November 30, 2012

From Spain, With Love

Spain's Nashgul is a band I've been following for a little while now.  I got a copy of their 'El Dia Despues Al Fin De La Humidad' LP a while back and have been a fan ever since.  They play old school grindcore akin to early Napalm Death, Terrorizer, etc.  This is a copy of their recent split with fellow Spanish grinders, Malpractice Insurance.  Nashgul offers three tracks that sound like a continuation of their LP that I previously mentioned, and Malpractice Insurance offer up five tracks that are of a very similar style, with a little bit of mincecore influence.  Solid output by both bands, plus the artwork is awesome.  I believe To Live A Lie still has copies of the limited color left, so grab one while you can.


November 27, 2012

Grind The Pigs

There aren't too many bands that have an original take on a genre of music anymore.  This holds especially true for a genre such as grindcore, however I feel that +HIRS+ succeeds in being original, for the most part at least.  The band recently started up a Kickstarter to raise funds for their 'First 100 Songs' LP.  While I generally think Kickstarter's are completely stupid and bullshit in general, this is the best use of one I've seen thus far.  If you're unfamiliar with the band (like I was until recently) they are a two piece queer, cross-dressing, cop-hating grindcore band from Philadelphia.  The band is made up of a vocalist and a guitarist, and all of the drumming is done with a drum machine.  Seeing as I'm a drummer I generally frown on drum machines, but the programming here is so good that I can overlook it.  You'd be hard pressed to find a live drummer that can pull off this stuff perfectly.

As I've said already, this is the 'First 100 Songs' LP, which compiles all of the band's material up to this point.  The packaging for this thing is nothing short of spectacular so let's get started.  Both the front and back cover are screen printed, as well as the inside cover.

The dust sleeve that holds the record is screen printed on both sides as well.

Included are some stickers and a full color insert that has a collage of covers from all of the band's previous releases.

Lastly there is a screen printed poster that was included.

Finally, here is a picture of the entire package all together.

All and all this is one of the most well packaged records I've ever seen.  The music on this thing smokes too, so I'll be keeping up with the band more closely from now on.

November 25, 2012

Keeping Control

'Coping' is a hell of a vinyl debut by Toronto's Purity Control.  Released on Chris Colohan's label, High Anxiety Records, the band plays a very hardcore influenced style of grindcore.  Raw, stripped down grind played by hardcore kids - you won't find any hyperblasting technical shit here.  At least that's my take on it.  I know the band has released a few tapes prior to this 7" and have another 7" forthcoming, so I have some catching up to do.  The tapes are currently unavailable, but I wised up and preordered a copy of the upcoming 7" on the band's Bandcamp page.  I've listened to this thing multiple times a day since receiving it.  It's really well written and original (as far as grindcore goes).  Seriously check this band out if you're into grindcore, powerviolence/fastcore, or hardcore in general.

I was lucky enough to be one of the first 150 orders, so I got a copy on white vinyl.  The remainder of the press is on black.

November 21, 2012

Empty Void

What I have here may be the split of the year.  The recent(ish) Coke Bust/Vaccine split that was released by Refuse Records out of Europe.  The only thing that gets me more excited than when one of my favorite bands releases new music, is when two of my favorite bands are on the same release.  Such is the case with this split, as both Coke Bust and Vaccine are two of my favorite active bands.  If you're unfamiliar, Coke Bust plays DC hardcore, but at a lightning pace.  Vaccine plays a similar style, but has a more powerviolence influence.  On this split both bands bring some of their best material to date.  I seriously can't get enough of this split right now.  The U.S. press is due out soon on Drugged Conscience, and if the layout/art is any different I'm sure I'll grab a copy.  Limited to 210 copies on blue vinyl.

While I'm on the subject of Coke Bust I figure I'll post another of their records that I've acquired recently.  This is the band's demo pressed to wax, released by Headcount Records.  As far as I know there were a few different cover color/vinyl color combinations.  Mine is clear vinyl with a pink cover.  While I do like this demo, I like their later material a whole lot more.  The songs on display here aren't as fast or angry, but it's still really good.  This copy is hand-numbered out of 29/100.  Is this a record release version or something?  Does anyone know?

November 20, 2012


I feel like this post is long overdue, seeing as how the name of this blog is Utopia Banished.  Here is Napalm Death's fourth full length of the same name, second to feature Barney Greenway on vocals.  This record continues the band's move into more death metal territory, but still maintains the grindcore aspects of their original recordings.  This is probably my favorite ND record with Greenway on vocals.  Recently Earache put up some "unearthed" copies of this from the original press and I didn't hesitate to order a copy.  This thing is mint too.  Nice.

November 19, 2012


Subject to a large amount of hype currently, here is another release from Boston's No Tolerance.  This Discography LP was pressed by Quality Control out of the UK for the band's (you guessed it) recent UK tour.  This one compiles tracks from the Boston Straight Edge demo and No Remorse, No Tolerance 7", plus a previously unreleased track.  By now you've heard the demo and 7" so you should know what you're getting here.  The unreleased track, "Victimized," does leave a little to be desired.  The main riff is hard hitting, per usual for the band, but that's it.  It's pretty much 1:20 of the same riff throughout the whole song.  It's still a good track, just probably one of the band's weakest.

Quality Control recently sent out an email to be notified if the band had any leftovers, so when I received the message I sent my payment right away requesting a green copy.  No Tolerance is easily one of my favorite current bands, so ordering a copy of this was a no-brainer.  I then forwarded the message to my friend who lives one town over, and he did the same.  A few weeks later his package showed up some heavy damage to the corner.  The sleeve on his was mangled in one corner, but the record itself was mint.  The sender had even packaged it with two other leftover covers for padding, but those two were also messed up.  A day later my package shows up in perfect condition, and all three of the covers that were in mine were perfect as well.  So I gave one of my spares to my friend and all is right in the world.

November 13, 2012

The Fixer

A few demos I've acquired recently.  First up is the Oblivionation demo, which is easily my favorite of the bunch.  Featuring ex members of Out Cold, this band plays raging early Boston influenced hardcore.  This demo seriously fucking RIPS.  I believe the band did an initial run of 50 tapes, then Bleeding Edges from New Jersey took over and produced 200 more copies.  This tape is from the latter run.

Second demo is from Richmond's BARGE.  This is another very, very good demo.  Hardcore with a very big powerviolence feel to it.

Next up is a release from another Richmond band, Hard Stripes.  Featuring members of a lot of other current bands (Fire & Ice, etc.) Hard Stripes plays a more stripped down style of hardcore.  Very similar to a lot of the current Toronto crop - Urban Blight (I guess they're not really current anymore), Violent Future, etc.  The songs here are really good, but this tape sounds like shit.

Lastly is the No Rules demo by Boston/DC's Intent.  Boasting members of both Free Spirit and Give, this band sounds almost exactly like Free Spirit.  If you're at all a fan of Free Spirit this one is a no brainer for you.

November 12, 2012

Better Late Than Never

Here is the Insect Warfare/Hatred Surge split 7", and it's hard to believe that I haven't acquired a copy of this record until now.  It's one of those that you seem to see in most every distro since it's been kept in print pretty consistently since its original release in 2006.  Insect Warfare is one of the best grind bands in recent memory, having released one of the top grind LPs of all time (in my opinion) with the release of World Extermination.  The material on this split isn't quite up to that standard, but it shreds nonetheless.  On the flip side, Hatred Surge blasts through 6 tracks on their patented grindcore/powerviolence noise.  I use the word 'their' lightly since the band was just Alex Hughes at this point playing all instruments, but he had the help of another female on vocals for this recording (sorry, can't remember her name.  But no, it's not Faiza.)

From what I can tell this thing was only pressed once on black vinyl.  Every subsequent press has been on a different color, with black being available only from the first press.  Being the dumbass that I am, I felt the need to wait until I could secure a first press copy of this record before picking it up.  I don't really know why though.

November 9, 2012

Sick Of Talk

Here's a recent fanclub/bootleg pressing of the full 1987 Infest demo recording.  Let me first say that this is the longest demo recording of any band I've ever seen - 19 songs!  There are some bands that don't write that many songs in their entire existence, and Infest had that many on their fucking demo.  That's why this band rules.  As I've stated before, Infest is one of the most influential hardcore punk bands of all time, especially when you're talking about the powerviolence/fastcore sub-genre(s).

This boot is really well done.  Black vinyl with blank labels, and the cover folds out into this cool collage of show fliers in which the band played.  I'm always glad to add an Infest record to my collection and this one is no exception.  Whoever did this boot deserves a pat on the back.  Well done, whoever you are.

November 8, 2012

Future Corpses

Here is the Sexless//No Sex LP by Iron Lung, released in 2007 by Prank Records.  If you have been paying any sort of attention to powerviolence/fastcore for the past decade, you know who these guys are.  I'd say this LP is one of the best releases in the genre since it came out.  Original pressing on black vinyl.

November 7, 2012

Starting A Collection

I recently decided to start up an Extortion collection.  I haven't done this until now because I haven't had a good opportunity to do so, but I was able to acquire all of the following records through a recent trade.  I suppose it makes the most sense to go in chronological order, so here goes.

First up is the self titled 7".  This is a third press copy, which has a black sleeve.  The first press was released by Eerie Stratum Records and had a white sleeve I believe, and the second and third pressings were a split release by Fifth Column and Stained Circles.  The second press was on the 12" format, and the third was back to a 7".

Next up is the band's first LP, Degenerate.  This is a first press on green vinyl of 500 copies, released by Deep Six Records out of the US.  This is probably my favorite material form the band.

Next up of the records I got recently is the band's second LP, Sick.  Not as strong as their first long player, but not weak either.  This one was also released by Deep Six, limited to 1,000 copies on purple marble.

This is the Terminal Cancer 7" released by Way Back When Records and Short Fuse Records.  First press, out of 450 copies.  This is probably my second favorite release from the band.

And lastly is the Deep Six/Resist Records split release by the band, the Loose Screws 10".  While I still like this release, I'd have to say this is the band's weakest effort out of this lot of records.

I've got a long way to go in completing my collection for this band, but I'd say I'm off to a good start.

November 5, 2012

Book Burner In Ward 6

Here is the new Pig Destroyer record that I've been waiting for, Book Burner.  A lot of people have been complaining about the production on this one - mainly the drums.  In the past the production has been kind of raw but at the same time not sounding like shit, but on this one everything is pretty much crystal clear.  I'm sure the reason behind the drum sound on this record lies with the new drummer coming from the band Misery Index, which is a more death metal oriented band.  His drumming is fantastic, but his style is more fit for a death metal band.  Another issue for some people here are the vocals.  Again, they aren't as harsh as in previous recordings but they are by no means weak.  The actual songs on here are still really good.  Scott Hull truly is a riff machine.

After listening to this thing a few times through I'm honestly not sure what to think about it.  I do like it but I just don't know how it stacks up against past Pig Destroyer releases.  If you're a fan of grindcore at all, this record deserves at least a listen from you.

There were about 6 different variations of this to choose from, and as you can see I opted for the 180g black version.

While I'm on this band I figured I'd post two more record of theirs I got recently.  First up is their debut LP, Explosions In Ward 6.  This is classic Pig Destroyer.  Raw as hell, and just plain amazing.  This is my favorite style of grindcore.

Scored a green copy, limited to 200 pieces.

And last but not least, their split with the screamo band Orchid.  The band is on point here again, but I could really take or leave the Orchid side.  They're good at what they do, I'm just not the biggest fan.

Tour press, hand numbered out of 50 copies.