Sunday, November 12, 2017

"Make Emo Great Again": Your unofficial guide to 80s and 90s american emocore. Part 3: Chaotic Emo

Note: Yeah, baby! 

Coucou, les! We're back with the third part of our 80s and 90s american emo special post. I think everyone will love this entry (including grindcore and powerviolence fans alike) because we'll feature the most chaotic and dissonant emo offshoot: hardcore emo or chaotic emo (from now on we'll use this label), my favorite one. In fact, chaotic emo is an umbrella term for describing some San Diego-based (most of them affiliated to Gravity Records) emocore bands that played fast as fuck and some featured bands in previous posts such as Merel could also fit into this style. Nonetheless, this term has been widely accepted (or at least amongst the emo connaisseurs). And, since chaotic emo inspired both screamo and emoviolence, we'll feature some of these bands in the next post (Things are getting tougher again). Finally, we'll finish this special post before the end of this week because I'm finishing its last two entries. With all that written, let's begin. 

Heroin - Discography CD!DxwyDQIQ!cSyufchKqwu62iuFsv690Pr_U-00c9QPHHF7qzlQ930

Heroin was a short-lived hardcore punk band from San Diego, California that only released All About Heroin 7" (Vinyl Communications, 1991), Heroin 7" (Gravity Records, 1992) and Heroin 12" (Gravity Records, 1993). Regarding the sound, Heroin played short, fast and loud hardcore punk. No distortion, no slow and introspective interludes. Pure velocity, baby. However, the band still retained some emo elements like the vocal style and the use of deep and abstract political and personal lyrics. Among all chaotic emo bands, Heroin has a special place in my heart. It was the first one I knew and woke inside me my craving for more dissonant and frantic music. Finally, this is the self-titled CD (Gravity, 1997) that compiles everything that this band ever recorded, except two compilations tracks that will be featured later. Highly recommended. Enjoy! 

Honeywell - Discography 2xCD (unofficial)!Lp4jmCbJ!5vmZLhY5Oqxn0ERSzneaXbN4ZC-cieomvjA89hm_TNk

Honeywell was a hardcore band from Corona, California and active between 1991 and 1996. During their lifetime, they only released self-titled 7" ($ellout, 1992), Industry LP (Mollycoddle, 1993), split with Reach Out (Anomaly, 1993 / Kurt and Jason, 1996) and Electric Kool Aid 7" (Monotone Supersounds, 1996). Originally, the band meant to play as other popular straight edge bands such Manlifting Banner or Chain of Strength, but later decided to put Rites of Spring's influences and, not happy with that, they decided to combine all that and play like if there's no tomorrow. The result? Some of the best chaotic, dissonant, and frantic political emocore bands ever created. This is one of the first bands coined as screamo due to their particular musical style. Finally, this is an unofficial (I guess...) discography that compiles every single official release of the band, except their demos because these ones are really hard to find. Highly recommended. Enjoy!

Mohinder - Everything!f8AFSbpI!Lxo-SV9yjWkS6Qbx68jJy2dj7qE3NpZwCD1zmVeOFfY

Mohinder was a short-lived hardcore band from Cupertino, California that only released O Nation, You Bleed From Many Wounds, 1896 7" (Unleaded Records, 1993), self-titled 7" (Gravity, 1994), split with Nitwits (Unleaded Records, 1994) and Transient Sequences (Unleaded Records, 1999), which is a compilation of two live performances and released when the band was already disolved. Regarding the sound, Mohinder also played hardcore punk fast as fuck with lots of guitar distortion, deep and overwhelming basslines, screamed yet audible vocals and random yet precise drumming. And, of course, the lyrics are both personal and political with abstract stances. Finally, this is the LP version of Everything (Gold Standard Laboratories, 2001) containing everything (duh!) that this band ever recorded without the extra CD containing 3 live performances as bonus (Note that the latter are different to the featured ones in Transient Sequences). Highly recommended. Enjoy!

Reach Out - split with Honeywell and self-titled 7"!vgoTjbjT!GRcOpitvs6-WYBE0ST5VLksAApGQvsfpIg_RkHzYLJc

Reach Out was a short-lived hardcore punk band from somewhere in Northern California that only released one split with Honeywell (Anomaly, 1993 / Kurt and Jason, 1996) and one self-titled 7" (The Great American Steak Religion, 1994). Their style is pretty similar to emerging chatoic emo bands from their time such as Clikatat Ikatowi and Angel Hair. Despite their short existence, this band was also a foundation for screamo style. Indeed, their split with Honeywell, along with the split of Portraits of Past with Bleed (Ebullition, 1994), is a reference to the offshoot. Finally, you'll find in the file both full split and their only 7". Highly recommended. Enjoy!

Antioch Arrow - In Love With Jetts/The Lady Is A Cat CD compilation!axBQxYxR!MKyC4rAxFJF0FW0FeblqG4NdQPiXjTppCheHSUkhkB8

Ah, another classic and all-time favorite is finally here. Antioch Arrow was a short-lived yet prolific hardcore punk act from San Diego, California. Among all San Diego-based chaotic emo outfits, this is probably the most influential and popular. During their short existence, they released In Love With Jetts 12" (Gravity, 1993), The Lady Is A Cat 12" (1993, Gravity), split with Candle (Gravity / Wrenched, 1994) and Gems Of Masochism LP (Amalgamated, 1995 / Three One G, 2003 (re-release)). Regarding, the sound, Antioch Arrow played fast and tight hardcore punk with early emo influences. They also added lots of distortion, noise, fuzz and weird space rock samplers, as well as having an unorthodox musical execution filled with violent tempo changes. Many people told me that their music was so intense that their presentations tended to be shorter than other traditional hardcore acts. And, with the release of their LP, the band opted for having an image and music more akin to goth rock and post punk, drifting apart a little from their original hardcore roots. Finally, this is the CD version (Gravity, 1997) that compiles all the works, previous to the release of Gems of Masochism, with some live performances and tracks from split with Candle as bonus tracks. Highly recommended. Enjoy!         

Angel Hair - Pregnant With The Senior Class!P54EFRyQ!B9PdSHnIK7KaFinno2QkgyzLe73PjMM69qWIcPvMBwQ

Another chaotic emo heavyweight from San Diego that was active between 1994 and 1995 and released self-titled 7" (Gravity, 1994), splits with Bare Minimum (Gold Standard Laboratories, 1994), The Fisticuffs Bluff (Unleaded, 1994) and Kerosene 454 (Strict, 1994) and Insect Mortality LP (Gravity, 1995). Regarding the sound, Angel Hair played fast as fuck hardcore punk with noise, post punk and emo influences for creating their top-notch and unbeatable style. In fact, when I knew this band long time ago I couldn't believe that they were associated to emo. Also, their lyrics were both political and personal but also had Star Trek references. Why? Dunno, is it because it was so cool that many 90s emo kids looked like Dr. Spock? Probably. And, their LP is a huge and direct influence for screamo. Finally, I present you Pregnant With The Senior Class CD (Gravity, 1997), compiling everything that this band ever recorded, including a superb Bauhaus cover. It could sound funny but thanks to an emo band I knew that influential goth rock band. Yeah, cool. Right?. Highly recommended. Enjoy!

Clikatat Ikatowi - Orchestrated And Directed By LP!aoZgTBTa!N9ZIVd_d4GzskkMRhplBhRW_sr4ngpnY8bcCwKK6pH4

Another great outfit from San Diego, California that only released one demo (Gravity, 1994), this LP (Gravity, 1996), Live August 29th and 30th, 1995 (Gravity, 1997) and Rivers Of Souls 12" (Gravity, 1998). Unlike other local chaotic emo outfits, this band was more experimental and added more math rock, noise and post-hardcore influences to their repertory. However, the music was still chaotic, dissonant and frantic like their homologues. This band is one of those underrated hardcore jewels that tried to surpass the natural musical boundaries of the most important punk rock subgenre, but without losing the grip, obviously. Finally, get this LP. It's fantastic. Highly recommended. Enjoy!

Swing Kids - Discography!DlAiSATY!NCL_b1GELUjn07VA7wz4We4PuGpkoQYdlfEK1uaP9j4

Swing Kids was a short-lived hardcore band from San Diego, California that featured members of other local bands such as Struggle, Spanakorzo and Unbroken, among others. During their lifetime, they only released one self-titled 7" (Three One G, 1994) and one split with Spanakorzo (Three One G, 1995). Rgearding the sound, Swing Kids played short, fast and loud hardcore punk with lots of distortion, drastic tempo changes, screamed and whispered vocals and influences of different musical genres such as thrashcore, avant garde, and, even, some jazz tunes. Due to their guitarist's suicide (also guitarist of Unbroken), Swing Kids disbanded and many other bands were created, notably the loved/hated experimental grindcore outfit The Locust. And, in 2010, they did a brief reunion and recorded one single Situations On Mars/Fake Teeth (Three One G, 2011) with the ex-guitarist of The Locust and Guyver-1. Finally, this is the Discography CD (Three One G, 1997) containing everything this superb band ever recorded in the 90s. Highly recommended. Enjoy!

Portraits of Past - Demo, Discography and split with Bleed!G4QABLAS!GxHXBYGNJQ1IewQcFuToaXGIKVcP2snhWvf-Fdw00Ds

Portraits of Past was an influential emo/screamo band from San Francisco, California that only released one demo (self-released, 1993), split with Bleed (Ebullition Records, 1994), self-titled LP (Ebullition Records, 1996) and Cypress Dust Witch (Excursions Into The Abyss, 2009). Like many famous artists, Portraits of Past wasn't really popular during their lifetime despite their superb musical projection. Indeed, after the commercial failure of their first LP, the group disbanded and it wasn't until many years later that this band would get the recognition that always deserved. Their split with Bleed is one of the most important records of the screamo offshoot. Finally, inside the file you'll find the demo, the Discography CD and the entire split with Bleed separately. Highly recommended. Enjoy!

Guyver-One - Discography!60wDSIzI!qL8BenK2nOMUOIRP868w7RbUPO3AvjrNj-mBlA62DrM

We finally conclude this entry with this amazing band. Guyver-One (named after the infamous pilot of Mazinger Z) was a short-lived hardcore punk band from San Diego that only released self-titled 7" (*inchworm, 1996) and Obsessed With...12" (*inchworm, 1997). They also contributed one track to I Can't Live Without It compilation. Regarding the sound, Guyver-One  played noisy, distorted, outpaced and fast as a lightning bolt hardcore punk just like other local bands such as Heroin, Angel Hair and Antioch Arrow. In fact, this band was the last guardian of the original San Diego chaotic emo style because most of the aforementioned musical groups were either already disbanded or playing another stuff. Finally, this is the discography compiled and self-released by the band in 2008 and contains everything that they ever recorded. Highly recommended. Enjoy and until next time. Kisses and hugs! 

"Make Emo Great Again": Your unofficial guide to 80s and 90s american emocore. Part 2: Straight Emo, subpart B.

Note: Myspace was a cool place with this kind of images. Am I right?

Coucou, les! We're back with the last subpart of the second part of our american emo special post. I'm deeply sorry for being inactive almost a month but the "real world" has consumed me. Some of the featured bands were meant to be featured in the previous post but...YOLO, I guess?. No. I'm joking. In fact, organizing the content was a little bit difficult because I had to discard lots of bands that would certainly fit in here. Some of them will be featured in some compilations I'll put in the final entry, whilst some others will come back in other different entries. Also, we'll finally finish this unexpectedly successful special post (thank you so much, les!) this weekend. Don't forget to click on the images for downloading the records (most of them include artwork, layouts, lyrics, etc.). In other news, starting next week, I'll post some incredible demos released this year so far, as well as some physical copies of some colombian hardcore punk compilations already featured here in the blog. Lastly, the last special post of the year, the unofficial guide to 80s swedish hardcore punk through compilations, will be published throughout december. With all that written, let's begin.

After Words  - self-titled LP!yphxhaQY!9pACeipI8OSVk572V9BjYx59Kl60aOczt7dWksSSNMk

This is the only record that this amazing Atlanta-based emo band ever recorded. It was released through Sammich Records in 1989. They also contributed one exclusive track to The View: An Atlanta Compilation 1984 - 1990 (Lunchbox Records, 1990). I think there's also one live session in some american college radio show but I'm not really sure if they did so. Regarding the sound, After Words took the best elements of D.C. emocore style and added an unique and particular mesmerizing melodic hardcore approach to it. Indeed, the musical execution is simply amazing (overwhelming guitars, catchy bass tunes, clean and melodic vocals and precise drums). If Rites of Spring still existed as a band in 1989, they would probably sound like After Words. For sure. Highly recommended. Enjoy!  

Manneqvin Hand - Complete works!fxJgzTDJ!KkfdKLcDOWZmVSmpTmaycKr0P9mjiZ7VLHW5pJyan_0

I never thought I'd ever write about this short-lived enigmatic band. I don't have much information about it but I only know they released one demo cassette (self released, 1989), their only single 7" named Jow (Shakefork Records, 1990) and contributed one track to No Punks In The Pit compilation (Shakefork Records, 1990). Regarding the sound, this band still played like early D.C. emo and post-hardcore bands but a little bit more faster. Indeed, you can detect a satisfying melodic yet precise musical execution with deep and abstract included. Lastly, enjoy this cryptic and not-well known hardcore punk band. Would we ever see an official discography release? I certainly hope so... The file includes everything that this band ever recorded, including an unreleased EP. Highly recommended. Enjoy!
Admiral -  Full albums!ntwmCLRZ!-2nVVL7dW1QUv5W64s82xPApyzccQP_fmGbANeNaOio

Ahhh, yes. They're finally here. This impressive Pennsylvania-based hardcore punk band was active from 1989 to 1991 and released two records: self-titled 7" (Soul Force Records, 1990) and Revolving And Loading (Ebullition Records, 1993) and also contributed some tracks to different hardcore punk compilations. Regarding the sound, Admiral took the best elements of early emo and added a special melodic yet fast-paced sound to it (similar to both After Words and Manneqvin Hand). There are also some elements that would eventually define the whole emo subgenre, such as slower introspective interludes and deeper basslines, among others. After their break-up, members went on to Hoover and Navio Forge, other two foundational emo bands. Lastly, let you mesmerize by their impressive and forceful style. This band also needs an official discography...The file includes their two records. Highly recommended. Enjoy!    

Shadow Season  - self-titled 7"!PppEBSRK!ZPbCbg84Qdivg_dFGMJIJ_8jh97yHonb4PVgn2yFecM

This amazing yet underrated 7" was released by Harvest Records in 1991. Regarding the sound, you'll find the perfect mix of early D.C. emocore with the emerging straight edge hardcore style of the time. In later recordings, they would develop a more refined and alternative rock-oriented sound and, eventually, playing like many of the loved/hated mid-90's "midwestern emo" style bands. Despite their cryptic existence, you can detect the sound of this beautiful record in many european and american hardcore acts of the time such as Shatter The Myth (France), Spit Acid (Germany) and Mean Season (USA), for naming a few. Highly recommended. Enjoy!  

Chino Horde - self-titled CD!PkRDhI5L!zfIcYwZLqHzlWihl_9Vf_ercyEYWUqR4qyDa8JNYGRs

Chino Horde was a short-lived yet prolific hardcore punk band from Little Rock, Arkansas. Some of their members also ran File 13 Records, a record label that released plenty of 90s emocore records, including, obviously, Chino Horde's releases. This band only released one self-titled cassette (1990), self-titled 7" (1990), split with Current (1994) and This Is Done 7" (1995). There's also one discography LP released in 2010 by german hardcore punk label Adagio830 named Everything (that ironically doesn't contain "everything" this band ever recorded because some tracks are missing). Regarding the sound, Chino Horde played fast-paced hardcore punk with slow and introspective interludes in the same vein as Hoover, Moss Icon and Embrace. For a strange reason, this band isn't really well-known despite their pivotal influence on the whole emo subgenre. Only true diehard fans and freaks like me know them haha. Lastly, this is the 1993 CD re-issue of the first 7" with remastered sound and two extra tracks absent in the original release as bonus. Highly recommended. Enjoy!

1.6 Band - Broke Up!C5BRkSwa!xoLgoybXaTj0ypeVohkp1rmTaJ7-tJWdXFYfKDYuXkQ

1.6 Band was a short-lived hardcore band from Long Island, New York and featured members of other "heavier" hardcore outfits such as Judge, Rorschach and Beyond. This band was a complete surprise for their local hardcore scene because there weren't so many bands of this kind. They only released self-titled LP (Gern Blandsten, 1992), Tongue Family Style 7" (Sunspot Records, 1992), Pimpin' Ain't Easy 7" (Wardance, 1993), splits with Rorschach (Chainsaw Safety Recordings, 1994) and Scapegrace (Riptide Recordings, 1994) and The Checkered Past Of All Kings Present 7" (Metastasis Records, 2010).  Regarding the sound, 1.6 band played fast and straight-to-the-point hardcore punk with some complex musical execution changing different tempos, using distortion and dissonant beats and both political and satirical stances. These elements would be more akin to chaotic emo and early screamo bands of the time. You could imagine a mix of both Dag Nasty and Minutemen in a very, very bad mood. Finally, this is a collection CD (Gren Blandsten, 1996) that compiles their early recordings from 1991 to 1993. Pretty good stuff. Highly recommended. Enjoy! 

Iconoclast - Iconoclast CD + split with Abyss!bhBnFZYY!wF6Vbro1GOcreAL5q0vcgWj4jXc7Y_imAl4EzjOKlTY

Iconoclast (do not confuse it with the japanese hardcore band of the same name) was a short-lived emo band from New Jersey. They only released one self-titled 7" (Ebullition Records, 1992), split with Merel (Old Glory, 1992), Groundlessness Of Belief (Ebullition Records, 1994) and split with german band Abyss (Old Glory / Love Records, 1995). Regarding the sound, Iconoclast managed to develop an unique emotional hardcore style with straightforward and fast-paced execution with less pronounced slow and introspective interludes. Also, despite their image, their lyrics were highly political. Finally, this is a self-titled CD compilation (Ebullition Records, 1994) that compiles everything that this band recorded between 1992 and 1994 and the full split with Abyss separately. Highly recommended. Enjoy! 

Merel - Merel CD!PhpE1JZK!jOVe_ncCyOgwx0KvpgPNwqpZbKPsigYE0yEYu6c_5Sg

Merel was a short-lived band from New Jersey that only released two self-titled albums (Gern Blandsten, 1991 (7") and 1992 (LP)) and split with Iconoclast (Old Glory, 1992). They also contributed tracks to different hardcore compilations such as Fear Of Smell and God's Chosen People. Regarding the sound, Merel played faster and with less musical complexity and instrumentation, pretty similar to chaotic emo and early screamo bands such as Heroin and Mohinder. After the release of the LP, the band managed some slow-paced interludes, something like a less dark yet angrier version of both Moss Icon and Hoover. Also, their lyrics were political criticizing different aspects of life, notably the church and god's concept. Finally, this is the self-titled complete discography CD (Gern Blandsten, 1995). Highly recommended. Enjoy!

Jawbreaker -  Unfun and Bivouac!ut4nkAJS!uWnMO0HmimlUBlGZJY8zeKsrPregcbxNebgWoFGUwYs

Best. Emo. Band. Ever. Period. 'Nuff said...No, I'm joking. But I'm pretty sure that many people out there have this thought. Jawbreaker is a band from San Francisco, California with an extensive discography and more than 20 years of musical career. I decided to only feature their first two full-length albums Unfun LP (Shredder Records, 1990) and Bivouac LP (Communion Label, 1992) because they're their only trve emo records. Regarding the sound, Jawbreaker mixed early D.C. emo and post-hardcore with pop punk. Yup. Pop punk. Well, at least the first 90s pop punk bands were cooler than now. They would develop a more pop punk and alternative rock-oriented in later recordings and would also acquire a decent mainstream success. Finally, I have to admit that this musical shift is more elaborated than the featured records here but these ones are unbeatable. In fact, in some of my life stages, I really have been identified with their lyrics. Oh, miserable teenage feelings and thoughts...Highly recommended. Enjoy!         

Assfactor 4 - both 7"s and both LPs!ntwwRCxY!OZZV7MjjxK1DUycX81QA-awBJ61ReHHfUDavWhUolCA

Assfactor 4 was a hardcore punk band from Columbia, South Carolina. During their lifetime, they released Sometimes I Suck 7" (Repercussion, 1993), split with Rights Reserved (Fallen Squirrel, 1993), Smoked Out 7" (Old Glory, 1994), self-titled LP (Old Glory, 1995) and Sports LP (Old Glory, 2000) and also contributed different tracks to compilations such as the infamous All The President's Men, We've Lost Beauty and Nothing's Quiet On The Eastern Front, among others. Regarding the sound, unlike their other emo contemporaries, this band played mostly fast-paced and straightforward hardcore punk, but we do also find some slower interludes and more complex guitar and bass chords, however. Also, their lyrics were highly political and criticized many economic and social political issues, including they made fun of different stereotypes and acts within the hardcore punk community of their time. Finally, check this band out. Many people have argued that Assfactor 4 was one of the coolest 90s hardcore acts ever and the band that everyone wanted to play with. Should I say more? Highly recommended. Enjoy!     

Maximillian Colby - Discography (1992 - 1995)!XwZBnA6A!hmUggGqhiL1vg73pdY38CD70f0icAe3mFOP7rdTZY00
Maximillian Colby (from now MC) was a short-lived hardcore punk band from Harrisonburg, Virginia that only released one self-titled 7" (Nervous Wreck Kids, 1994), and splits with Rye Coalition (Rent-A-Records/Irony Recordings, 1994) and Shotmaker (Nervous Wreck Kids, 1995), as well as contributing tracks to different compilations such as All The President's Men and Stealing The Pocket. Regarding the sound, MC contributed to the huge explosion of emocore bands in America during the 90s. It's possibly one of the best emo bands, thanks to their unique and superb mix of fast and slow-paced music without losing the grip. Finally, this is the complete discography CD released in 1996 by Whirled Records. Highly recommended. Enjoy!   

Indian Summer - Complete Discography!SkJDkQxC!pjI5qH6K_4KAtIGX-msaBzpm88l_dAMSN_lWqsu-XWA
Another favorite finally appears here in the blog. Indian Summer was a short-lived yet influential emo band from Oakland, California. During their lifetime, they released one self-titled (Repercussion, 1993) and splits with fellow emo comrades Current (Homemade Records, 1993), Embassy (Slave Cut, 1994) and Ordination of Aaron (*inchworm, 1994). Regarding the sound, Indian Summer magically exposed the elements (both musically and aesthetically) of the whole 90s emo subgenre with their superb sound. They also added samplers of old jazz/blues/swing megastar Bessie Smith, whose tormented, heartbroken yet powerful voice gave a more melancholic touch. Also, just like some of their contemporaries, Indian Summer didn't include any information about their whereabouts nor didn't name their songs. In fact, they were unofficially named by their fans many years later and there are at least two names for each one. Finally, I'll present you two compilations discs: The first one named Science CD (Future Recordings, 2002) that compiles everything that this band ever recorded and Hidden Arithmetic CD (Future Recordings, 2006) that compiles two live performances with alternative versions of some of their songs. Highly recommended. Enjoy!        

Navio Forge - As We Quietly Burn A Hole Into...!mkA11IwA!r0CLXMih2GHaXlE84wq-qhgV7YV4Vsxn8_tZUjFMqXU

Another influential band for the subgenre from somewhere in California that only released this beautiful LP (Shadow Catcher, 1993). It featured members of other hardcore bands such as Fuel and Admiral. Regarding the sound, this band is contemporary of other foundational emo bands such as Hoover and Native Nod, so you'll find long songs with slow/fast-paced changes, deep and abstract lyrics and complex yet overwhelming musical execution with some screamed vocals. Pretty good stuff. Their song Haloed Eyes is by far one of the best emo anthems ever written that simply gives you the chills in all your body. Highly recommended. Enjoy!  

Split Lip/Chamberlain - For The Love Of The Wounded and Fate's Got A Driver!z94imCIQ!SmY1EalFcdSTp9NfmCG-KOWg6tGAI8HKgyw9zLhN6gc

Split Lip was a emo/post-hardcore band from Bloomington, Indiana. They only released one self-titled (Doghouse, 1992), For The Love Of The Wounded (Doghouse, 1994), Union Town demo (Doghouse, 1994) and Fate's Got Driver (Doghouse, 1995). After the release of their last record, their music got softer and they changed their name to Chamberlain. This was probably because their record label started to release material of more indie emo-related bands such as The Get Up Kids and gaining more popular reception outside of the hardcore niche. Personally, I rather their early recordings (above all For The Love...) over Chamberlain's material but I have to admit that the re-interpretation contained in Fate' heart-touching, though. In fact, many people consider that this is their best work. Finally, I'll leave you both records for you to judge the two sides of the coin: For The Love..., which is darker and overwhelming, whilst Fate' a little bit more light-hearted and melodic. Yes, it could be more accesible to a non-hardcore punk audience but don't worry, it's still true to their roots. Highly recommended. Enjoy. 

Ordination of Aaron - Completed Works + Acoustic Set!L1hCnYDS!wROZCRDFFrLIR99VUJYvsLiKovJRjRp4522E43w2gP0

Another emo heavyweight is here. Ordination Of Aaron was a short-lived yet highly influential band from Kalamazoo, Michigan. They only released self-titled 7" (Bloodink Records, 1994), Immersion In A 90 MPH World LP (Council Records, 1995), split with Indian Summer (*inchworm, 1994) and an acoustic set (Arcade Kahca/*inchworm, 1995), as well as contributing different tracks to compilations such as We've Lost Beauty and Amnesia, among others. Regarding the sound, Ordination of Aaron still managed the deep emotional hardcore style of their contemporaries such as Current, Policy Of Three and Constantine Sankathi, however, unlike the aforementioned acts, their vocalist had an unique clean and screamed vocal style, which gives the impression that this band wasn't as "dark" nor "depressive" as other emo acts. In fact, some songs are pretty motivational and can cheer you up rapidly. But don't worry, it has an outstanding musical force to remark. Finally, this is the second pressing of their discography CD (Arcade Kahca, 2000) and the original acoustic set separately. Highly recommended. Enjoy! 

Don Martin Three - Complete works!elYkUKRS!7-qsb2rqz8Msn_pzPHI8b_5wWVfiwx3xG4E0vn3yDsk

Holy fuck! We conclude this entry with one of my favorite emo bands of all time is finally here. Don Martin Three (from now DM3) was a short-lived hardcore punk outfit from Saint Augustine, Florida. They only released one self-titled 7" (Oberon Records, 1995) and one self-titled LP (Belladonna Records 1996), as well as Summer Ninety Six, which is a 3-way split shared with Moonraker and Hope Springs Eternal (Kurt and Jason, 1995). A curious fact about their second and last self-titled is that the tracks are untitled and some fans have unoffcially renamed it. This trend also happened with other emo acts such as Indian Summer, for example. Regarding the sound, DM3 played like many of their other contemporaries such as Indian Summer and Julia. Indeed, you'll find every characteristic element of the emo subgenre here (fast/slow paced music changes, screamed and clean vocals, both complex guitar and bass tunes, precise drumming and abstract yet poetic lyrics). Finally, click on the image for downloading everything this band ever recorded, including the full 3-way split with Moonraker and Hope Springs Eternal. This band also needs an official release...Highly recommended. Enjoy and until tomorrow. Kisses and hugs!

Wednesday, October 11, 2017

"Make Emo Great Again": Your unofficial guide to 80s and 90s american emocore. Part 2: Straight Emo, subpart A.

Note: "If life is so fair, why do roses have thorns?" Tickle Me Emo, 2006. Deepest sentence ever. EVER.

Coucou, les! We're back with the second part of our 80s and 90s american emo special post. This entry about "straight emo" subset will be divided in two parts. Also, I'll try to finish for good this special post before October ends because I'll start with another one about 80s swedish hardcore punk compilations, which will also be the last special post of the year. Lastly, I don't have much time recently since "real world affaires" are consuming me and that's why I'll try to be brief as possible. With all that said, let's begin.

Native Nod - Today Puberty, Tomorrow The World discography CD!P1wQBSrA!ctsh-GUsHGope8_XBKLTyL9tnwcyv4fa2x6XJisrDBQ

Gern Blandsten Records (a record label owned by Rorschach's singer, Charles Maggio) released Native Nod's complete discography CD in 1995. This short-lived yet highly influential emo outfit from New Jersey state released three 7"s self-titled, Bread, and New Compositions And Arrangements For The Zither and contributed some tracks to different compilations such as Fear Of Smell and God's Chosen People. Regarding the sound, just like their emo counterparts, Native Nod played fast-paced music with slow and introspective interludes, adding the trademark "emo octave" sound as well as some complex and elaborated distortion to their repertory. We could say that their first two 7" records are not only their best works ever released but also two solid foundations for the whole emo subgenre. On the other hand, in this compilation you'll also find different emo jewels such as Tangled and Bread tracks that simply touch the hidden fibers of your heart with their unmatched deep and intense lyrics. Lastly, this CD also features some later recordings that are not as good as their early material though. And, as a curious fact, the front cover of this discography features Nuestra Señora de Colombia painting (Botero Paintings, 1994) made by colombian artist Fernando Botero. Interesting yet rare choice for an american hardcore punk record. Highly recommended. Enjoy!

Hoover - Lurid Traversal Of Route 7 LP and self-titled 12"!TgATXQRB!IUPI1BLRBPDRgReEj4VKte8MuPC05vOsd1KTjq-hmuM

Hoover was another short-lived yet influential D.C. hardcore outfit that existed between 1992 and 1994. The name comes from the famous US manufacturer of appliances, especially vacuum cleaners. Along with their split with Lincoln, this LP (Dischord Records, 1994) marks the beginning of the emo subgenre as such. Indeed, you'll find here the perfect blend of both Fugazi and Moss Icon's school with deep, abstract and emotionally-charged music. Thus, the musical instrumentation and execution is simply fantastic i.e. Cut Like Drugs track is by far one of the best emo songs ever written with its iconic and mesmerizing tuning. I dare to say that not even the brief emo revival movement in the 00s could ever surpass Hoover's magic. On the other hand, this LP contains their entire discography until 1994. Lastly, Hoover briefly reunited in 1998 and released through Slowdime Records a self-titled 12", which is pretty good too. And, for celebrating the tenth anniversary of their last reunion, the band made their final reunion ever in 2008 with some live performances in North America and Europe. The file contains both records. Highly recommended. Enjoy!

Lincoln - Union, Sugarloaf/Waterboy and split with Hoover!3wpBGayJ!6twamvxtyI5T8-t9CE2PZIGfLjeo3kfJZIIOzXqd9Yo

Lincoln was a short-lived hardcore punk outfit that only released two 7"s: Union (Watermark Records, 1993) and Sugarloaf/Waterboy (Art Monk Construction, 1993) as well as one split with Hoover (Art Monk Construction, 1994). Despite their not so prolific musical career, Lincoln is by far one of the most influential hardcore punk bands within the evolution of emo subgenre. I highly remark their first 7" because it has some elements of other "tough guy" hardcore bands of the era, i.e. "moshable" breakdowns, mixed with emo sensibilities. Thus, you can imagine something like Worlds Collide meets Rites of Spring. The second record, however, it's much slower featuring the infamous "emo octave" but still retaining their weird yet satisfying "chuggy emo" trademark sound. Did you think emo was for lightweights? Lincoln will make you change your opinion. The file contains everything that this amazing band ever recorded, including their split with Hoover. Highly recommended. Enjoy!   

Oversight - After This Day... EP!Os5mhQrT!dJFxDGcF79Grx62-GNYnCQy1fbZ9QBXuiBoBT7UHxNg

Speaking of "chuggy emo", this band could be the first one in their type. This Syracuse-based outfit only released this amazing yet underrated EP through Conquer The World Records in 1992. Regarding the sound, this band mixed perfectly the emerging metallic hardcore of the time with emo sensibilities (moshy parts and stuff included). After the release of this EP, the band formed Framework, following the same musical path (well, kind of). Lastly, give it a try. It's probably passed inaperçu but it is such a great record. And the lyrics are pretty well-written too. I'm pretty sure that, along with Framework, Oversight was highly influential for belgian bands such as Blindfold and Shortsight. Pretty good stuff. Highly recommended. Enjoy!

The Nation Of Ulysses - Plays Pretty For Baby LP!nlIXnAzA!dDQu5nVX_W8JUb8YFdANN0w1LtWfjytyDRVt4JVy7lY

The Nation Of Ulysses (from now NOU) was an experimental post-hardcore band from D.C. with a prolific discography but, for the purposes of this special post, we'll only feature their second LP (Dischord Records, 1992). Like Fugazi, NOU tried to break down the limited schemes (both musically and aesthetically) within their local hardcore punk scene. Indeed, they had an interesting mix of hardcore punk, avant garde, jazz, lo-fi and noise. In fact, it's one of those remarkable exceptions within the hardcore punk niche. Also, the band had a highly-political agenda with a particular dress code (all the members weared suits) and presented themselves like a radical left-wing political party instead of a rock band, playing with that rhetoric on stage and out of it. Do you know where did Refused took inspiration for their "new shape of punk" quest? Yup, you're right. This band was their oracle. Lastly, their prolific material is something to keep an eye on but this LP is a huge influence for the emo subgenre. Highly recommended. Enjoy!   

Still Life - From Angry Heads With Skyward Eyes LP and Slow Children At Play And Beyond CD!ap4k3DIQ!VdICDTJMo5UO0YkfVKLACR2CJ1D_8f-kMT5Vr35oSPM

This is the first full-length album of this amazing emocore band from Moorpark, California. During their early years, it also featured members of Strife, also one of the most influential hardcore punk bands of the time. I chose these two records because I think they capture this band's true essence. In early recordings, Still Life's style was more heavier and "moshy" and, just like their other contemporary emo counterparts, they would develop a more intense style with longer songs, screamed vocals, overwhelming and obscure basslines and a quite fantastic use of palm-mute guitars. The lyrics were both personal and political with abstract and well-elaborated statements. And, as a curious fact, From Angry...LP was rejected by Maximum Rock 'N Roll zine and didn't want to review it because it "wasn't punk enough". Ah, Mr. Yohannan, you were so naïf sometimes...Lastly, you'll find in the file From Angry...LP and a compilation CD that reunites their first 7", their first and only 8" and split track with Evergreen. You can also check their other records out, i.e. their split with Cerberus Shoal that contains their song Looks Like Tomorrow, the best acoustic emo song ever written. Highly recommended. Enjoy!

Constantine Sankathi - Discography CD!K4wWDR6Q!Yrs0J0pK9HcISyJtVR5tLeWz2xnWtGs66mmO_uVLniw

This CD was released in 1998 by Council Records and compiles everything that Constatine Sankathi ever recorded during their short lifespan: Who Killed The Killed Kid 7", Baby Unicorn 7", split with Bev.Clone and The 26th compilation (with Bev.Clone, Nema, Wallside and Mainspring). You'll find in Constantine Sankathi all the characteristic elements of 90s emo: epic and intense long songs, screamed vocals, abstract lyrics, crescendos, minimalistic artwork and "emo writings". And also added occasional trumpet tunes simulating a "jazzy" feeling. Despite their not so well-known existence, this band was highly influential for the emo subgenre. You can even find traces of their sound in different 00s emo revival acts such as City of Caterpillar and The Pine. Pretty good stuff. Highly recommended. Enjoy!

Current - Discography CD!jl4HFbQJ!HxN7txEthxInBEwgGFEcVA3JGpyMdWDejobCEzIFKhM

Another marvelous discography disc released in 1998 by Council Records. Current was a short-lived yet prolific hardcore punk band that also toured the US twice, probably the only emo band of the time doing so. Their Coliseum LP (Council Records, 1993) is by far one of the best emo records ever released: it's passionate, full of rage, with emotionally-charged lyrics and a top-notch musical execution, taking the best elements of the first wave emo (Rites of Spring or Moss Icon) to the next level. Also, the characteristic change between slow and fast-paced moments in the emo subgenre is perfectly done here. Lastly, the CD compiles the aforementioned LP, their 2 7''s (Could I and Is 4) and splits with Chino Horde and Indian Summer and different compilation tracks. This is definitely a must have. Highly recommended. Enjoy!

Policy Of 3 - An Anthology 2xCD!a44B1ATY!8IXBDLUmiNZ117AiCJjPFe8hrm4hzMkok-HGuk0oPUE

One of my favorite american emo/hardcore bands of all time is finally here. Policy Of 3 (from now PO3) was a hardcore punk outfit from New Jersey and took their name from he ideas of a group of three farmers from China during the late 1930s who, through various nonviolent means, espoused increased power for peasants and independence from the wealthy landowning class. During their short-lived yet prolific existence, they released one self-titled, Dead Dog Summer LP and American Woodworking LP (their best work ever IMHO) and contributed tracks to many different compilations. Regarding the sound, PO3 managed perfectly the slow/fast tempos changes and crescendos of the emo subgenre with both political and personal lyrics. In fact, they were vegan straight edge and their political agenda made of them one of the most active hardcore punk bands of the era. This compilation was released in 2005 by Ebullition Records and contains everything that this band ever recorded plus a live performance in Dresden, Germany as bonus tracks. The song featured in Superpowers compilation, when they started the band as Matter Of Fact, is absent. Remember that this record was already featured here in the blog, so check it out. Lastly, I was told that an LP edition exists, but I'm not so sure about it. If you have enjoyed so far emo acts such as Moss Icon, Hoover and Still Life, PO3 is definitely for you. Highly recommended. Enjoy!

Julia - Complete Collection 

We finish this entry with another favorite of mine in this world of emocore. Julia was an emo/hardcore band from San Diego that existed between 1993 and 1998. Unlike their other local chaotic emo counterparts, Julia was more faithful to the straight emo subset. Nonetheless, this band also managed a frantic display of energy and intensity. It was so emotionally enough for making you cry thanks to their epic length songs, abstract lyrics and constant changing crescendos. No joking. Lastly, this file compiles everything that Julia ever recorded (self-titled 7" and LP, Kathy 7" (and its remaster), ...At The Window Of Vulnerability 7", track from the split with Sunshine and compilation tracks). Note that the live version of their last song ever, featured in the split with Sunshine, will make drown in tears a cynical, insensitive and cruel beast like me, for example. Ha ha ha. Don't complain if I didn't warn you. I do hope to see in the near future an official discography compilation of this band. It's worth it. Highly recommended. Enjoy and until next time. Kisses and hugs!