Better Late than Dead…Val’s Best of 2012

Lost Tribe


With this BEST OF 2012 I tried really hard not to look at any other Top 10 lists before I compiled my own.  I didn’t want to be influenced at all by the opinions of others, even those people that I respect and trust musically.  I only looked back thru the stacks next to my record player and tried to find those that stuck with me most over the past year.  Yeah, its a bit nostalgic with more than one band that have been non-existent for the past 20 years, and more than a couple that have been around for more than 10 years. But, that being said, there are some new bands here as well that have made an impact with me as well so hopefully it doesn’t come off as some backward glance of some punk over 40….. (Val)


  1. TRAGEDY – Darker Days Ahead LP  – Layered and complex, dark and brooding with masterful riffing just as you would expect from TRAGEDY.  I think I might like this one best of all their material, which is saying something because every one of the records in their back catalog have been amazing.  Down tempo and heavy as all hell, with tons of texture that makes this an instant classic for me.  Too many people these days seem ready to pass judgement upon TRAGEDY but they seem to me to be at the top of their game.  Stoked to see this material live this summer at Chaos in Tejas!


  1. DEVIATED INSTINCT – Liberty Crawls to the Sanctuary of Slaves LP – Anyone who knows me knows that I am a HUGE DEVIATED INSTINCT fan.  Now most of their early material had a ‘loose’ yet extremely potent intensity to it.  It wasn’t that it was sloppy, though some might accuse it of just that, it was more like they probably didn’t want to turn in a recording that was too tight and be branded as sounding over-produced.  I always got a sense that what I was hearing was more live than it let on.  That they simply got up and did it with no mucking about.  This LP sees the lads return to offer up their current take on it all and it still retains that immediacy but also sounds like they worked to polish just enough of the rough off and the additional effort sounds epic indeed.  Crushing and sludgy in parts, driving and bombastic in others, all while still sounding like themselves.  I hope they keep it going and do more soon.


  1. LOST TRIBE – Unsound/Listless Mind EP – This little jem of a 7 inch takes its cues from the likes of WIPERS, 45 GRAVE and early TSOL.  Haunting deathrock that sounds timeless and vibrant due to the interesting guitar riffs and creepy backing keyboards.  This is one of those records that would just remain on my turntable for days at a time.  Find one and see for yourself.


  1. ANTISECT – 4 Minutes Past Midnight 10”  – Technically I guess this came out back in 2011 but I didn’t get my copy until this summer when I got to see ANTISECT live so I am going to include it here.  Two songs from the past getting the update they have long deserved and it sounds great.  Sounds just as urgent as it did over 25 years ago.  ANTISECT warned us then that this world was coming and here they let us know that there is still a need for everyone to do what they can.  Passionate and succinct as always.


  1. MAUSER – Isolation 12” – A modern hardcore punk classic from a younger band spits forth a powerful venom andthat has been killing it for the past couple of years.  With the rampaging chaos of DISORDER,  and the sheer ferocity of ANTI-CIMEX, but with an updated sound that lets you know that you are dealing with something that is lurking out there right now.  Certainly this has a foot planted in the noise core so popular today but this stands head and shoulders above most of what is out there.  Crucial.


  1. CONFRONT – Curtain of Intense Attack EP  – FUCK YEAH!!!  This is the sheeit!  Kinda goofy keyboards intro into one of the best records out of Japan this year.  MAIDEN drenched guitars lead then to powerful DEATH SIDE styled hardcore punk.  There is some weird experimentation on this that brings to mind PAINTBOX but this has a bit more metal than that.  Throw in some classic gang vocals like only the Japanese can make sound cool and its like a little smorgasbord of all the things that I love.  FUCKING GREAT.


  1. MARTYRDOD – Paranoia LP – I freaked when I first heard their “In Extremis” LP.  It was the best of melodic black metal and Swedish kang forged into something dark and moving. This LP takes that even further, with killer songwriting and powerful, angry vocals that show influence from across the heavy music spectrum but remains unique and instantly recognizable.  Fucking amazing!


  1. NUKLEER BLAST SUNTAN – The Wheel of Fate is Turning EP – Frenzied HC punk that is raw and insane.  The guitars sound so mind numbing and noisy without ever loosing their sense of direction.  And not your typical power chord kinda stuff, either.  The drums are so fast that it sometimes sounds like it was recorded at some other speed but never delves into grinding or blastbeats, just pure punk mayhem.  With bass lines that throb incessantly and snarling vocals, this EP sets the mark high and makes me want another one soon from these guys.


  1. BRAIN KILLER – S/T EP – Raw and noisy hardcore punk outta Boston that brings as disparate bands as INVASION and DEATHREAT to mind at the same time.  Blistering and to the point.


  1. INFERNOH – War Tjard 12” – Hold on to your skin cause INFERNOH is here to fucking melt your face off with pure, rampaging hardcore d-beat fury.  Sure its a genre with a lot of clones these days but these tracks reveal guys that take it to heart and make it sound fun and raucous but tight as shit and never sound generic.  Total scandi-raw-crust mayhem in the vein of CRUDE SS and early ANTI-CIMEX. With members from FY FAN, HERATYS, and SKITKIDS, (had to do the name drop) its no wonder that its this good.  Noisy, but not too.  Gnarly, but never sloppy.  Fast parts, some more mid tempo parts, killer air raid leads over absolutely crushing riffs.  Killer cover art work that brings to mind the creepy scratchings of Blinko.  Essential.  One of the bands I am most looking forward to at Chaos in Tejas this year.  MANGEL!


Honorable mentions include, NO STATIK LP, WOLFBRIGADE LP, VENDETTA EP,, EFFLUXXUS 12”, OILTANKER/NO TOMORROW Split LP, KRANG LP….it has been a hellava year and I’m sure I will find something that I somehow overlooked but whatever.




~ by thrashpunx on February 14, 2013.

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