AusGrind: Australian underground grindcore, punk, doom and DIY culture.

REVIEW: Gaza – No Absolutes in Human Suffering

Posted by Lachlan

Gaza - No Absolutes In Human SufferingOh man. What an intense album.

Gaza's 'No Absolutes In Human Suffering' is an excursion of dissonance, fury and blastbeats; a sludge-and-grind hybrid is delivered with seething nihilism and apocalyptic despair.

The group combine the grooving polyrhythms of Botch, the jarring fury of Converge and Coalesce, the sludgy hate of Eyehategod and the sheer blasting intensity of Pig Destroyer.  The result is visceral and intense; breathing new life into some of the more tired aspects of hardcore.

What makes this album so powerful are occasional departures into reflective passages - like the ending half of When They Beg, which drifts off into a warm, droning meditation, boasting a melody that reminds me more of Genghis Tron's prettier moments.

The emotional impact of segments like this really set the band apart from many of the one-dimensional / one-mood bands I've turned away from in the past. It's a little concept called dynamics. You want to create the heaviest riff ever written? Well, write it, and then set it in the middle of a beautiful and delicate 10 minute major key dream piece. Its impact will be multiplied tenfold.

While I've been stuck in the mindset that most modern hardcore and grind is stagnant and uninteresting, bands like IDYLLS, In Trenches and Gaza are out to prove me wrong - and they're doing it quite well.

With 'No Absolutes In Human Suffering', Gaza have landed themselves one of the better releases in the genre for 2012.

Definitely an album worth checking out. Go stream the whole thing.


Taking over FBI Radio – Monday 23rd May

Posted by Matt

Lachlan and myself jumped at the opportunity to spin some grindcore in the name of AusGrind late one night on FBI Radio, Sydney's best radio station by miles (for example, album of the week this week is the new Battles album, holy shit so happy). So anyway we set out to inform the general Sydney public of the awesomeness of grindcore, and although my mum still hates it we had a ball.

With Scott Fitzsimons manning the buttons we played a nice cross section of grind with a few other random gems thrown in for good measure and plenty of shameless self promotion. You can now stream the full two hour show below (language warning).

Segression - Never Dead
Death-Cult Jock - War Through Other Means
Captain Cleanoff - Chemical Imbalance
Pig Destroyer - Cheerleader Corpses
Gronibard - March of The Gronibard
thedowngoing - Bad Machette
Ether Rag - V
Battle Pope - Cocaine Yeeha Motherfucker Yeah
Ebolie - 1800 Fashioncore Kids Helpline
Michael Crafter - On Tour A Job Is Called A Gig
Family Man - Left For Dead
Naked City - Skatekey
Blood Duster - Instrumental
Nowyourefucked - Gary Coleman
Agents Of Abhorrence - Agents Of The Sun
Orlacs Hande - ?
Kill the Client - Moneywhore
Genghis Tron - Rock Candy
Acid Tiger - Feel It
White Male Dumbinance - Forced Vengeance
Discordance Axis - Castration Rite
thedowngoing - Iambecome
Hailstones Kill 200 - I Am Not Afraid
Log - Dirt House Boogie
Comadre - Sabado Gigante!
Fuck... I'm Dead - Barefoot And Shitfaced
Aborted - Surprise! You're Dead (Faith No More cover)
Reuben Ingall - Flight Of The Basement Bee
Halo of Knives - Watch The Red Devil Burn
Insect Warfare - Mind Ripper
Ironhide - Doom
Dillinger Escape Plan - Mullet Burden
Damaged - Nails
Tyler, The Creator - Yonkers
Naked City - Batman
Michael Crafter - Drum Circle
Throwdown - Sure Hope It Feels Good
Mindsnare - Bulldozed
Agents Of Abhorrence - Sentimentality & Nostalgia
The Atomic Bitchwax - The Local Fuzz

Full info on the Dead Air website or you can stream the whole program below.


What is to become of Sydney University’s Manning Bar?

Posted by Lachlan

What is to become of Sydney University's Manning Bar? That is the question circling around my head at the moment.

There were rumors a few months ago that Sydney University's Student Union (USU) had voted to ban certain styles of music of events from using Manning Bar - and now it looks like those rumors are true.

An article today in the Sydney Morning Herald confirms as much - that there will be a "ban" on music that is considered "too risky". The example given is Necro; a (very crappy) 'gore rapper' who raps about violence and death.

Why the ban? Because Sydney University wants to re-brand itself as an "Ivy League" institution, and are currently reviewing the music policy to curb "anti-social behaviour and alcohol".

Now let's get back to realism here; with a capacity of around 1,000, the Manning Bar is one of the only reasonable venues left in Sydney for international bands, and possibly the only venue of it's size with very good live sound quality. This is very, very disheartening news. It should be more than apparent that metal, grind, hardcore (and so on) will more than likely be facing the axe.

In the next few months alone the Manning Bar will host Meshuggah, Isis, Baroness, Converge, Genghis Tron and Between the Buried and Me. If we lose this venue, both Australian bands and countless international acts are going to have a very, very hard time playing in Sydney. The only equivalent venues left that come to mind is the UNSW Roundhouse - which as AWFUL live sound.

I can barely recall how many dozens of awesome shows I've been to at Manning Bar. All age shows have already been banned. Very, very sad news. Let's hope nothing comes of it.

Link to SMH article.
Link to Mess + Noise article.


Lachlan’s top 10 albums of 2008 (and biggest disappointments)

Posted by Lachlan

As promised, here is my narcissism:

1. Cult of Luna – Eternal Kingdom: A fantastic sludge influenced post-metal album with absolutely CRUSHING production. Cult of Luna has emerged as one of my favourite bands of 2008, and while I slightly prefer Somewhere Along the Highway over Eternal Kingdom, this is nothing less than another outstanding album from the consistent Finnish band.

One of the things I am most looking forward to for 2009 is being able to see these guys live.

2. Secret Chiefs 3 – Xaphan: What can be said about the brilliant Secret Chiefs 3? They are a collection of immensely talented musician with a penchant for exploring Eastern influenced polyrhythmic music. I saw these guys in 2007 at The Factory without having heard any of their material and without a doubt it was one of my favourite live shows to date.

In my opinion this is the album where they finally found their own unique sound; it represents the culmination of everything they’ve done to date and far outstrips their previous albums – solid though they may be. The production is fantastic and the rhythms and instrumentation mind-bending. There is not a dull moment or a dud song. This is simply awe-inspiring.

3. This Will Destroy You - This Will Destroy You: I got into post-rock pretty heavily this year too. Without a doubt the stand out for me for the genre was This Will Destroy You: warm synth-driven rolling post-rock with some nice electronic elements. I can remember the first time I put this on my stereo down the coast under the influence of MDMA. My mind has never been the same.

4. Gridlink - Amber Gray: This is fucking grindcore. In a year where I was finding it hard and harder to be inspired by grind, Gridlink single handedly reinvigorated my love for the genre. Totally unedited, relentless, break-neck, hyper-violent, throat-ripping, guitar-shredding, face-raping, skull-fucking aggressive grindcore. This may be the single most intense piece of music I have ever heard – and it’s achieved by a fucking three-piece.

If the likes of Napalm Death and Terrorizer had heard this back in the day, they would’ve probably packed up and gone home. This has raised the bar in terms of aural aggression; fuck all of that technical death metal retarded triggered bullshit – this is the real deal. All the violence of the world in an 11:48 minute MCD, and I wouldn’t want it a second longer.

5. Venetian Snares – Detrimentalist: I’m an absolutely huge fan of Venetian Snares and his retardedly complex 7/4 breakbeat mash-up insanity. This album sees Aaron Funk cycle through a large number of the various sounds and styles he has used over his career. The result is an absolutely killer release that manages to avoid sounding stale or monotonous. This album comes a close third to his two classical-breakcore releases.

If you’re a grind head and haven’t heard breakcore, get out there and hear yourself some Venetian Snares. Try My Downfall. The music is as intense as it gets, and it’s no coincidence that all the breakcore fans and producers I’ve spoken to typically enjoy extreme grind.

6. Meshuggah – Obzen: Thank God. A new Meshuggah album. This album is more aggressive and up-tempo than Nothing and Catch 33 – just what so many old school fans had been pining for. These guys can really do no wrong, and while I didn’t enjoy this as much as I, Chaosphere or Catch 33, it’s still one hell of a fucking trip to psychedelic mind fucking metallic mayhem.

7. The Mars Volta – The Bedlam in Goliath: No, it’s no Deloused or Francis the Mute. No my favourite drummer in the world Jon Theodore does not play on it. This album may lack a few of the elements that made me fall in love with this band – such as extended passages of ambient and the ability for them to simply sit on a killer groove – but this stands out as a very solid up-tempo rock album.

The new drummer certainly has obscene drumming skills, but I’d like to see him try and play with a bit more feel and groove on the next album. I noticed the 2 times I’ve seen him play live he really lacks the ability to play with dynamics. He simply cannot build up songs or segments from ultra-soft to loud-as-fuck. He has too levels: fucking loud and not quite so fucking loud. Still this is a solid album with some memorable songs and deserves praise.

8. A Storm of Light – And We Wept the Black Ocean Within: A slow, dark, depressing and suffocating piece of sludge, drone and doom – in fact this is so fucking dark is could probably pull you into a black whole. Very Neurosis inspired (since it has Neurosis and Red Sparrows members in it) and that’s just the way I like it.

9. Kill the Client – Cleptocracy: There are essentially two bands playing old-school grindcore and obliterating the shit out of the originators: Insect Warfare and Kill the Client. Kill the Client have amazingly upped their already overwhelming aggression on their second full lengths while still managing to deliver memorable songs. I hope to see these guys down in Australia some day.

10. Ef - I Am Responsible: To be honest I’m not 100% sure this deserves to be here since I only heard this album a week ago. It’s soft, ambient post-rock with plenty of piano and impressive orchestration.

The Biggest Disappointments of 2008

Fuck these goddamn safe-playing pandering shitheads - especially bands as fucking innovative and original as the first two. Way to ruin a good thing.

1. Genghis Tron – Board Up The House: So guys, how about instead of playing that fun and unique mash-up electro-grind breakbeat crazy genre-hopping insanity we called music on our first EP we become a Converge clone band? Better yet – let’s totally water down all the electronic elements and make the drums sound like real drums. Wont THAT make us stand out?

This is in my opinion a total fucking bullshit cash-grab for Converge fans. If Cloak of Love deserves 100% and Dead Mountain Mouth possibly around 80%, this probably lands at 35%. Pathetic guys. Just pathetic.

2. The Dillinger Escape Plan – Ire Works: Well I guess it was inevitable when you lose 2 key song-writers. Still, Dillinger showed that they essentially have no new ideas whats so ever. They rehashed Miss Machine and throw in two really shitty pop/rock songs to build up some cash and some 16 year olds in their fan base. Having seem them this year the change in crowd was remarkable. No one had a clue about most the Miss Machine songs, let alone anything earlier.

The one redeeming song on the album is the final one, which I actually quite enjoy. He’s hoping that Gil can input something fresh into the writing process this time around. I’m not asking for Calculating Infinity, I just want to hear something fucking new – not just a rehash.

3. Gronibard – We Are French, Fukk You: What shitheads man. I didn’t even hear that this album was coming out. Their self titled debut is one of my favourite grind albums every. It’s catchy as fuck, has enormous production values and the least serious thing on earth. In short it is a candidate for the most awesome grind album ever.

This album is almost identical – if you removed all the fun, humour, catchy riffs, blast beats and break downs and instead replaced all of that with boring mid-paced gore (not even gore/grind). Dudes, if this is what you have to offer after fucking 6 years, hang it up.


The Best of 2008 – Lachlan

Posted by Lachlan

Tim from EbolieThe year is nearly fucking over and I am glad. I am done with this year. Despite that pessimism, there have been a few highlights. Doing this AusGrind thang with Matt has been pretty fun as we slowly build up our jerk base.

We really hit our stride this year with Grindhead Records and released some of my favourite albums to date; Gruesome Stuff Relish, Pathology, Beyond Terror Beyond Grace’s amazing full length, Long Pig and Sound of Detestation. We also put on an amazingly successful Slaughterfest II, with the Canberra show selling out at The Basement. Thank you to everyone who helped out or came to a show.

Ebolie recorded a full length album that I am very proud of. Kill A Celebrity managed to put together a split with my favourite chaotic grinders Krupskaya. I got to see Pig Destroyer, Meshuggah, The Mars Volta, Grave, Against Me!, Graf Orlock and many others, and even got to play with the mighty Insect Warfare - twice. Meanwhile local Sydney bands like The Crooked Fiddle Band, Hospital the Musical, The Bakery, Pirate, Squid, Club Consolador and Squat Club reinvigorated my love for the local music scene.

All I want to do with my life is play music and tour, so lets hope 2009 brings more of that. I’m a total fucking narcissist, so while here are my top albums of the year, expect a more verbose bat-off in the next few days with a description of each.

What albums did you guys really enjoy – inside and out of the grind scene? I’m curious.

Lachlan’s top 10 albums for 2008

1. Cult of Luna - Eternal Kingdom
2. Secret Chiefs 3 - Xaphan
3. This Will Destroy You - This Will Destroy You
4. Gridlink - Amber Gray
5. Venetian Snares - Detrimentalist

6. Meshuggah - Obzen

7. The Mars Volta - The Bedlam in Goliath

8. A Storm of Light - And We Wept the Black Ocean Within

9. Kill the Client - Cleptocracy
10. Ef - I Am Responsible

Lachlan’s top 5 grind albums for 2008

1. Gridlink – Amber Gray
2. Kill the Client – Cleptocracy
3. Agents of Abhorrence – Earth.Water.Sun
4. The Kill – Hate Sessions
5. Phobia – 22 Random Acts of Violence

Lachlan’s top 5 Australian albums for 2008

1. The Bakery – The Bakery and the Beast
2. Pirate – Demo
3. The Kill – Hate Sessions
4. Agents of Abhorrence – Earth.Water.Sun
5. Sleepmakeswaves – In Today Already Walks Tomorrow

The Biggest Disappointments of 2008

Fuck these goddamn safe-playing pandering shitheads - especially bands as fucking innovative and original as the first two. Way to ruin a good thing.

1. Genghis Tron – Board Up The House
2. The Dillinger Escape Plan – Ire Works
3. Gronibard – We Are French, Fukk You



New Vinyl Releases

Posted by Matt

Cannibis Corpse - Robotic Empire has just released the second album from Richmond, VA's Cannabis Corpse entitled "Tube of the Resinated". The LP has some pretty over the top packaging and even has a laser cut weed leaf inserted into the vinyl.

Genghis Tron - Beginning in August and continuing through the rest of 2008, Genghis Tron will be releasing five 12" remix records on five different record labels (Temporary Residence Ltd., Lovepump United, Relapse Records, Anticon Records, and Crucial Blast respectively). Each volume will be limited to 1,000, pressed on colored vinyl. Board Up The House cover artist, Jon Beasley, will also be providing each remix album with alternative artwork.

Each record will feature a select number of Genghis Tron songs taken from Board Up The House, remixed by a variety of artists. Some of the participating artists include Black Moth Super Rainbow, Ulver, Dntel, Telefon Tel Aviv, Steve Moore, Jesu/Justin Broadrick, Danny Lohner, Rob Crow, Subtle, Odd Nosdam, Circle, Tim Hecker, and many more to be announced soon.

Temporary Residence Limited is slated to release volume one of the series in September, with pre-order beginning in July.

Off Minor - The new Off Minor record, "Some Blood" is now available for preorder from Paramnesia Records. The first 100 orders will receive a special packaging edition and original hand screened art by Nishat Akhtar. This album is available on 140 gram colored vinyl (blue or red) and includes a free MP3 download.

Pelican - Aaron Turner (ISIS) has announced in his blog that he will be doing a drawing for a forthcoming Pelican / These Arms Are Snakes Split 7" to be released on Hydra Head.

Coliseum - Auxiliary Records is reissuing Coliseum's "Goddamage" EP as a limited edition 2x7" packaged in a gatefold jacket. This is limited to 1,000 copies on three variations of colored vinyl: 200 on yellow & white marble / yellow & black marble, 300 one yellow / one white, and 500 both yellow. The first 200 preorders come with a free canvas patch, and there are some t-shirt packages available as well. Preorders ship August 12.

Keep up to date with all vinyl news.

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