Sunday, December 27, 2009
Wunami are a hardcore influenced instrumental rock band from Southern California. Not to draw comparisons, because they're never fair in these kinds of situations; but think Explosions in the Sky, Russian Circles, If These Trees Could Talk, and you'll have a very general idea.
I've been meaning to post some Wunami stuff since their first demo; but with them setting out on their first little trip (tour) of shows away from home, now seemed like a great time.
What you get here is their first demo "2034", 2 tracks from when the band was still establishing a line-up and finding their place in things. The second demo is their "Pointless" demo which is still available from them in a really nicely silk screened fold over cover of the image you see in this post (with the awesome artwork of Andrew Gomez IV). The Pointless Demo is 3 songs that feature the band starting to hit their stride. Songs that build from quiet to crashing, return to quite and then go on another direction. A typical Wunami song will cross the 10 minute barrier, giving a lot of time for the listener to travel with the band through the soundscapes that they create.
Wunami are heading out December 28th to play around the West Coast for a few days, you can get more info. from their myspace HERE. They also have their newest material posted on their profile; which is planned for an upcoming 12inch Split ep release.
Wunami - Demos (DOWNLOAD)
Additionally, I did a small interview with drummer/guitarist Matt on the eve of their departure for tour. It follows below:
Who's in Wunami?
Wunami is Matthew Gonzales, Eric Ramirez, Juan Pena, and Jordan Pappas.
How did Wunami come to be?
I'm going to try and not make this answer anymore convoluted than it has to be. For the most part, Wunami evolved out of its members long-time friendships. I've literally known Eric since before I can remember, and met Juan soon after that. Jordan I met through my old band Time For Change. I had always played music separately from them, for some odd reason, and somewhere along the line we linked up. There was never any big idea like: "I want to start a band that sounds like this!" or "I want to start a band named this!" Instead, we got together and played what we played--it all just sort of happened. And for the record, the name Wunami has no real meaning. It's an old inside joke that we chose to use because, unlike all of the other cool sounding names we were throwing around, it WAS us.
What influences the band?
Honestly, we create for the sake of creating. I don't see much difference between us writing songs and someone else writing poetry except that, for us, music is the medium. It's all a form of self-expression. It's something I think everyone should do, no matter their own personal skill level, as long as they put their heart (or whatever you want to call it) into it. And in that sense, style becomes irrelevant while Everything (with a capital E) becomes an influence. It's all very literary in both form and function. We try to present something that evokes the aspects, values, and emotions of our lives that, hopefully, others can relate to and find meaning in.
Who am I kidding? The truth is we're driven by our own lingering fears of responsibility. Up tha punx!
Releases so far? Releases in the near future?
We've done two demo's, the second of which has perfect artwork by Andy Gomez and is available on our webstore for 3$ and 1$ at our shows. wunami.bigcartel.com
Also, we've recently recorded a fifteen-minute song that we're going to try and release with the awesome local band Epicose after we get back from tour. It's streaming on our myspace right now. I'll see about getting it up somewhere with better quality. myspace.com/wunami
You guys are heading out on a small tour tomorrow, excited? Nervous? Think it will be different from touring with past bands?
I have no clue how this one is going to go. I don't tend to get very nervous about these sort of things though. We're taking a trailer so hopefully we don't hit any snow. (why did that rhyme?)
What do you guys hope to achieve with the band?
I can't speak for everyone else in the band but, for me, it's hard not to be ambitious about it. I have all the same superficial wants and dreams as everyone else about success and admiration but I try to suppress/ignore them. What I really want is to make better songs--I want a growing experience... Cheesy, I know.
Anything else you'd like to add?
Check out our tour dates and come see us. We're broke! Check out the hand-screened shirts we sell for almost no profit. Available in any size (and color) regardless of what the store says. wunami.bigcartel.com
Also, this might be out of left field but Jon you're a rad dude. The world would be better off with more like you... *high five*
Thanks to Matt & all of Wunami. Check them out on tour & download the demos: Wunami - Demos (DOWNLOAD)
Hailing from Los Angeles, California; Vagary rose out of the Southern California HC scene in 2004/05 playing heavy hardcore with social/political lyrics. Poverty, Racism, Ignorance, Hatred, & being able to better ones' self and combat these things were all themes that ran strongly through Vagary's songs & live shows. Unafraid to speak their minds, singer Cris was vocal about former band Make Move and the motives of the singer as well as outspoken & critical of different mindsets within latino (as they all were) & minority communities that led to the thought that they were always being held down or treated poorly by the ruling class. Often having something to say about still working to rise above that and not use excuses (no matter how true they were) to allow ones' self to just sit and continue to propagate the image of an ignorant, violent, or manipulative minority.
In the download you'll find their original demo consisting of 4 songs & one song, "Kill to Save", from a second & unreleased demo. The first demo is rougher than the band wanted (production wise), but you can hear where they're going and what the live shows were like. Kill to Save has a much better sound and shows the direction the band was continuing in. When someone mentions 90's Revival Hardcore, Vagary comes to mind as one of the ones that was doing it in a style I prefer and better than a lot of others. Big drums that don't sound mechanical, heavy guitars with layering that keeps it interesting, and vocals that are screamed and not barked.
Unfortunately, the band couldn't stabilize and eventually went their different ways. I remember that finding a steady drummer eventually became an issue and shows were more and more infrequent. Oscar (bass) went on to play in Time For A Change for awhile. To the best of my knowledge, the second demo sits mostly unreleased. If anyone has it/talks to any of the Vagary guys, I'd love to have it personally or to post.
Vagary - Demo + 1 (download)
Saturday, October 31, 2009
As previously discussed (don't look, I deleted it); I was looking to tweak and reboot the blog a little. I've done it! New logo, re-did the dimensions some, added a cbox for easier commenting/requesting, and added a chunk of new uploads.
Below this post you will find:
Dag Nasty "Demo 1985" (w/Shawn Brown)
On A Solid Rock "Where Kids Don't Play" 7inch (Finnish Hardcore)
Everlast "Drown the Self" 7inch (90's Midwest Chuggy Hardcore)
Incite "Demo" (Midwest Hardcore again, but more straight forward)
VA "Rebirth of Hardcore:1999" (In My Eyes, Where Fear & Weapons Meet, Battery, Tons more!)
Enjoy, comment, request, suggest, check the blogs linked on the right, and feel free to just say "Hi" in general.
Also, might I suggest this board if you're upright, not a moron, and like the music on this blog: xSTUCK IN THE PASTx
going to this show if you're in California or surrounding areas, last time live and first chance to grab the new (final) 7inch
For most who frequent this blog, Dag Nasty is probably a fairly well known band. But, for those not in the know, it goes... In Washington DC, where the hardcore has always had the DC harDCore sound, 1985 brought the creation of one of the bands who would help define the origins of melodic hardcore & emo-core sounds. Still bringing fury and anger, they doused the sound heavily with melody & vocals that were more sung than screamed.
The members have come from and gone on to a ton of bands; you've heard of most of them or you wouldn't be here; the experience shows as even in very early shows the band was firing at a level above many established bands. The release the band is most known & praised for being their debut "Can I Say" which blended speed with melody in a very precise, melodic execution. Big words, right? Really though, in many regards this is not only a landmark record in punk or hardcore but in guitar driven music in general.
"Can I Say" featured Dave Smalley (DYS, All, Down By Law) on vocals; but there had been a previous singer named Shawn Brown (later of Swiz), who is the person showcased on this demo.
Different songs from the demo have surfaced off and on or been included on Compilations (official & unofficial), but to the best of my knowledge (and searching), the 1985 Demo has not ever been released in its entirety. While I do not like the 1985 Demo as much as Can I Say (or even the Pete Cortner led Wig Out At Denkos), it still is very good and gets played with some regularity. It's nice to hear the early takes and with the original singer.
Enjoy! Sunderman, this one's for you (even if you have these already).
Dag Nasty - Demo 1985 (w/ Shawn Brown)
Finnish Hardcore from the late 90's/early 2000's. They played a style that blended a lot of different hardcore styles. Never slow, but sometimes a bit of a mid-pace, add in melody and emo to a straight up Hardcore back bone and you have a loose idea of what really can only be understood by listening.
Not revolutionary or groundbreaking, but definitely different & worth a listen. The vocals are an added touch. I'm not sure if part of it is the accent caused by singing in english; but there is also a distinct guttural tone to the singing at times.
I find myself coming back to this little gem over and over through the years from when I first heard them when a good friend sent me an mp3 of the song "Let It Die" way back in the dial-up/pre-everyone having cd burner days. It would still be a year or two before I found a copy of this 7inch in a distro @ a show at the Smell. They also did an LP called "Steal It Back", which I have had no luck finding other than on CD in euro distros. It exists on vinyl, so the CD holds little to no interest other than having the best possible sounding digital versions. So, if any of you out there have the On A Solid Rock LP or find it (even MP3's), let a guy know.
The band ended in 2004 with their singer moving to California to live in a Krsna temple. Last I heard he was still there and still going full tilt.
They have a Myspace & a website; neither are active but still well set-up.
On A Solid Rock - "Where Kid's Don't Play" 7inch
The other band, Incite, hailed from Youngstown (and outlying parts), Ohio & while also a 90's band, didn't play chug-chug hardcore.
I became aware of this band through picking up the Cold War comp., which I had gotten for the Within A Lie song (because I loved the track on the Indecision Records comp.). To be honest, the first time I listened the whole comp. was a bit of a letdown; but it had been a dollar bin rescue from Dr. Strange & it held potential.
Some time later, good friend Andy IV turned over some of his records to me so that I could rip them for him. One of those records happened to be this Everlast 7inch. My interest was again sparked for the comp. and through this Everlast record I was able to get into the band more (good job Andy).
Chuggy hardcore like you would expect; pissed off and heavy on the toms and stopping/starting in the right spots. Not a bad record at all. Won't blow any minds, but it's got solid replay value. According to comments on the Coregasm Blog (who also posted this 7inch), a member of Racetraitor & a (brief) member of Disembodied were in this band, so some more Mid-west Hardcore notoriety for those of you who care.
Everlast - "Drown the Self" 7inch
Eons ago, when trolls lived in AOL chatrooms and modems made bleep-bleet noises and your older brothers and sisters would curse when "too many people were on-line" which prevented them from getting on line; in a time between direct dial-in Bulletin Board Systems & the modern Message Board, some people communicated through e-mail groups. A person could email something out through a client/service and it would go to everyone signed up. Likewise, responses to that email would go back through the group. Kinda like the "Reply All" function so used in office email now.
So, in those days when Pregnasauraus ruled the world and Webrings were everywhere (remember that link swapping stuff? haha), I met this kid Zack (I don't remember the email group, but I know the singer from Burden was active on it too). Anyhow, Zack & I hit it off. He was from the midwest, me the west coast. We were both into hardcore and what more did you need at a young age? Seriously.
At the time Zack was in a band called Proof Positive, who had just started up. But, as has often been the case with Zack, he had his hand in many projects at once. One recently deceased project was the band Incite. Incite played something probably best described as 90's hardcore in a vein of doing a little bit of everything in a blend that kinda gives you Snapcase meets Warzone. No, there's no skinhead anthems or tightly tuned snare drums. But there are some things that don't fit with their overall straight forward hardcore sound. Ohio hardcore that wasn't crossing over into rap metal/rock or tough sounding. I know, who knew that existed in the 90's? (ha ha).
Incite - "Demo Tape"
One of my personal favorite comps. from the late 90's/tail end of the supposed "youth crew" revival. Good selection of bands with In My Eyes, Battery (live track), Where Fear & Weapons Meet, Atari, Saves the Day, Rain on the Parade, Mainstrike, & more.
People can talk shit, say generic, say whatever- but at least the bands I listed still hold up. Sure, the Good Clean Fun joke got old beyond 2 7inches & some of them ended up being real tools; but otherwise all the bands & tracks on here are at the very least standard fare.
My copy is a 12inch Picture Disc. I scanned the folded layout in 3 sections at a real high resolution (someone else can piece em together if they want). I did that so you can see the full layout and small print. I also snapped pictures of the A Side (CD cover), & the B Side (drawing of Ray Cappo with all the band logos).
VA - Rebirth of Hardcore:1999
Sunday, August 23, 2009
Turning Point, Burn, Gorilla Biscuits, No Escape... need any more more reasons for downloading and listening to this?
Really though, great comp. 7inch from 1990 on Temperance Records showcasing a period of change and transition in the hardcore scene. Other than the straight forward (and funny) Gorilla Biscuits song, the comp. finds Turning Point adding the melodic/emotional element that represented their later songs and both Burn & No Escape playing music that would help shape and redefine hardcore.
The Download includes the scans of the cover/booklet with pages for each band and for fun a scan of the animal rights pamphlet that came with it.
Rebuilding Comp. 7inch (DOWNLOAD)
This was later re-issued as a 12inch/CD with some added tracks. I think its actually out of press now and the guys over at Stuck in the Past put it up HERE
Sunday, August 9, 2009
I happened upon Blogged & Quartered probably 2 months ago and recently made my way back today while enjoying a easy Sunday afternoon Angels game.
Great blog full of collections compiled by the blog's author. Judge, Merel, Antidote, Warzone, NY Hoods, Gorilla Biscuits, United Mutation, and a TON of others. Very worth checking out and supporting.
So head over there, get the goods and make sure to say hi and let the man know his hard work is appreciated.
Blogged & Quartered
Blogged & Quartered
Blogged & Quartered
Now playing: Stiff Little Fingers - Alternative Ulster*
Sunday, August 2, 2009
The Ruts are quite an interesting band. Coming from the 70's UK Punk scene, their sound was very weighted with Reggae but still possessing that driving punk attitude. Where the Clash dabbled in Ska & Reggae, the Ruts embraced it and not only incorporated it; but made straight out Reggae jams. From the bouncing pogo punk anthems like Savage Circle & Society to the middle ground of Babylon's Burning, SUS & Dope For Guns to the outright Reggae of Black Man's Pinch (Give Youth a Chance) & Love in Vain the Ruts hit a stride that is a punk blueprint for pissed and fast giving way to moments of serenity and a slower step.
This album is included because the Ruts seem to be left aside when bigger bands get mentioned (especially UK bands)& from my searching I only seem to find used copies for sale on sites like Amazon UK & UK Ebay. These tracks; while missing a few greats like "West One (Shine On Me)" & "H-Eyes"; are of amazing quality (as Peel Sessions usually are) and a great sampling of the band playing some of their best music at their peak.
Their only 2 proper Lp's as the Ruts ("The Crack" & "Grin & Bear It") are pretty easy to find on one nice reissued CD these days and well worth more than you'll ever have to pay for it. Sadly, the band was cut short with the death of their singer in 1980. They continued on as the Ruts DC, and while it wasn't horrible, it wasn't the Ruts.
The Ruts - The Complete Peel Sessions
Now playing: The Ruts - Dope For Guns
Saturday, August 1, 2009
A band that needs little to no introduction; love them, hate them, disregard them; you still likely know who they are. It's been said that they eschewed the punk & hardcore roots that many of their "grunge" contemporaries more openly embraced. Whether that is completely true or not is for others to argue. Whether Billy Corgan is a tyrannical band leader is fine talk while sitting around with friends; but clear for me is that as a young teen transitioning into punk & hardcore full tilt in the 90's, Smashing Pumpkins still resonated with me as I was busy going through those anti-radio/anti-corporate growing pains of Punk Rock. I can still put on Smashing Pumpkins stuff and be impressed. Maybe the band is a bunch of nuts or fame seekers; who knows. But there's some good tunes in there regardless if theyre saints or assholes.
This is a short set, including a cover of Thin Lizzy's "Dancing In the Moonlight", which personally makes the set worthwhile for me. I'm a Thin Lizzy fan, as well, Corgan sounds so haunting on vocals.
Smashing Pumpkins - Live Acoustic 1993
Sunday, July 19, 2009
Some time in the mid to late 90's ish time when tape trading was still a viable entity; i tape traded with someone who sent me a tape with the Time Flies, Bladecrasher, In My Eyes, Reinforce, Atari, Impact (pre-UxT; not the christian or OC sXe band) & Until X Today demos on it. I don't remember what I sent to them, but it was someone id connected with through the old Rev Board. I did a lot of tape trading that summer, but this was by far the most fun (at that time) tape I got that summer other than maybe Sham 69's Hersham Boys.
Besides being packed full with some fun (albiet mostly generic) revival bands, the person had been nice enough to photo copy most of the demo tape covers for me. That Bladecrasher demo has become a personal fave, the Reinforce records still get some love (haters be damned) and In My Eyes went on to release the defining lp's of that time and style of revival HC; but Until X Today's demo has always stood out the most to me.
I had no clue what to expect when I heard that demo; but what i got was a weird and fun take on what most people call "youth crew revival." The music had a hook to it, a catchy-ness i more associate to punk, with some simple but at that time unexpected switches in the music's pace. The lyrics always hit at me too. Not too deep, but enough so that it resonated with that young 20-something me.
I won't drag on with the fond memories, let's get this blog back in action already- I will however add a parting shot:
When Nate and I had gotten the original (YMCA) SOS Project up and running, The First Step came through. I had been taking my records back and forth to play them in the lobby where a bunch of us hung out. Not even thinking about it, I'd played some Until Today after the show to which the guitarist of the First Step called their singer over to hear. Neither of them could believe it. Being the dork I was, I'd completely forgotten that the singer of the First Step was the singer of Until Today. Im sure it had to have been weird for him to be in Riverside, California and some dude from the venue was blasting his old (and smaller) band. heh.
Until Today - A Brand New Start (demo) 7inch [DOWNLOAD]
Now playing: On A Solid Rock - Let It Die / Days of the Daisy Cutter
Saturday, January 10, 2009
This is the second Quicksand 7inch I've posted here, but this is actually the first one they did (for a major label | first lp). These are actually demo versions of the songs that would later appear on their first lp "Slip".
If you're not in the know- Quicksand was a post-hardcore band in the mid/late 90's (and yet another band featuring a who's who of New York Hardcore bands) who release an EP and two Lp's as well as a variety of singles and an unreleased/unfinished third lp before splitting up for good. Growing through years of playing in genre defining and changing bands such as Gorilla Biscuits, Beyond, Burn, and Bold (to name a few) the members of Quicksand took the hammering and pounding sounds of hardcore and meshed them well with jangling guitars and loud bass driven songs. Start|stop guitars, clean vocals, but still the ability to crush and precision playing among the best.
Quicksand was and continues to be one of the most influential bands in the genre of Post-Hardcore as well as heavy rock.
Quicksand - "Dine Alone | Can Opener" 7inch (DOWNLOAD)
Previous Quicksand Post HERE (Also includes 2 other Post-Hardcore 7inches)
Now playing: Quicksand - Shovel
The Blog has a Myspace.
So many people use myspace, myself included. This gives a more streamlined way to let people know about updates.
I hit up Message Boards as much as I can, post bulletins to my own myspace (which has helped a lot of people I know who arent into this music hear new old stuff); but this makes an option for anyone who wants to find out when I post new things to the blog.
I will be posting Bulletins Once, maybe Twice. I wont be making 10 bulletins each time and they will be hours/days apart; not 5 times in a row flooding your bulletins (i delete bands and people who do that).
I will also be posting to the myspace blog info. for each post I do here, so if you miss bulletins (as i often do) you can just look there.
I may also do some stuff that gets posted there first/only. Who knows.
Enjoy and add the profile.
As always, tell your friends, pets, enemies, romantic others, and don't hesitate to comment, request, or suggest.
Now playing: Quicksand - Voice Killer
Tuesday, January 6, 2009
East Coast Hardcore feat. members of every other band* you can think of (seriously). I'd guess that a lot of people who frequent this blog know who they are already; and those of you who don't- DOWNLOAD THIS.
Pissed Off hardcore that held enough straight forward sound mixed with a boiling over of emotions and changing sounds. A simpler sound than Unbroken but possessing an anger and voice just as loud as them- volatile and explosive mid paced hardcore.
Ressurection - "s/t" 7inch
*including members of Release, 108, Lifetime, Floorpunch, Kid Dynamite, Paint it Black, and many more
**This was released on New Age Records originally /// Deathwish has been claiming to be preparing a Discography for some time. Those versions will be remastered, but for any who may have concern- i will remove these if you find it necessary, just contact me*
Now playing: Ressurection - Blindside
Sunday, January 4, 2009
Collision were a local band from Inland Empire/Southern California in the late 90's/early 00's. Playing pretty straight forward hardcore, it seemed like they played nearly every hardcore show at Showcase Theatre during their time.
This is their final recording/release after a 7inch and Ep on Ambassador Records. Sadly, this demo (their best stuff) never saw proper release. Their previous releases were good, but always befell some kind of setback (7inch was ok, but generally generic & their Ep suffered from a horrid mastering job of some otherwise very promising songs).
Members went on to be in a lot of bands (Amendment 18, Internal Affairs, Stand & Fight, One X Choice, & more) and recently ('07/'08) their were talks of Collision returning but a stable line-up was never secured. Bummer.
For Fans of: the Nerve Agents (pre-White Owl), Chain of Strength, Over My Dead Body, etc.
Collision - Demo 2001 (DOWNLOAD)
Now playing: My Revenge! - Gay Marriage is Better Than Your Marriage
Strongarm was a well known hardcore band from Florida from 1993 - 1998 (and some later reunions). Known as much for being one of the leading bands on Tooth & Nail Records at the height of the "Spirit-Filled Hardcore" era of the 90's as they were for having members of Shai Hulud, Further Seems Forever, and many more bands.
Strongarm picked up where "traditional" hardcore was veering off in the 90's and took it to a heavier side like many of their contemporaries, but rather opted for speed and melody where many others were playing the more popular metallic influenced sound. Their final recording "Advent of a Miracle" is a large jumping off point for bands like Shai Hulud.
This is essentially the beginning, coming just before the 7inches & first lp on Tooth and Nail.
Strongarm - Demo (DOWNLOAD)
Now playing: Northern Towns - Life Pisses By