To kick off the week, DeHud has already posted a short piece on the excellent Wallrides from Sweden. And now, to act as the jam on this punk rock toast, I am going to introduce you to some more excellent releases that have emerged from up north in Sweden, courtesy of Monument Records. It goes to prove that the country is capable of far more than just churning our D-Beat bands!
Let’s kick things off with a real blast in the face wake up call – Final Exit, which is a band that has spun off from another Swedish outfit, Refused. A 5 – piece, they got together in order to go ‘back to the roots’ and play basic, straight ahead hardcore during their four year career. As the label describes them:
“Sometimes they played naked and sometimes they even invited the kids to take the moshpit out to the street. One can say that if the members controlled their madness and rage in their regular bands they got out of control totally in Final Exit”.
Moving on, the next band I want to feature is a really solid sounding band called Artificial Conspiracy, whose 2 tracker, ‘Dead Eyes’, is released this month on Monument.
Heavy, hard and reminiscent of a slice of NYHC put through a blender with Prong, this ep pleases and leaves the listener shaken as their senses are assaulted by a wall of bass and guitar whilst hard drum slaps complete the assault.
Outlast! is next. A long established straightedge band in Sweden, Monument have collected and released their discography in a – get this – 57 track LP, of which sadly only two tracks preview here.
Proffering a hard-hitting, punchy hardcore sound with crunchy guitar and hooligan chanted choruses, they make for a rousing listen. As the song says, ‘Get into the Pit!’
No Omega have released an album entitled ‘Metropolis’ which is a heavy, heavy effort that introduces anguished sounding vocals, thunderously heavy guitar and bass that makes the ceiling plaster crack, and variations in pace that keep the listener intrigued. My only criticism of this storming release is that the vocals tend to be a bit on the ‘screamy’ side for me, which is not something I find it easy to listen to. But a varied, melodic and hard hitting effort nonetheless.
Finally, in order to really make your Monday morning complete, here is Dead Reprise. Their second lp, ‘The Unveiling’ showcases a savage hardcore attack with a hint of that famous Swedish D-Beat sound, but made contemporary by the addition of liberal quantities of East Coast US hardcore power – the pace varies from slow mosh parts that will make you jump up from your breakfast table and form a circle pit, to fast chugging, Sick of it All style hardcore. A worthy release and a good sign that Swedish hardcore is in fine fettle!