in a long time. "Always Coming Home" is a near five minute composition of pure brilliance. Opening with Gas Chamber's instrumental body in full jam mode, performing a gorgeous instrumental passage. With some very uplifting and beautiful interplay between the guitar and Patrick Bolger's bass wizardry. Slamming into a driving and powerful d-beat driven second half of more familiar hardcore song structure, and ending in complete satisfying victory. One of the best pieces of music I've heard all year, and definitely my favorite track Gas Chamber has created so far. Carrying the torch of such legendary bands like the Minutemen and Man Is The Bastard, Gas Chamber are the modern powerviolence and hardcore's titans of creative supremacy and integrity. If you haven't been converted yet, you might just be hopeless.
That time of the week to talk about new Suffering Mind songs (I swear do these guys ever sleep?). The split 7" with Milwaukee's shreddiest bass n'drums powerviolence band Lifes is very near it's release. So naturally two songs have been put up on Suffering Mind's end for streaming. "Subtle Manipulation" is a HEAVY short and fast number, that throws in some very nice crazy-man screams at the end. "Failed", the closer, is the real attention grabber. Certainly being one of the bands more, unusual creations. The standard grind fare trailblazes through the opening, and then rides an almost Jesus Lizard discordant note strum on top of some drum rhythm from Daro. It's a cool little left turn from SM, I like hearing the boys give some new tastes. That cover are is tripping me out too, and I love it. Great looking abstract textures. Anyone know who did this? This split will be released on SM's US home Halo Of Flies and Now Records.