sabato 31 maggio 2014

Caught In A Vortex

I've already told you recently that I'm a reborn death metal fanatic. This time I'll talk about an unfuckwithable classic: the Abhorrence "s/t" 7", released back in 1990 by cult label Seraphic Decay. I wish I could say I was into this guys since my metal days in early/mid 90s'. But that would only be a lie. The only finnish "obscure" death metal bands I was familiar with back in that period were Demigod and Convulse. And that's a shame since 16 years old me would have been immediately obsessed by this band. Along with the Demigod demo, this is some of the most putrid death metal ever recorded. In the old school way of course. No boring slam bullshit or useless overproduction. Just pure and dirty old school death metal, played in the european way (which is, in my opinion, better than the american one!).
There are quite a few variant of this record: I'm pretty sure my copy is 2nd press but I've never heard of marbled blue wax. But the best thing is that it comes with a huge seraphic decay ad flyer. Do all copies come with it or I've just been lucky?

domenica 25 maggio 2014

HEADLESS HORSEMEN interview 2003

 Long story short: saw these guys opening for RAMBO in a putrid squat in swiss. Not too impressed by their records but live they ruled. Interview conducted with singer Chris around march '03, originally featured in Perro Maldito#2.

Perro: Let me start asking you something about your name. Why did you choose it? I mean, it’s not the tipical HC name…
Chris: That's one of the reasons we were into calling the band this. It's not that much of a typical cliched HC name and shys away from any preconceptions people might have about the band. A friend suggested it and we thought it was kinda funny so it stuck.
Perro: Your gig in Lausanne has been one of the most energic I’ve ever seen. Are all aussie bands so crazy on stage?
Chris: Like everywhere else, there are some bands that have energy and others that don't. We just really enjoy playing, and being energetic is the only way we know how. I mean we play in a hardcore punk band so raw energy,confrontation and adrenolin is a major part of the live aspect.
Perro: Generally talking, how’s gone your recent tour here in europe? Any funny/ scary stories? We want dectails!!
Chris: The tour was amazing!! There are too many people to thank who made the whole experience such a great one. I'm so glad we made it over because we might not ever get another chance! There are many stories here are a few: Driving between Erfurt and Nurenburg in Germany getting pulled over by the cops and having our bags searched, they were hassling me because I had herbal tea and they thought it was drugs! In paris we played a live radio show and I jumped and smacked myself in the face and chipped three of my teeth! In brussels having a food pasta fight mid-set while we were playing!The night before in Paris the show got shut down by 40 cops! Our friend getting mugged of his passport and wallet in Barcelona!

Perro: Have you noticed some differences between the organization of the aussie and the european scenes? Is the euro scene so well organized as I always hear from foreign people?
Chris: Yes I will say that the touring network in Europe is amazingly organised, much more so than Australia. Even though Austrlia is a massive country geographically there are only 4 or 5 major cities that have active punk scenes. So Europe is on a much larger scale. We also don't have the awesome squats in Australia that you have in Europe so most shows are either in pubs or youth centres with squats being a rare exception. People in Europe are so accomodating and generous. Getting fed before a show is almost unheard of in Australia where as it was considered normal in most European cities we visited, we were all so amazed and greatful of the European hospitality!!

Perro: Your music has a strong 80s’ HC feeling, which is something very popular these days. How do you releate H.H. with the recent “80s’ thrashcore reinassance”? I think you could be easily included on it…
Chris: Yeah I guess we could be placed with that tag. I believe that the 'thrashcore' trend is already on the way out, and something new will replace it. In Australia 80's style hardcore isn't really that popular. Alot of bands are doing the emo/screamo or corporate mosh metal thing. I've always been into fast, no frills hardcore punk.

Perro: You just released a cd that is a sort of discography with all the material you have recorded since now. I’ve noticed a different vocals approach between the two different recording sessions featured. Did you change singer or he just changed vocals style? If this second option is the correct one, why?
Chris: A few people have thought we had to different singers. But for the record I sang on both sessions. Earlier on were fast hardcore punk but with a slightly more power violence feel, my vocals were more high pitched screaming. In the more recent recording Damien (guitar) and dave (bass)
wanted to take the band in a different direction, that being more 'old school' 80's style with a slight rock'n'roll touch , they wanted yelled vocals (rather than screamed)and more melody so I tried to comply with their request. I actually recorded the vocals twice for the newer sessions and we all agreed that the newer style suited the music better.

Perro: Who the hell is the guy on the cd cover? I mean, it reminds me the macho-cowboy version of that asshole called Brad Pitt in the movie “Thelma & Louise”. Why have you used this pic as a cover?
Chris: Hahaha....We have had a lot of comments about the cover! Basically we wanted to have a bit of a homo-erotic theme to the CD because we thought it portrayed our band quite well! Rock and roll is oozeing with sexual energy and much of that energy can be interpreted as homoeroticism! You have to admit he does look quite delicious!

Perro: How would you describe H.H. with only 5 words?

Chris: Fast fun, not too serious

Perro: Into Downsided’zine #6 there’s a good article about aussie HC style, described as hellish as the land itself. Do you agree with that? Does it really exist something that can be called in this way? How would you describe aussie HC style?
Chris: I would love to read the article in that zine it sounds very interesting! Personally I don't believe this actual Australian hardcore style exists. I just hope that most bands from Australia don't get too caught up in trying to emulate US hardcore bands because that can get very boring fast! I do think that what's good about Austrlain bands is that they can't be pigeon holed that easily because they take influence from many style of hardcore punk.

Perro: Since aussie scene is not very well-known here, are there any bands worth to check out you’d like to suggest us?
Chris: We have had some classic bands in the past. Bands like Arms Reach, Fallout, Price of Silence, MYC ruled during the 1990's. Probably the most crucial ever hardcore band in Australia was Arms Reach. They were around from 1997-2000. They were like Australia's version of Infest a totally amazing band with spot-on politics in my opinion. In more recent times the premier DIY Australian hardcore bands are Far Left Limit, Deadstare, Bjelke-Petersen Youth, Conation, Pure Evil Trio, Stockholm Syndrome and more. People from overseas should definately check out these bands.

Perro: Now let’s go a bit in depth about that strange place you live in, Australia. It seems to be one of the wildest place to live in. Am I right?
Chris: It's funny because people have all these ideas that Australia is this brutal, crazy land where people go around wrestling crocodiles and ride kangaroos and shit. That might happed more in the outback but the majority of the population in large cities like in Europe. I guess shows like Mad Max and the Crocodile Hunter haven't done much to change people's stereotypes. We definatley are quite isolated from the rest of the world. But I do enjoy living here.

Perro: An aussie guy who lived in europe for a couple of years told me he was very irritated by the fact that there’s no space without people here. Do you agree? What differences have you noticed?
Chris: Australia is quite sparcely populated compared to the rest of the world. We have a population of under 20 million in a country larger than the UK and most of western Europe added together! I never had a problem with that in my travels. But maybe it would be diffent if I walked around Tokyo, Mexico City or Bombay! The tube/underground train in London was a pretty intense and crazy crowded place!!

Perro: Australia is also well known for having a big quantity/ quality of particular animals. Even if the man is definitely the most dangerous one, are you more scared by the big ones or by small and venomous insects or snakes? I’m asking that ‘coz my biggest fear is to be eaten by one of those enormous sharks you have downunder…
Chris: When I was about 10 I was at the beach and everyone was order to get out of the water because there was a huge shark lurking around, that was kind of a freakout! My main fear is spiders, I definately have Arachnophobia. Snakes don't bother me at all.

Perro: Ok, now let me ask you something more serious now. We are going to have an article about the stolen generation into this issue. How’s the actual situation of the aborigens?
Chris: Our Prime Minister John Howard(fascist motherfucker!)still stubbornly refuses to acknowledge the pain and suffering caused by the affects of the stolen generation. This was used as a form of cultural genocide! Sadly the indigenous people of Australia are still on a whole treated as 2nd class citizens. They are marginalised to the outskirts of white society with many living in almost 3rd world poverty conditions. Thus causing high suicide rates, lower life expectancy, higher infant mortality rates and a much higher rate of blacks incarcerated than the rest of the population. When I think about these things I feel ashamed to be white.

Perro: While there are a lot of people into the so called “scene” who think the technology is evil I do think it’s useful and that it’s the way governments/ multinationals use it that could be defined “evil”. What do you think about that?
Chris: I hate the way technology constantly needs to update itself thus ensuring that the lastest model of whatever machine becomes obsolete every six months, Just so mankind can be that little bit lazier and the machine can work for us that little bit faster. Also the way that governments/ corporations use technology to monitor the general public and have access to their personal details and information is very evil. On the other hand I wouldn't be talking to you now so quickly and efficiently if it wasn't for technology. There needs to be a healthy balance.

Perro: Well, it’s time to conclude. Tell us about your project for the future and conclude as you like.
Chris: I'm not really sure about the future of Headless Horsemen right now. I think we are gonna take some time off for a little while. We just had a new seven inch come out on gash records if you are interested. Thanks for the interview Raffa, it was rad fun!! Thanks again to everyone who helped out with the tour, you know who you all are. We love you all!!

sabato 3 maggio 2014


Hardcore/punk has become something safe and predictable. Just another youth subculture. You only have to choose your favourite taste (be it youth crew, d-beat or fastcore ecc...), wear the right uniform, conform to the rules and voilà, you're a hardcore kid now. Then you form a band with your peers. I think the last band that was totally innovative but still 100% hardcore was Man Is The Bastards and that happened more than 20 years ago. New bands just follow blindly the rules written 30+ years ago. Not only musically, but also aesthetically and ideologically. Some do it better than other of course, but you can easily predict the style of a band by just looking at their logo or artwork. The thing that scares the shit out of me is reading a band interview and knowing exactly how they are gonna answer to the same boring questions even before reading it. Of course I still love my meat & potato hardcore, but you have to admit that since the 00s' started, hardcore has become just a mere repetition of itself. Safe & predictable, indeed. So a band like Gutter Gods, that has consciously chosen to break all these rules and do its own thing, is more than welcome.    
Fronted by the controversial Reckless Aggression singer, this time Meatdog couldn't be backed up by a line up more different from him. Instead of a bunch of sxe skins, this time he's surrounded by  skinny weirdos that have probably spent a good portion of their life doing drugs. Such a strange line up brings diversity and indeed the final result couldn't be more unique. Add some hallucinated perversion to Darvocets, an amazing guitar sounds that reminded me immediately my country mate Fogna (ie dark/goth & post punk influences), midpaced hardcore songs with a huge aussie kbd vibe, some harsh noise and you'll get a vague clue about how Gutter Gods debut full length "innersense" sounds like. For sure a breeze of fresh air in an otherwise stagnant and boring scene. The perfect soundtrack for your worst badtrip ever. Record of the year?
Not sure about the pressing number. Released by Cool Death Records, my copy comes on a silver cover that's almost impossible to shoot. I've also seen copies with white cover. Comes with a 12 pages booklet that looks like a more trippy version of the already legendary Groin Gravy 'zine...
Of course it couldn't last for too long. Rumors tell they already broke up. Well, at least there should be a final 7" before they leave this planet to another dimension...