Saturday, September 19, 2009

Negative Gain - 1985-1986 Discography

Killer thrash hardcore from Toronto, Ontario. Fast and aggressive but with a dark edge at times. Classic stuff that was unfortunately never re-issued or released on CD. This collection compiles the band's 1986 "Back From the Dead" LP on Pusmort Records, and the band's self-released demo tape from 1985. Excellent quality on both recordings, and i boosted the demo to match the volume of the LP. Sounds great. Enjoy.

Negative Gain: 1985-1986

Peter Warner - vocals

Grant C. Slavin - guitar
Steve Currie - bass
Andrew Mosely - drums

Band History (by Grant Slavin):
Negative Gain was founded in Toronto, Ontario by Peter Warner who wrote all of the lyrics and provided rehearsal space in his basement. Filling out the lineup was Grant C. Slavin on guitar, Steve Currie on bass, and Andrew Mosely on drums. All members were in their mid-teens at the time. Their influences included Minor Threat, Millions of Dead Cops, the Misfits, and the Dead Kennedys, as well as local TO bands Direct Action and Sudden Impact.
Negative Gain got their first break in '83 when we were asked by local Toronto promoter Jill Heath to open for Jodie Fosters Army at the city's legendary punk club The Turning Point. After the show Pete and Grant went skateboarding with JFA. The evening was documented in a subsequent issue of Thrasher as JFA's guitarist Don Pendelton was writing a column for the rag documenting their tour. Other memorable Negative Gain gigs around this time include warming up for bands like the Circle Jerks, Gang Green, the Descendents and 7 Seconds. The young thrash band soon went from listening to their favorite bands' records on a daily basis to hanging out with them backstage and stealing their beer rider!
More help from Jill Heath came when the promoter sent Negative Gain's 1985 demo tape, Attack of the Killer Bears, to Pushead for review. Pushead evidently like the tape so much that he offered to release a full-length LP for the band. Negative Gain recorded their album in Oakville, Ontario in about five hours on a Saturday afternoon, as studio time was limited to what the young band could afford to spend on the recording. The session was produced by Brian Taylor of the Toronto band Youth Youth Youth.
Sadly, Pete Warner committed suicide not too long after the recording was completed, and never lived to see its release. His last gig with the band was with Toronto's Bunchofuckingoofs. Negative Gain continued on as a three-piece for about two more years, before splitting in the late 1980s.

Info taken from the Kill From the Heart site. Go here for more info and lyrics to the "Back From
the Dead" LP.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Rancor - Promo collection for upcoming discography

This is a promo collection for the upcoming Rancor discography, to be released in 2010 on Youngblood Records.

Rancor played fast hardcore punk in the spirit of other early Younglood bands like Life's Halt, Rain on the Parade, Tear it Up etc. This has the riffs and energy of the late '80s "youth crew" sound, with plenty of sing along choruses and positive lyrics, but this is no carbon copy band, or "retro" by any means. Far from it. The songs sound fresh. And they rip.

I was stoked when i found out i'd be working with the label that released "We Sold Our Souls For Hardcore", one of my favorite records of the late '90s. And here we are 10 years later, and Youngblood is still putting out records by some of my favorite current hardcore bands like Iron Age, Mind Eraser, and Police and Thieves. Who said punk is dead? Oh yeah, that Bluth guy.

So here you go. A collection of Rancor's earliest material. The demo and first ep, all ripped directly from the master tapes for excellent sound quality. Thanks to Sean Youngblood for his enthusiasm with this project, and for turning me on to a great band. This stuff will all be re-mastered soon (with plenty more music), so here's your chance to get these early songs in their original pre-mix versions. Enjoy! I sure did.

Rancor: 1995-1996 Collection

In antici
pation of the upcoming Rancor reunion at this year's Youngblood Records Showcase we wanted to work with one of our favorite blogs to bring you some out-of-print Rancor material. Hell, all of Rancor's material is long out-of-print but we are in the process of compiling and mastering their full discography which is due out in 2010.
This collection couples the "I Won't Take Part" Demo and "Flip The Switch" EP. The tracks are taken straight from the masters but are in un-mastered form. Despite the tracks being un-mastered, they are clean rips that sound pretty great.
Hailing from Allentown, Rancor's "Flip The Switch" EP was our first release so we will always be grateful to them. They were some of the funnest guys you could ever know and their live shows were intense. Andy (the singer) was especially nuts on and off the stage and he always had a prank up his sleeve.
Listening to these tracks takes me back to 1997 when hardcore on the East Coast was really popping with bands like Floorpunch, Ten Yard Fight, Hands Tied, Fastbreak, 97a, Atari, Rain On The Parade & Rancor playing out every weekend. It was exciting to be working with a band that we were 100% stoked on and the trips up to Allentown to hang out, plan records, work on layouts, etc. were some of the most fun we've had doing the label.
Thanks for checking it out. Enjoy.

— Sean O'Donnell
Youngblood Records

I Won't Take Part Demo
Recorded 1995

Jamie Heim - guitar
Andy Frobase - vocals
Mexically Mike Madrigale - bass
Chris Kayes - drums
Flip The Switch ep / The Time Is Now Comp Session
Recorded 1996

Jamie Heim - guitar
Andy Frobase - vocals
Ryan Buenaflor - bass
Chris Kayes - drums
Never Hold Back ep
Recorded 1997

Memories Of Tomorrow Compilation LP/CD
Recorded 1998

Jamie Heim - guitar
Andy Frobase - vocals
Greg Tomszack - bass
Chris Kayes - drums
"I Won't Take Part" Demo (1995)
"Flip The Switch" 7", Youngblood Records, YB-1 (1997)
"Time Is Now" 7" Compilation, Tension Building Records (1997)
"Never Hold Back" 7", Youngblood Records, YB-3 (1998)
"Memories Of Tomorrow" Compilation LP/CD, Youngblood Records, YB-6 (2000)
The Youngblood 2009 Showcase is Saturday, October 10th in Harrisburg, PA. More information can be found at the Youngblood Records website, and Myspace page. You can also check out the Rancor Myspace page here.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Under Pressure - 1988 Discography

More late '80s hardcore from New York. Under Pressure had a heavy sound in the vein of bands like Outburst, Breakdown, Raw Deal etc, with a bit of a patriotic slant in the lyric department. So here you go, more short-lived "New Breed" NYHC brought back to like. This collection compiles both the bands demos and a rehearsal session, all recorded in 1988. Thanks to Mauricio for all his time in helping me put this together. Enjoy.

Under Pressure 1988 Collection

Mauricio Vega on Under Pressure:

Under Pressure started out started as an oi hardcore band, sometime in the early part of 1987. The band was originally from Staten Island, NY. I was the only member that lived in Queens, NY. In April of 1988, Under Pressure released an 8-song demo titled “Vicious Bite”.

With the line-up of:
Mauricio Vega – Vocals
AmeriKen – Guitar
Dom Viola – Bass
VinSkin Conti – Drums
By the end of the summer of ‘88, Under Pressure started to go thru line up changes. At one point, Eric (Guitar player from the first “In Your Face” demo) played guitar for few gigs. After trying out numerous musicians, the new Under Pressure line-up was set.
Mauricio Vega – Vocals
Louie Negron – Guitar
Jimmy Lean – Bass
Scott Goettelmann – Drums
This new line-up was from Hicksville, Long Island NY. The band went from being from Staten Island, to Long Island. Looking back, I did a hell of a lot of traveling just to rehearse, LOL.
This was the line-up that recorded the song “Supremist” for New Breed Compilation. But by the end of 1988, Louie Negron left the band and Garret Snied took over on Guitar.
In December of 1988, Under Pressure released a 9-song demo titled “Vengeance”.
The line-up of:
Mauricio Vega – Vocals
Garret Snied – Guitar
Jimmy Lean – Bass
Scott Goettelmann – Drums
I’ve noticed on a few blogs that they claim to have the Vengeance demo, but they do not. What they have is a rehearsal session that we recorded with Louie Negron on Guitar. We used that recorded rehearsal tape mainly for seeking a new guitarist, and for booking gigs.
I have no idea how they got those recordings but, they do not have the real Vengeance demo. You will be the first to have the real Vengeance demo.
The new Under Pressure line-up had a much more heavier sound than the original line up. By the summer of 1989, Under Pressure decided to change their name to “Vicious Bite”.
Vicious Bite released, “Till Death Do You Part” (Taken from the Vengeance Demo) for the Chop-Chop Compilation on Skene Records. By the end of the summer of 1989, bassist Jimmy Lean, was diagnosed with cancer and left the band (RIP Jimmy). Since I wrote a lot of the music, I decided to play bass, and Tommy “Thunder” Goettelmann became the new vocalist.
The final Line-up was:
Tommy “Thunder” Goettelmann – Vocals
Garret Snied – Guitar
Mauricio Vega – Bass
Scott Goettelmann – Drums
Vicious Bite played a few shows with this line-up, and played a live set at the WNYU Spermicide radio show. But by the end of 1989, Vicious Bite broke up. Their last show was at The Anthrax in Connecticut sometime in the fall of 1989.
Since then, I’ve been playing bass in a band called the “Accidental Tribe” under the name Moe Cash.
Recently, I’ve been talking to my former Under Pressure band members about doing a reunion show, and possibly, re-recording all our old songs. Unfortunately, there is a band from Canada called Under Pressure, which has absolutely no relation to the NYHC band Under Pressure. So if we do re-unite, it will be under the name Vicious Bite.

—Mauricio Vega

As usual, i restored the files a best as possible. The Vicious Bite demo was especially a challenge, as the songs were buried under a layer of tape hiss. I'm pretty happy with the end results.

I've been listening to these songs for the past week and it's all great stuff, but the rehearsal session is probably my favorite recordings. That could be due to the fact that the New Breed track, and the rehearsal (which i always thought was the Vengeance demo) was my exposure to this band. Such a great sound on those rehearsals though, it actually could have been a demo, or even made a great ep.

If anyone has the Vicious Bite live WNYU set, or any other Under Pressure rarities, please g
et in touch.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Burn Discography

The live set was recorded at CBGB on 10/14/90. The first track starts off a bit rough, but it gets better, and is most likely the best sounding Burn set you'll ever come across. This exact set was bootlegged on CD and labeled as "Live in NYC 1991". Not only did the bootlegger get the year wrong, but most of the song titles were wrong as well (most just seemed to be made up). Also, a lot of the stage banter was cut out and their were a few tracks that were poorly separated (the end of a song would be at the start the next song etc). So here's the set in it's entirety. Correct date, correct titles and correctly separated. Not to mention the quality is better. I've also included two unreleased studio tracks. On And On and Onlooker were taken from a 1990 rehearsal, most likely at Don Fury Studios during the 7" sessions, but i'm not 100% sure of that. The rehearsals were basically several takes of these 2 songs, and one or two other songs. I picked what i thought were the best sounding, and best performed versions of the 2 unreleased tracks, and cleaned them up as best as possible, removing all tape hiss and boosting the sound. I think they came out great. Thanks to Brett Beach and Graham Hooper for helping out with the music, and Chadski, Adam, Daily and the rest of the Livewire crew for helping out with the info. Enjoy.


Burn were incredible. After the demise of great bands like Collapse and Absolution, Burn took NYHC into the '90s in a powerful and progressive way. They could have paved the way for an incredible scene, instead, they turned out to be one of the last true great NYHC bands. Don't get me wrong, their were still great hardcore bands that followed throughout the '90s, but as far as the traditional NYHC sound goes, for me Burn was the swan song.

Chaka Malik - vocals
Gavin Van Vlack - guitar
Alex Napack - bass
Alan Cage - drums
John Kricksiun (who played for Collapse, Life's Blood and Absolution) played drums on the 2 comp tracks.

The Burn s/t 7" was recorded May-June of 1990 at Don Fury Studios and released in 1990 on Revelation Records.

The Last Great Sea was recorded in 1992 at Don Fury Studios and made the rounds throughout the '90s as a demo. It was finally released in 2002 by Revelation. Three killer tracks.

The Forever comp 7" was released in 1990 on Irate Records and also featured tracks by Turning Point, Born Against, Rorschach and Citizens Arrest. The best 7" compilation of the '90s? To me it is.

The Rebuilding comp 7" was released in 1990 on Temperance Records and also featured tracks by Turning Point, Gorilla Biscuits and No Escape. Temperance re-released it in 1996 on CD with the Turning Point/No Escape split 7" and the Burn song from the Forever comp as bonus tracks.

Burn started in '88 and broke up in '94. Chaka formed Orange 9mm, Gavin (Absolution, NY Hoods, Side By Side) joined Pry and Die 116, and Alan Cage (Beyond) joined Quicksand. Prior to Burn, Alex Napack played in Pressure Release, and Chaka helped Freddy Alva put out the infamous New Breed tape.

The band reformed in 2001 with the addition of guitarist Vic DiCara (Inside Out) and bassist Manny Carrero (Glassjaw) and released the "Cleanse" ep (2001 Equal Vision Records), which i h
ave yet to hear.

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Ringworm - 1990-2003

'90s metallic hardcore is a genre i'm not too familiar with, or really have any interest in, but Ringworm are in a league of their own. From Cleveland, Ohio, the band started as Force of Habit (with only one known recording under that name), then changed their name to Ringworm and self-released the completely powerful and vicious 1991 demo. The band went on hiatus after the demo and didn't record anything again until 1999. 8 years later and the "Madness of War" demo sounds like it picks up right where they left off. They've been putting out records ever since, and are still active today.

This is a collection of demos, split eps (all out of print), cover songs, live tracks, alternate mixes of some tracks from their first full length, and the only known Force of Habit track recorded in 1990. 27 tracks spanning 1990-2003, all excellent sound quality, and all tracks mastered to be at the same volume. I put this one together for myself, but it came out so good i decided to share it here. Enjoy!

Ringworm 1991-2003 Anthology

1991 demo lineup:

James Bulloch (Human Furnace) - vocals
Frank Novinec - guitar
Chris Pellow - bass
Kenny Carpenter - drums

The original demo was recorded on August 5, 1991 at Mars Studio in Cleveland, Ohio and released as a 7" in 1995 on Blood Book Records. All music written by Frank Novinec and all lyrics by the Human Furnace. These tracks were later re-recorded for the band's first LP entitled "The Promise" released on Incision Records in 1993. The demo recordings are far superior in my opinion, and the version in this collection is devoid of the samples before each track. The 1991 demo is by far my favorite Ringworm recording, and i never seem to get tired of it.

The band went through many lineup changes throughout the years, and i'm not sure what the lineup was in '99 when they returned with the "Madness of War" demo. Three crushing songs, 2 of which were re-recorded for the band's split 7" with Cold As Life released on Stillborn Records in 2001.

The split cd ep with Godbelow, known as "Hollowed Soul" was released on Surface Records in 2000. One new track, a crushing re-recording of Necropolis (from 1991), and a cover of Killing Time's "Brightside".

The split 7" with Terror was recorded on May of 2003 at Spider Studios and released on July 15, 2003 on Deathwish Inc. Records. Both tracks were re-recorded for the third full-length "Justice Replaced by Revenge" released Oct. 18 on Victory Records.

The Circle Jerks and Angry Samoans covers threw me for a loop when i first heard them because of the clean guitar sound and clean vocals. They stay true to the originals, and there's really no way you can even tell it's Ringworm unless told. These tracks were recorded in 1991, and "I Just Want Some Skank" was released on the 1991 compilation "Dark Empire Strikes Back: Cleveland Compilation" released on Dark Empire Records. I'm not sure if the other tracks were released on any compilations, i got all 3 of them from the "Flatline" CD put out by Lost & Found Records in 2005.

The live tracks were recorded at Peabody's in June of '94. I'm pretty sure this is the original lineup with the exception of Chris Dora on drums. Such a vicious rendition of Urine. These tracks were also taken from the "Flatline" CD, as were the next batch of songs, the alternate mixes of various tracks from "The Promise".

The last track is the only known Force of Habit (pre-Ringworm) song, taken from the "Voice of Thousands" comp released on Conversion Records in 1990.

If anyone has any further info on lineups during certain recordings (or just any further info in general), please leave a comment.
Current members:
Human Furnace - vocals
Matt Sorg - guitar
John Comprix - guitar
Chris Dora - drums
Mike Lare - bass / vocals
Former Members:
Matt Devries - guitar
Frank "3-Gun" Novinec - guitar
Danny Zink - drums
Chris Pellow - bass
Bblaze Tishko - guitar / bass
John Lock Jaw - bass
Chris Smith - guitar
Kenny Carpenter - drums
Bob Zieger - drums
Aaron Ramirez - bass
Aaron Dallison - guitar
Steve Rochourst - bass
Ben Hhallowell - bass

If you like this stuff, be sure to check out the Holyghost 1999 demo, which is available on CD from Deathwish Inc. Records with 2 bonus tracks. Human Furnace on vocals.

Saturday, September 5, 2009

Pressure Release - 1987-1989 Discography

Yet more great hardcore from the late '80s? Damn, it seems never-ending. This is a collection of just about every Pressure Release song recorded between 1987 and 1989, and i think it's a great document showing the progression of the band's sound through the years. From their 1987 demo and 1988 sessions when the band played raw, fast, pissed off hardcore in the style of their NY/CT contemporaries like Our Gang, True Colors and Wide Awake, to the more brooding and complex songs on their one and only 7" in 1989. And much like Collapse, Burn, Beyond and several other hardcore bands from the late '80s/early '90s, they called it quits just as things were getting interesting. So here you go. 29 tracks all cleaned up and brought back to life. Enjoy.

Pressure Release: 1987-1989 Collection

Original line-up

Doug Byrnes - vocals
Tom Kuntz - guitar
Sam Haffy - guitar
Alex Napeck - bass
Tae Park - drums

Sam left the band early on, and shortly after the recording of their "Prison of My Own" 7", Doug was replaced on vocals by Ben Smith.

The demo was recorded at the Music Box in NYC between Dec. 19-20 of 1987. Six tracks (if you count the intro) of raw, fast, blown-out hardcore with a weird reverb effect on the vocals that only adds to it's charm.

The tracks from the New Breed compilation tape (released in '89), the rehearsal tracks, and the tracks from the "X Marks the Spot" comp 7" (Smorgasbord Records) were all recorded at Don Fury Studios in 1988. The "X Marks the Spot" 7", which also featured tracks by Wide Awake and Up Front, was re-issued on CD in 1995 by Striving For Togetherness Records as part of a collection of out of print 7" releases. The various 1988 sessions are my personal favorite Pressure Release recordings.

The "Prison of My Own" 7" was originally released on New Age Records in 1989. This is the band's darkest and most experimental recordings, complete with synthesizers and layered guitar work. The band cites BL'AST! and Void as big influences during the recording of this record, and you can definitely pick up on that vibe. The 7" was originally recorded with Doug Byrnes on vocals, but when he was replaced by Ben Smith shortly after, Ben went in and re-recorded the vocals. Then (thankfully), in a pressing mix-up, the record was pressed with Doug's vocal track. Both versions of the 7" are in this collection. Both sound great but I prefer the Doug version.

Closing out the collection is a live set. I have no info on this set other than it was recorded in 1988. 2 of the tracks were left off due to various problems. The first track which was just so horribly recorded i couldn't bring myself to post it, and the song Brotherhood which was cut in half. If anyone has any info on this set, or any further Pressure Release info in general, please leave a comment.

I cleaned up all these recordings as best as possible, removing any tape hiss, and boosting levels so all the songs are roughly at the same volume. The demo and Don Fury tracks are still a bit rough sounding, but that's pretty much how they were recorded.

Thanks to all the fine folks over at Livewire for the help.

For some great Pressure Release stories, interviews, pictures etc., go to the Double Cross webzine and use the search function. Tons of great stuff.