Top hardcore of 2016

2016 was fucked up on many levels but I abstain from being a pussy about it cause I know 2017 gonna be even worse. And I’m not even talking politics yet, this shit is gonna be out of control. But as the saying goes, when going gets hard, hardcore gets going and there was shitload of good hardcore to help me deal with personal demons and this world going mad. I expect momentum to continue during next 12 months as the social, political and economic situation deteriorate and people have to deal with serious real life shit not he said she said gossip and being fucking sensitive for the sake of it.

Best hardcore in 2017 was:

Harley Flanagan - Cro-Mags
This is hands down the best record of the year. One of the best hardcore to come from NYC in recent years. Harley made 2016 his bitch with this one.

Manipulate - Becoming Madness
My second favorite hardcore record from 2016. Hard-hitting hardcore with ‘80’s crossover vibe so many bands try to recreate but Manipulate did it perfect.

The rest of the list goes in no order.

Backfire - Where We Belong
It’s 2016 and Bf! Continues to deliver uncompromising hardcore recreating the old golden eurocore sound in new ways that make it fresh. I applaud this one for being so in your face.

Bent Life - Never Asked For Heaven
Once this record gets going the shit never stops. Hard as hell!

Knuckledust - Songs Of Sacrifice
London diehards back with a record that deals with the ills of society over thick and pounding hardcore. The music, the message, the attitude - everything works on this one.

Naysayer - Nation Of Greed
Pure menace. Naysayer don’t do nuance which means that ep is filled with that uncompromising, no-weird-shit sound that made them rich and famous.

Point Blank - Burden Of Humanity
This is most likely the least-recognizable title on the list, but it deserves to reach a wider audience. You’re looking at major war shit!

Risk It! - Cross to Bear
Another banger from Europe. Very strong album with each track filled with good stuff that makes you want to incite violence.

Other shit that wasn’t bad:

Absolute Power - Self Titled
Government Flu - Vile Life
Gods Hate - Mass Murder
Ill Intent - Us Vs You
Regulate - Years Of Rage
Rhythm Of Fear - Maze Of Confusion

Destroy Cleveland - official trailer

Destroy Cleveland is a documentary about the Hardcore music scene in Cleveland from '86 to the present. This scene was notorious for it's violence and mayhem. for more info.

Features: Dwid Hellion, Aaron and Lenny Melnick, James Bulloch, Tony Erba, Tony "Chubby Fresh" Pines, Paul Schlacter, Steve Peffer, Chris Pellow, and many more.

2 weeks till this gem hits the streets, you can get your pre-order here.

Here are the hardest hitters of 2014

The real science behind the list below is me trying to remember on which records I wasted the most of my valuable time in 2014. I might have forgotten something or simply missed some nice records, but it is what it is.

King Nine is hands down my favorite band of 2014 and ‘Scared To Death’ is the hardest record I heard last year. I got no problems putting it among classics like Master Killer or In The Eyes Of The Lord and I am ready to fight anyone questioning my judgment. That’s a type of hardcore we need more of.

New Cold World was dope as well, nothing groundbreaking compared to their earlier shit, but still hard. The same with Sheer Terror, Madball or Ringworm - dope albums that were just like you expected them to be.

New releases by Last Dayz, Survival or Shrapnel prove that 7” is probably the best format for hardcore. Short burst of force and fury to get your testosterone to the right level.

I went through like 20 other lists of such to see the bigger picture of what’s really trending in hardcore lately. The amount of bands included there that I don’t know makes me question my credentials to run such respectable blog like this. Driven by my natural curiosity and enthusiasm to try new things I checked some of the bands and it was shit. I am not even dropping names cause I don’t want to embarrass anybody, but some people need to get their shit together and stop listening to weird hipster shit and focus on real hardcore. Hardcore for hardcore.

Anyway, the list goes like:

King Nine - Scared To Dead
Cold World - How The Gods Chill
7 Seconds – Leave A Light On
Battle Ruins - Battle Ruins
Madball - Hardcore Lives
Backtrack - Lost In Life
Sheer Terror - Standing Up for Falling Down
Ringworm - Hammer Of The Witch
Foreseen - Helsinki Savagery

Last Dayz - Ready To Die
Survival - Forged In Iron
Forced Order - Eternal War
Souls Search / Minus - Split 7"
The Real Deal - Demo 2014
Desperate Times - Looking For Solution
Indication - XI
Born Low - Refuse To Beg
Criminal Instinct – Fever
Shrapnel - Frenzied State

With so much stuff being released nowadays it’s hard to keep track, so if you wanna add anything do it in the comments.

The hardest track of the year:

Forgotten Classics: Stormcore

France was a hot bed of sick, evil and heavy hardcore bands in the late 90s and Stormcore was one of the finest of the pack along likes of Kickback, Trapped In Life and Drowning.

Forgotten Classics: Self Decay

Late 90’, upstate New York, Time Served Records - yeah, it's exactly that kind of hardcore music. You can do that style poorly or you can do it right, and these guys knew how to do it right.Heavy and rugged, simple and straight-forward, this is some classic material from this forgotten upstate New York band. Self Decay started in 1996/1997 (I’m not sure exactly) and Beneath The Lies seems to be their only release. The band featured Rigg Ross, who went on to play with Hatebreed and subsequently joined a slew of NYHC bands like Madball, Skarhead or Rag Men. He did a wonderful stuff on this album so I totally understand why he ended up playing on NYHC ep.

Behind The Camera: Interview with Taylor Rambo

Taylor Rambo is a talented photographer from upstate New York responsible for tons of great pics from random hardcore shows. The dude was so kind to let me use his photos for the Concrete interview, and I was so impressed with his work that I thought it would be dope to follow up with a short interview where he could shed some light on his work. So, here it is! Plus, check out the cool pics of TUI, Backtrack, Malfunction, Vehement Serenade and couple other dope bands.

Detroit Hardcore Comp - Interview with Mike from Lost Time Recs

Lost Time Records are about to release a 7” compilation to feature couple of up and coming hardcore bands that represent Detroit hardcore scene. The bands involved in this project are Freedom, From Hell, True Love, One by One, and Retribution. Each band is contributing a brand new track! Check out the interview we did with Mike, the man behind Lost Time Recs, who shares some info about this project!!

Hardcore History: John Joseph of the Cro-Mags

John Joseph recounts his personal journey growing up punk on the streets of 1970s New York City and how he came to find inner peace. Very nice interview with cool stories from the 80' when John was a street kid trying to get by, how he met HR and Bad Brains, and what brought him to Krishna.

Horror: Night Of The Living Punks

Small town punk rockers THE BRAIN DEADS have their first out of town gig. But there are a few problems: The venue is deserted, the promoter is a creep, their bass player has gone missing, and the only kids in the audience appear to be bloodthirsty monsters from hell. It's gonna take a lot more than a few power chords and teenage angst to survive this night.

Night of the Punks is low-budget 80′s slasher worship with a style bringing to mind Troma classics or Night Of the Living Dead flicks. The movie was directed by Dan Riesser and got everything you'd want from this type of movie. The right amount of gore and bad humor makes it actually fun to watch.

Joe Lauzon: "The Problem Solver"

Here's a cool documentary which was published in December 2012 as a part of Vice's Fightland series, filmed and directed by McFarland & Pecci. If you're scratching your head cause the name Ian McFarland sounds familiar, it's possibly because he used to play bass for Blood For Blood before pursuing full-time documentarian and commercial director career. Judging from the clip, Joe Lazon is a really cool and intelligent dude and I respect that he is not taking the easiest route, but instead choses the hard way to make his dreams reality. You might know him from The Ultimate Fighter 5, but here's more insight into his mindset as a figher and what motives him to go on. After watching this, also check out documantary about Dan Hardy, which was also filmed by McFarland & Pecci.