Friday, April 27, 2012

SHORTSIGHT CD Still Available (H8000)

If you think H8000 music is gone, you are not exactly right because one of these gems is still largely available at Good Life Recordings. It's a CD yes but the more I listen to it, the more I enjoy it. The music is really powerful yet sensitive with the female vocals. But more  of that later on... Let's start with a brief introduction of the recorded output.

I don't know that much about the history of the band but Hans from LIAR also sang the demo-recordings. This demo was released on cassette through Warehouse Records.



With the 8000-crew sticker


Also the 7"s are kicking around on the web now and then. The music is recorded in Cats Studio for this 7" and there were several colors pressed: RED, ORANGE, BABY BLUE, WHITE, CLEAR and BLACK on Conquer The World Records from USA. Which was very progressive for that moment of time.



As H8000 Central told us; due to the bad distribution back then these recordings were also pressed by a European label, MACHINATION Records but then with only two colors (CLEAR?) and BLACK. The sleeves are the same but with inverse color-scheme.

LEFT is European Pressing: Machination Records
RIGHT is USA Pressing: Conquer The World Records

Slightly different lay-out for the BACK-covers
Notice the date-error on the back-cover of the EU-pressing:

Date-ERROR 

CORRECT Date

So the only remaining recordings or format that you can buy straight from the label still are those CD's called "Cold Wounds Waking". What differs this output from other H8000 bands is the harmonic atmospheric sound.

This album was mastered -like many H8000 recordings- by Tony Deblock at MIDAS STUDIO in July 1994 while the 7" was recorded March 1993. This CD has the 3 Godfathers of the crew collaborating in it; Edward (releases, label activities, front photo), Hans LIAR (backing in the songs "Father") and Josh CONGRESS (wrote partly in the song "Uprooted").

Cover FRONT - With Hans in full front-row action !

Notice the Carhart rip-off logo


Not so popular band / release as their peers' bands / releases from the time-period, that's why it was never pressed onto vinyl. The funny thing is actually that Good Life Recordings still has a lot of these CD's left and you can still buy it straight from the label for a bargain price of 4 euro! I'd say throw this one in your shopping basket and own some authentic piece of H8000 history! Show Good Life some love and buy this CD for only 4 euro...

Buy SHORTSIGHT Cold Wounds Waking CD at hardcore.gl




Thursday, April 26, 2012

Wild Punx Syracuse Wigout At Cosmos

Are the matrix etchings for the V/A ASSAULT CITY 7" on Reaper Records I thought I'd never find somewhere. A while ago I got the wild opportunity to buy the regular cover with black vinyl straight from the label at the regular price. I figured that pretty awesome. I posted about it and a while later someone replied to the post asking me if I bought the limited edition of this record.
I was surprised because at the instant I couldn't understand where or when I had that opportunity he was asking after. A moment later I laid the link between this comment and the Reaper Store and looked it up, so it happened I saw the limited Halloween-cover was suddenly restocked and straight from the label; so new condition and even at a normal price.

Now that I got them in the mail I must say they are awesome and well taken care of as usual. And are grateful for the hint from "across your face". You should do him a favor and look up his blog also...

various artist assault city hardcore reaper records syracuse halloween cover
MISFITS Rip-off cover 

double-sided lyric-poster

early number 04/100
GOLD vinyl Regular cover 
various assault city hardcore compilation gold vinyl reaper records
the awesome graphical side of the lyric-poster
RR03 B-side of the regular cover

Anyway that -finding early Reaper stuff- doesn't happen often so I figured I needed to share my joy of collecting....

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Two New Final Domains

I've been working very hard this last couple of days get the correct names for my domain. The previous name was still too long and nobody could type the URL without mistakes at least I couldn't. So I chose to use the acronym of RECORDS WITH HISTORY AND FUTURE as domain and then created two sub domains; one for the blog and one for my second hand rarities shop!

So the final result of all the seeking, thinking and technical work is:

BLOGGER SITE:

LIMITED RUN STORE:

Days of work for a simple result like these website-names.

The feed should still be operational and the friend-connect also. If you would like to refer to my blog from your blog or site please still use the old url: flandersfury.blogspot.com , everything will redirect from there.

If you did loose the feed subscribe again on http://feeds.feedburner.com/rwhaf

Thanks 

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

FACEDOWN beyond all horizons

As my brother in arms Flanders Fury told you all a while ago, here's another Belgian hardcore classic for you all to discover and share with us. It's not really H8000 material but it's getting very close.

FACEDOWN was one of Belgium's best kept secrets in hardcore during the H8000 era.
Since non of its members hailed from the illustrious H8000 area ( being West-Flanders in Belgium, also known as the 8000 postal area code) you couldn't technically call this gang of Antwerp province based vegan warriors a H8000 band. But since they picked their influences from the same big basket full of great classic releases that the H8000 heroes composed their masterpieces in accordance to, it almost seemed as if they had been adopted by the H8000 scene. Many spots on stages all over the H8000 scene witnessed the brutal wall of sound named FACEDOWN. Aside stages, they shared the same ideals and ideas, even friends and who knows even the same small venue on the road. Cause DIY was the only way to go back then.

facedown beyond all horizon vinyl lp cover
gold lettering 
The band was from the Antwerp - Mechelen area as said earlier, and since that area didn't have any such hardcore scene as the mighty H8000 it was pretty obvious that their talent could be appreciated by the H8000 kids who welcomed them with open arms to their own little get-together going on. Their eclectic style of hardcore was something the H8000 bands sometimes failed to deliver since along it's path the H8000 sound kept getting more metallic than purely hardcore. From early American Hardcore  influenced (SSD, MINOR THREAT,...)  8000 scene to 90's metalcore ridden (CLEVO-HC, SLAYER, ...)  H8000 to some sort of Head bangers Ball in the end. Spreading the words of wisdom to educate on veganism, SXE ethics and other topics related to the H8000, they conduct it through a blend of heavy metalcore entwined with melodic vocal parts and many tempo changes that make their releases very diverse and enjoying to listen to.

The best thing yet to come out of Antwerp ( just kidding guys, 'T Stad is ok in my book)
This outfit consisted of a couple of twins and their three other 'carnals' that shared the same urge to put their thoughts out there through the medium of homegrown hardcore music. The 'Baeken' brothers even had their own record label going during a certain period of time dubbed the 'EVIL TWINS RECORDS'. That was also where they released their first 7" 'Friendship is Everything' (1996), one of their best ever and a very wanted piece of Belgian hardcore nostalgia. With -for me at least- the classic song 'The Shining Path'. Soon after came the follow up EP with the original title 'Friendship is Still Everything'(1997), this time a collaboration with Ghent based record label GENET RECORDS. In the same year a MCD titled 'Education, Contemplation, Dedication' (1997) was released through GENET RECORDS. Next to a split with EARTHMOVER their last and final release as FACEDOWN was 'Beyond All Horizons' (1998) before dismissing the band and starting over with a new and totally different project. Some time after the end of FACEDOWN they formed a band called .CALIBRE.

facedown beyond all horizons lp black vinyl


With the name change to .CALIBRE ( yes, the dot in front was important!) came a whole new sound and audience that seemed to lead astray from where the H8000 crew was heading for at that time.
.CALIBRE. even made it onto mainstream Belgian radio with a song called .Calibre in 2001. The switch to a more mainstream label (EMI) had led to a musical turnaround with the release of the album "Kill The Logo". A clean cut overproduced version of what once was a H8000 approved band. The ideals still remained throughout their life-cycle and they kept on spreading them with a fierce heart, but the way of executing those feelings had changed towards a more 'popular' sound. A sort of change from INSIDE OUT to RAGE AGAINST THE MACHINE. Since a major breakthrough never really occurred the band disappeared from the mainstream radar as fast as they came. Original members  Dani Mies and Niko Poortmans, respectively vocals and guitar in FACEDOWN, still continue to play together in a band called A SCHOOL OF QUIET. Yet another evolution was made towards a more rock oriented genre. ASOQ isn't bad at all but miles away from their past.



"Beyond All Horizons" is a very nice album if you're open to it. It has a rather strange structure where the usual FACEDOWN hardcore madness flips of in the split of a second to a different sound that has a more acoustic vibe and clean vocals. Going back and forward into your typical metalcore with melodic vocals breaking the whole thing up into some sort of chapters. To end it all they felt the need to experiment with electronic during the 'Eurobeat' 90's with some beats and synthesizer-sounds, not a bad attempt but no killer material, just filler.




With titles as Severance, Suffocation, Demon and Wartime you can guess that the overall message of the lyrics is not of the petting zoo kind. No mr Nice Guy here. It's basically the same message that the H8000 tried to spread to the youth of Flanders. Veganism, straight edge ethics, respect and contemplation are abundant here. The usual suspects such as Animal/Human rights, antifascist, anti religion, ... are being put to court once one with well thought words of wisdom. You don't hear many of these kind of lyrics in hardcore nowadays. Let's just call it some content.



To me FACEDOWN still remains one of the best European bands of that era, alongside many H8000 bands such as LIAR, CONGRESS, NOF and SOY. They laid out the blueprints for today's European hardcore scene. Too bad they felt they need to change their ways throughout the years, cause a band of that caliber is what we could use in today's hardcore scene. Time to discover this band with history ,and who knows if they feel to the need to step up again , a future. I will be there, front row, will you?

                                                         WARTIME by FACEDOWN


Ezekiel02:24:81

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

RISE AND FALL "Faith" Review

The hard hitting guitars accompanied by the drums in the beginning of the album introduce you to the macabre mindset of the song "A Hammer And Nails". The 'hitting on nails with a hammer'-sound accompanied with swallowing and indulging background bring you in an state of ominous and fearful thought. Whom is he talking about, you or someone else, the words can't tell for sure.
As far as this begin-track is catching you with interest the second song "Deceiver" is taking it even further. Confusion spreads, obscurity becomes immanent, nothing tells you the answer. It goes fast, faster than you might like while riffs are psych-melody woven only one thing is clear; ferocity is the response to this all.
"The Gallows Await" shreds my  music-system into pieces, very fast and rumbling sounds, cleveland-style stir make clear that there is only one way to cope with the laws of the past, emotional wounds catching up with time. If you don't go equally fast in healing wounds, you fail and the gallows will await! At least that's my first interpretation of this again ominous song  that ends in a stomp-heavy down-beated reality.
Just when you think the sound leaves behind some peace and love in the beginning of the fourth song called "Burning At Both Ends", a traditional RISE AND FALL musical core is played and the lyrics make you aware of an unrelenting reality.
"Things Are Different Now" brings a welcome breath of peace in sound (with a psychedelic touch) but be not fooled about the outcome because it ends in a vicious circle. To me the song is a striking realization of a never fading feeling of powerlessness yet finding peace in it. That never fading feeling is translated technically/musically on vinyl by pressing a groove that makes a circle and then start over again in the same groove/sound.

4 vinyl versions: EARTH - WATER - FIRE - CLOUDS in a die-cut GATEFOLD cover



 As the A-side never ends due this to this vinyl-technicality I flip the vinyl on my turntable. So we come to the B-side:

I think the song "Breathe" is about constants in life. Just like breathing is a constant in our life, love is also. But then dying is also a part of everybody's life. "It always love that makes us whole, yet we all die alone". The music holds a thin line between a rocky positive vibe and a weeping tragedy underneath. Just like life actually is.
"Hidden Hands" is introduced by a distorted bass line. To crush in completely with a metallic chaotic touch. It is that chaos, that war that makes us survive the hidden hands. The war that makes us survive the head that wears the crown...
"Escapism" is indeed the word that typifies a lot of our behavior. Do we have the strength to stand on hands and knees before gods unseen? This truth is hard to face and so are the backings by Kevin Baker in this song. An attitude so shortsighted it bleeds us down.
"Dead Weight" is the feeling of the songs sound at moments but still straight-forward enough to be Rise And Fall. It's like the music pulls us through the burden.
"Faith/Fate" is a terrific song to close with, a positive note! As is the birth of a human-being represented by the heartbeat at the end of this song. Whatsoever is thrown at us we always pull through. Love for the loveless, hope for the hopeless, faith for the faithless and speech for the speechless.

rise and fall faith lp all colors water wind earth fire vinyl deathwish inc
The four vinyl-colors

RISE AND FALL's creation here is one that will keep critics, reviewers and listeners busy for many decades to come as it is their most eclectic album. While not letting go the traditional straight-forward R&F sound they continue to make a kingpin of Hardcore. They proof to be masters of the metallic hardcore genre, not only they rule the genre, they have simply set a standard here that will be impossible to equal for many bands and years to come.
Also lyrically universal topics and philosophy used here make this a pinnacle and landmark album. Honestly I gave the band after hearing INTO OBLIVION no second victory, certainly after hearing OUR CIRCLE IS VICIOUS I thought they had it. But I really have to skip this thought because they are back with their most surprising and best album ever. 

As this is also RISE AND FALL's 4th album and due to all the release-preparation or marketing the label and the band did, my expectations were high but this is like everything I thought it would be and more.
The album covers might be fantasy or not, the way I interpret it is like this:
The musical composition carries various influences in it so does mother earth's compositions that is presented by this four-piece of elements in the album artwork. If this is RISE AND FALL 's world, embodied in sound and lyrics, if these are those elements, well then I'd gladly be a part of their universe.

Diecut gatefold cover with the four elements  and a lyrics sheet. Every sheet is double-sided!
Hardcore can mean aural terror, can mean heavy riffs, can mean truth but this album has it all and truly brings a smile on my face also. A smile of beholding perfection and looking it in the eyes...

You can buy this album from the label; DEATHWISH INC Or at your favorite distro like GOOD LIFE, REALITY RECORDS, REVELATION, etc.




Friday, April 6, 2012

FIRESTONE Element (H8000)

FIRESTONE,
The metallic lords hailing from the infamous K-town area, heart of the once world-renowned H8000 scene.
Five adolescent friends who happen to reside near the epicenter of the H8000 scene decided to form their own project of mayhem after witnessing the ever growing scene surrounding them during that brief period of time in the mid '90's. Shows, labels, zines and bands sprung out of nowhere and the scene was very vibrant during those days.
FIRESTONE is the result of their vision upon the world and their surroundings. Influenced by fellow H8000 residents and friends such as SPINELESS, DEFORMITY, LIAR, CONGRESS,... they brew up a mixture of death metal beefed up with a H8000 hardcore attitude.

firestone element cover lp sober mind records


Element is the mini EP they released in 1998 on SOBER MIND RECORDS, the legendary label once run by Hans from LIAR. Since FIRESTONE was only around for a brief period of time their legacy holds only a few releases such as "Aim For A New Tomorrow" and "Element". Certain members of FIRESTONE are still active in music and have been part of ( or still are) bands such as AMEN RA and LIAR.



The six songs on this release are an example of the pure aggression that the H8000 scene once displayed
through their metallic infused version of hardcore. Heavy grunts from deep below scream out their vision on
society. The disgust drips through the speakers as thundering drums join weeping guitars. Finger licking guitar solo's add a final layer to the wall of anger. Some slower parts are incorporated to add some variety in their metal influenced compositions. Still hard and full of fury they waltz their way through this mini EP.
Chugging their way throught the chords they show us a fine example of what the whole H8000 was about.
FIRESTONE never really caught on to the scene since their style wasn't very renewing or diverse. In the end it was all riff based metal played out to a hardcore crowd. And that crowd happened to be spoiled with all the great original bands in the scene.

firestone element lp vinyl black sober mind records

The lyrics are diverse views on themes such as human rights, death and other topics that relate to the whole H8000 influence. Accompanied by their heavy hitting sound and unleashed vocals these offspring of the H8000 gave the world a different kind of album of what was the current standard back in the mid '90's.
It was leaning more to the metal side than the original H8000 sound was but still had enough balls to participate in the scene and leave his marks on it.


FIRESTONE never really reached out like other H8000 bands that achieved scene-stardom and world-fame back then. They were a project of young bloods in those days and that can be noticed by a closer look at the lyrics. Straight to the point and direct in your face, no hidden messages here. Not bad, but you can notice the difference with other legends of the scene and as said before they were still young and fresh to the whole concept of performing so this can be seen as a 'growing of age' album, a first step into the creative process.

Once part of the glorious heydays of H8000, this album can still light up my day by putting it on my record player and giving it a spin. Thoughts of windmilling and feet first dives come to mind listening to this record.
Small venues turned into violent pits of anger full of idealistic youngsters releasing their fury to their beloved music and representative bands. A scene that was founded on mutual respect and commitment towards making this world a better place for all. Where the youth was fed up with the current society and did things their own way, DIY. Where has it's gone too? It's still out there in the hearts of many, only clouded by the many scenes that developed after the glorious H8000 days. Instead of unity, backstabbing has become todays reigning trend.




Ezekiel02:24:81





Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Important RWHAF News Update


We will continue to make retro-reviews of old H8000 stuff. These records need to be introduced to the kids and a worldwide public! One of the missions of RWHAF that is...  People who hate and stab us in the back will be simply ignored.

Another thing is that if you want a review, you can send promo CD's or 7"s to me, including a word of why and I will see what I can do... willem@flandersfury.net

If you think your band needs a download on this blog, I will consider it also! But it only about OUT OF PRINT STUFF and old stuff that isn't available anymore. AND I need the the entire band and former label to be alright with it! Maybe it can kickstart something new...

I need you to share this also, thanks!!