[Originally published: Issue #3, circa 1987]
BORN WITHOUT A FACE "Worship" EP
Four tracks of powerful hardcore which combine a heavy sound, throaty vocals, and very strange lyrics to make a good yet eerie record. Kind of noisy, but done in a way that adds rather than detracts from the overall sound. Good job. [TONY]
CASBAH "Infinite Pain" demo
This four track tape is truly excellent death metal from the land of the rising son. CASBAH is tight and heavy and the lyrics, in English, are of a better quality than your average "rotting corpse" fare. Despite the song titles ("Chain Song", "No More Slaughter", "Low Intensity Warfare", and the title track), the lyrics are not satanic. They're mostly ambiguous (at least to me!), but I can see some definite political statements. This is something quite original in death-metal. This is absolutely superb thrash. The tape is well produced and lyrics are included. This one is hard to pass up. [TONY]
CORRUPTION "Infest of Rage" demo
CORRUPTION is a hardcore band from Ocean County, with "Kid Wedge" on vocals, Billy Fiske on guitar, Brad Jackman on bass, and Steve Shears on drums.
Excellent hardcore that should appeal to crossover fans as well. Lyrics deal with serious as well as humorous topics. Eight great tracks featuring unbridled speed and power and superb vocals. An all-around cool band. Lyrics and flyers included. [TONY]
CRYPTIC SLAUGHTER "Money Talks" LP
I really liked this band's first LP for its power and the fact that there were often several rhythms in each song. Now, with their second LP, they keep all of the positive qualities of "Convicted" while showing a certain progression; that is, it's not the same old stuff rehashed. They have even added a brief guitar solo to two or three tracks which are done in a skillful way as to keep it from becoming boring. Lyrics deal with politics, world/national affairs, and personal politics. A very good album. [TONY]
DEVASTATION "A Creation Of Ripping Death" demo
DEVASTATION is a Chicago area death/thrash metal band that was formed in January of 1986 by drummer Pat Buckley and guitarist Erv Brautigam. The line-up is completed by Frank Ciamoi on bass, and new singer Bill. The deno was recorded with former vocalist Duane Rasmussen, who left to get married. The band is mainly influenced by AT WAR, SLAYER, MISFITS, and SAMHAIN, but Frank is into S.N.O.T., OUT OF ORDER, and GENERATION WASTE.
DEVASTATION "A Creation Of Ripping Death": Good, nightmarish thrash from this talented Chicago outfit. Eerie yet interesting tracks like "Cranial Hemorrage". "Nuclear Winter" amd two others. Recommended for death metallists only. [TONY]
DEHUMANIZERS "Kill Lou Guzzo" EP
Wow! This 7" shows excellent hardcore which draws in influences from countless other forms of music. All five tracks are richly diverse and very, very enjoyable. While "Everybody Fight" and "Godmen Of The Future" opt for uncompromising hardcore, "Sing Thru Me" and "Grandma (I'm A Drug Fiend)" display more melodious sounds and great vocals. The title track is really good, with its thrash-thrash-thrash format and hilarious lyrics. Hats off to great MUSIC and originality! (Subcore Records) [TONY]
HOLY TERROR "Terror and Submission" advance tape
HOLY TERROR is a thrash/ power metal band from California. The line-up consists of Kurt Kilfelt on guitars, Keith Deen on vocals, Mike Alvord on guitar and vocals, Floyd Flanary on bass, and Joe Mitchell, who replaced Jack Schwartz, on drums. Their debut album, "Terror and Submission", will be released soon on Music For Nations. No American record deal has been signed yet, so check out the import bin at your local record store.
HOLY TERROR "Terror and Submission" advance tape: This is a fine metal band that alternates between thrash tunes like EXODUS, and power metal tunes in the style of PRIEST and MAIDEN. The vocals are pretty good - no "grunting demons" here. Some tracks, like "Mortal Fear", have a riff that stays on your brain for a long time. Definitely worth checking out, if you'e into it. The high quality, long (9 tracks) tape costs only $4. Additional merchandise includes bumper stickers ($.50), pictures ($1), and tour shirts ($8). [TONY]
LAST OPTION #2 demo
LAST OPTION was formed in February, 1985. They want to work to achieve not only a better scene, but a better world. They do this by attending protests (underground nuclear testing, No Business As Usual, etc.) and educating themselves and others. They would like to meet and correspond with others who share their beliefs (Anarcho-pacifism).
LAST OPTION demo #2: Crunching hardcore with sincere lyrics from this highly talented Arizona outfit. This is straight-forward HC with great vocals and some of the most powerful riffs that will ever jolt your cranium. A glimpse of great things to come. [TONY]
PRONG "Primitive Origins" LP
This is a band that has gained a lot of respect and critical acclaim from their demos and select live performances in the New York area. PRONG does what they do best on this seven track effort: a comfortable but not patronizing blend of hardcore, metal and industrial sounds. (Yes, industrial. That doesn't aean they use power drills and buzzsaws, it just provides the guitar with a unique sound). This whole album gleams with originality and is very refreshing. Oh yeah, a cool cover by the art god Sean Taggart. Available on Mr. Bear Records. [TONY]
SADUS "D.T.P." demo
SADUS is a speed metal band from California that was formed in 1984 under the monicker D.T.P. The line-up is Barren Travis on lead guitar and vocals, Rob Moore also on lead guitar, Steve DiGiorgio on bass, and Jon Allen on drums.
SADUS "D.T.P.": Killing thrash for die-hard speed metal freaks only. Burning speed and screeching vocals come together to make a good tape, Among the choice cuts are "Sadus Attack" and "Fight Or Die". The demo is available for $5 + 2 stamps. T-shirts are $10, and stickers are 3 for $1. Overseas add $2 to all orders. [TONY]
SCRAM "Stand Up" LP
I seriously believe Philadelphia will soon be recognized as THE national hotbed of underground music, and SCRAM is definitely on of the leaders in this group of fine, talented musicians. SCRAM's only other vinyl outings were on compilations, I believe. They had one track on the immenseiy popular 4-song Philly compilation "That Was Then, This Is Now", and one on the more recent Positive Force compilation, "Another Shot for Bracken." And now, finally, they have an LP out! The Philly scenesters well know, SCRAM has been a definite mainstay in our scene for a few years new, delighting fans with their very desirable sounding blend of reggae, Ska, and hardcore. This well-produced disc shows off their considerable talent, bringing thea to the recognition of the rest of the U.S. Tracks which stand out are their immensely popular anthem ''Stand Up", an excellent cover of Join Lennon's "Imagine" (better than the original?), and the love song "Something To Cling To." Powerful stuff throughout! Well worth the wait. (BYO Records)[MICKEY]
GOVERNMENT ISSUE "Government Issue Live" LP
Hot dog! One of my (and many others') all-time faorites. This LP is fabulous! An absolute must for anyone who's ever liked G.I. Among the studio-quality classics recorded live mainly on the East coast between 1982 and 1985 are "Hall Of Fame" (my personal favorite), "Fun and Games", "Hour Of One", and "Understand". It also includes two interviews. Put simply, GET IT! You really won't be sorry. (Mystic Records) [MICKEY]
HOMO PICNIC "Days of Grey" LP
The past year has been very good for Philly bands - yet another strong(!) debut LP for a long time Philly favorite. HOMO PICNIC have also been rocking the scene with their distinct sound for quite a while, and hopefully it will be appreciated by other scenes once they hear this LP. It's great - no less. They describe themselves as rich kids playing heavy metal, but their sound is far from metal. It's also far from hardcore. It's not crossover, either. I'd say this trio takes influences froa many different types of music, coming together to form an almost indescribable blend - powerful, melodious, complicated stuff. The vocals don't really fit in with the lyrics and music. But this is a small consideration, as the MUSIC totally overshadows the vocals anyway. Send the lyric sheet too - great, personal stuff in the same vein as EMBRACE and DAG NASTY. I recommend this LP thoroughly. (Plus Records) [MICKEY]
RITES OF SPRING "All Through a Life" EP
No, no - they're still defunct. This is a posthumous release, possibly to satisfy fans, for one release wasn't enougn to quench their desire for more from this once great D.C. band. But, this is definitely net a swan song. It's comparable to MINOR THREAT'S "Salad Says: EP, but only the fact that Dischord released both after the bands broke up. MINOR THREAT's EP had them go out with one last bang - their best release. But unfortunately, RITES OF SPRING didn't follow this example. The sound, I feel, is similar to their Dischord LP, but the power is lessened - more subdued. This may appeal to some people - not to me. Their non-melodious sound interests me, but doesn't keep me amused. The lyrics seem to be just a little too poetic for my taste. I'n not going to play games. I really feel my musical tastes are mature, but maybe not mature enough. (Dischord Records) [MICKEY]
SUBURBAN UPRISE "Live Demo II" demo
SUBURBAN UPRISE is a fairly new band from Suburban Philadelphia. They've just starting to play out. They're sort of controversial, too. An unabashed skinhead band, Maximum Rock N Roll's Tim Yonannan refused to run an interview with them because they're skins, though their drummer has assured me that they're neither racists nor Nazis. Martin Sprouse later wrote to S.U. informing them that they would run the interview.
SUBURBAN UPRISE Live Demo II : This is a live tape done at Trenton, New Jersey's City Gardens earlier this month, during what I'd assume was S.U.'s first real big gig. For a demo, the sound quality is great, and for a live set, it's as tight as they come. They sound very original - not what you'd expect from a skinhead band in that the music is very melodious and the vocals are either sung or spoken, not growled or yelled. Although I don't agree with some of their ideas (in one song, "Land Of The Free", they suggest that those who don't want to fight for tne U.S. should get out), that does not influence my opinion of these guys. They're HOT! They rock! They mosh! Very good tunes like "No More Favors" and "Skinhead March". They will make a name, and soon, I predict. Only $1.50. [MICKEY]
TERRORIZER '87 rehearsal demo
TERRORIZER is a 4-piece band from Southern California featuring Oscar on guitar and vocals, Jesse on guitar, Pete on drums, and Garvey on bass. They formed in early 1986 and are influenced by bands like early DISCHARGE and SUICIDAL TENDENCIES. Their lyrics deal with a large variety of subjects, from life and death to the effects of nuclear power to world issues today. However, they definitely have nothing to do with any type of religion whatsoever.
TERRORIZER rehersal/dem '87: Ultra heavy thrash that sounds like SLAYER gone hardcore. Much better than your normal thrash band, providing the death metal-style vocals and playing, while covering various lyrical topics. [TONY]
UNITED "Beast Dominate" demo
UNITED is a Japanese thrasn metal band that formed in 1981. The new line-up is Yoshiyuki Furui on vocals, Masaki Hara on guitar, Iwao Furusawa on guitar, Akihiro Yokoyasa on bass, and Tetsuo Takizawa on drusss. They appeared on a Japanese compilation album, and have just released their second demo/EP.
UNITED "Beast Dominate": Four pretty cool tunes in the ANTHRAX - S.O.D. vein. "S.R.S." and "Do You Wanna Die?" are mid-paced tunes, while "Holy Dive Screamer" and "Combat" are more powerful and a little catchier. An added attraction are the clear-English vocals. The 7" EP is $8 + $3 postage, while the tape of the EP is $4 + $3 postage. [TONY]
VERBAL ABUSE "Rocks Your Liver" LP
This album left me satisfied and disappointed at the same time. Satisfied, when they crank out such gems as "Set Me Free", "Best Friends", and the title track. But disappointed, when they deliver far below what they're capable of. I mean, they're talented musicians, and Scotty Wilkins' vocals are great, but a few tracks are just lackluster. I still like this band, but I hope their next LP will allow them to reach their potential. [TONY]
VISUAL DIFFERENCE demo
VISUAL DIFFERENCE is a hardcore band from Mesa, Arizona. They've been together for about a year. The current line-up is Dave Payne on guitar, Steve Baily on drums, Eric Oxbolow on bass, and Steve Difference on vocals. The name arises from how we all look different on the outside, yet we're all the same on the inside. Their songs deal with everyday problems and how to deal with this in a positive way. They stand strong in what they believe in. They had a demo out entitled "Live For Life", which is now out of print, but they plan another demo soon. [TONY]
V/A "Brainwashed Into Submission" tape
A really cool comp featuring 14 bands performing 33 songs. The sound quality varies, but most of the time it's above average. There are a lot of good bands here, especially TRANSGRESSOR and LOSS FOR WORDS. Some of the other bands are GENERATION WASTE, BLOODCUM, arid NECROPOLIS. A thoroughly enjoyable tape which promises a bright future for many of these young bands. Also a good sampler of new thrash-core bands. [TONY]
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