Best of Year of the Monkey: Jharrod Edition
The guys in Kaala often refer to me as "the Grind guy" or "that scumbag who never washes his scrubby beard". Though both of these are fairly accurate depictions, I have to admit, this year was a great year across the board for all flavors of loud and noisy Extreme Music. Whether you're into Thrash, Hardcore, Doom, Black Metal, Grindcore, or whatever else strikes your fancy, fans in general were treated to some of the very best of Japan releasing some killer auditory content. Hell, only one of my top picks is Grind. To be fair, my top two were easy decisions for me. But the third was a tough choice. To our uninitiated readers both overseas and in Japan, I encourage you all to check these bands out and give them your money. Without further ado, here is my top 3 for 2016!
Conspiracies was a quality EP, but GUEVNNA’s Heart of Evil saw them truly come into their own artistically. The evolution of their musical style was neither a jarring change nor entirely unexpected. In short, their first full length gets evolution right. Doomy Stoner with a blend of disco makes this record fun and upbeat at times, while sinister and foreboding at others. The atmosphere, lyrics, and artwork of the record reek of the sometimes oppressive nature of urban life. The desire of a better life that is brought to its knees through exploitation and depravity. Yet through all the pessimism, there is a glimmer of hope that breaks through the blighted darkness, washing away all the sins of the past. No record released in 2016 spent as much time in my playist as Heart of Evil did. Without a doubt, this is my top pick for 2016.
Buy Heart of Evil here.
Self Deconstruction - Wounds (Break the Records)
I saw Self Deconstruction live more than any other band in 2016. Not only do they put on great events with their Anomalous Collision series, but they’re also one of the most talented bands in the scene right now. Blending grindcore and powerviolence while adding a good dose of freestyle, their latest full length Wounds is a tightly woven chaotic masterpiece. It grabs you by the throat from the outset and doesn’t let go until well after its complete. Cacophonous and a helluva’ lot of fun, this three-piece pulls no punches when it comes to delivery of some of the most complicated Grind compositions you’ll ever hear.
Buy Wounds here.
Hater - The Nightmare Continues...With Your Haterizer (Captured Records)
My third pick was a tough choice between Tainted Dickmen’s Tornado Thrashing Bomber and Hater’s The Nightmare Continues…With Your Haterizer. But as much as I love Tainted Dickmen and their tongue in cheek STD ridden phallic imagery, I ultimately had to go with Hater. Their first full length doesn’t reinvent the wheel, it’s pretty straight forward Crossover Thrash. But goddamn is it a lot of fun to listen to. Complete with catchy circle pit inspiring riffs, sick guitar solos, and anthemic chorus lines, this record demonstrates the expertise of this band of veterans. From the very beginning with the chaotic intro, The Nightmare Continues...With Your Haterizer makes a great addition to any thrash fan's collection. It’s tight and probably one of the funnest records I picked up in 2016.
Buy The Nightmare Continues...With Your Haterizer here.
That's it for my oral vomitting for now. Check out these bands, come to a show, buy me a beer. I'll see you guys in the pit in 2017!