AusGrind: Australian underground grindcore, punk, doom and DIY culture.
15Dec/11Off

Lachlan’s best of 2011

Posted by Lachlan

Eagle fucking Twin at Manning Bar. Incredible.Well, 2011 was yet another year dominated by souless, watered down music in the mainstream music industry. Bland garage/indie and horrid R&B-pop were, once again, the order of the day. Perhaps more disturbingly, some styles previously associated with underground music continued to be watered-down and repackaged into acceptable pop culture products - namely hardcore and metalcore, who have now seemingly completed their transition into music forms completely devoid of any human emotion or feeling. The post-rock scene similarly provided an endless supply of bands that sound exactly the same.

In spite of my general misanthropy towards the wider music scene, there were still some more unique gems to be had if you dug deep enough. What's more, I really felt like this was a great year for the various underground music scenes in Australia. I feel like there are more bands of more diverse styles going the DIY path, putting on great shows and releasing original, soulful music.

What more, Sydney was lucky enough to have Black Wire Records to actually support underground punk, hardcore, crust, powerviolence and grind.

Here's what I dug in 2011.

Top 5 releases of 2011

  • The Devin Townsend Band - Deconstruction: Brilliant. Possible Devin Townsend's very best.
  • YOB - Atma: If anything just for Before We Dreamed of Two and Adrift in the Ocean. An incredible doom record.
  • Bjork - Biophilia: The best Bjork release since Homogenic.
  • Graveyard - Hisingen Blues: I struggle to think of a better rock album released in the last decade.
  • La Dispute - Wildlife: An honest and genuine emotional catharsis. Honest and genuine.

Top 5 grind(ish) releases of 2011

  • The Kill - Shower of BricksThe Kill - Shower of Bricks: the perfect distillation of intense grindcore.
  • The Reverend Jesse Custer - The Reverend Jesse Custer: sludgy, raging metallic grind and hardcore.
  • Fat Guy Wears Mystic Wolf Shirt - Counter Transference: techy polyrhythmic, sporadic math/grind bliss.
  • IDYLLS - Amps for God / Plague Hell: furious fucking grinding metallic hardcore.
  • Wormrot - Noise: blistering and intense.

The 10 albums I couldn't stop playing all year

  • Emily Haines and the Soft Skeleton - Knives Don't Have Your Back
  • Roots Manuva - Brand New Second Hand
  • YOB - Atma
  • Bohren & Der Club of Gore - Black Earth
  • Bohren & Der Club of Gore - Sunset Mission
  • Dax Riggs - Angel in the Dopesmoke (live bootleg)
  • Neil Young - Dead Man soundtrack
  • Neurosis - The Eye of Every Storm
  • Worlds End Girlfriend - Hurtbreak Wonderland
  • The Cinematic Orchestra - Every Day

The 10 Australian releases you really should have heard

  • Hydromedusa's debut albumHydromedusa - Self-titled: Adelaide stoner rock that just oozes bluesy class. (It's FREE! Get it!)
  • sleepmakeswaves - And So We Destroyed Everything: An interesting post-rock record? Well I never!
  • Pirate - Left of Mind: Fantastic Sydney instrumental prog.
  • An Emerald City - The Fourth: Technically Kiwi, but a great, cinematic album.
  • Tangled Throughts of Leaving - Deaden the Fields: These guys came outta nowhere (Perth)! Incredible progressive, piano-driven music mixed with progressive and post music.
  • Mother Mars - Fossil Fuel Blues: Perhaps Sydney's greatest stoner/desert rock band.
  • Arrowhead - Atomsmasher: Or perhaps these guys are?
  • Serious Beak - Huxwhukw: Okay it's my band, fuck you.
  • Squat Club - Corvus (remixed, remastered and re-released): Now with even more mind-bending polyrhythmic clarity!
  • Fat Guy Wears Mystic Wolf Shirt Counter - Transference

My favourite live shows of 2011

  • Portishead at Sydney Harvest Festival
  • Eagle Twin at Manning Bar
  • Gotye at Angel Place City Recital Hall
  • Kyuss at The Big Top
  • The Reverend Jesse Custer at Town Hall Hotel
  • Captain Cleanoff and Death-Cult Jock at Black Wire Records
  • Ruins, Darth Vegas, Slimey Things (Featherfest 2011) at TONE
  • Clagg and Agonhymn at The Pony
  • Space Bong, Looking Glass and Hydromedusa at The Sando

Australian grind hero of the year

  • Jack of Die Pigeon Die. Just an all around good bloke who never relents in his selfless passion to support Australian grindcore.

You disagree? Oh what a surprise! What did you guys dig this year? Was it a good year? A shit year?

16Aug/11Off

REVIEW: The Kill – Shower of Bricks

Posted by Lachlan

The Kill - Shower of Bricks MCD (Blastasfuk)The Kill put together Shower of Bricks for their recent USA tour. Featuring 6 tracks from their upcoming split 7 inch EP with none other than Captain Cleanoff, this MCD acts as some sort of cruel grinding cocktease for what is undoubtably going to be an incredible release.

If you know these guys there are no surprises here. For me, The Kill have always the pinnicle of pure, unabated grindcore. You won't find them mindless sitting on a two-chord punk riff for 30 seconds - and you definitely aren't about to be violated by a mid-song chugging breakdown. The Kill are all about speed, intensity and aggression. They strip grindcore down to its pure essentials,  then proceed to beat you over the heard with them in a blood-drunk brainsnap that is as maniac as it is brutal.

Shower of Bricks unequivocally delivers everything there is to love above the band -- Jay's punchy blastbeats hit with seemingly unwavering, inhumane power; Rob's tight shredding guitar work and Nik's ear-shredding, distorted mid-high screams, lyrics mixed with his style of benign humour:

What was that object that just hit my leg / first band of the gig and some bloke hits the deck / didn't see Insect Warfare from his hospital bed. (Passed Out)

The Kill - Shower of Bricks MCD (Blastasfuk)With this MCD The Kill have reminded us once again that they are pound-for-pound the most intense band on earth.

If you enjoy the likes of Insect Warfare, Gridlink, old Pig Destroyer or early Napalm Death and you haven't heard these guys; correct this disgression now.  Go buy this disc (and Hate Sessions and Blast Beat'n The Shit Outta PBS) from Blastasfuk and await their split with Captain Cleanoff with an appropriately hushed awe.

Listen to a song here.

Buy the album here (you might have to email old mate direct).

And come to Sydney again soon you jerks.

   

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