Sunday, March 2, 2014

2013's Year End Top 10 from MRR

I’m not following orders here I just wanted to include things that were the best in 2013. It’s lame because of how few non-USA bands have made the list. Bands from all over the world send me your stuffs. I don’t wanna miss the good materials this year. - vargyai.viktor at gmail.com 

Top 8 lp

Gun Outfit – Hard Coming Down (Post Present Medium)

Gun Outfit sounds like music I have already heard but actually I have never heard such music. Gun Outfit makes me recall memories I just wish i had. They bring me to places where I haven’t been or want to go back. They write songs about life but everything sounds better through their music. It’s so real and magical at the same time. Every of their record is better than the one before and every of their new record is their best. This band is amazing. Dream punk.

Society Nurse – ST (Iron Lung Records)

This year many bands have succeeded with writing a full length hardcore lp. Society Nurse stands out with their disgusting, threatening, destruction filled, never resting music. The vocals are angry as hell, the guitars remind me to Mecht Mensch, I wanna run around and fall to the bass bridges or whatever the fuck it’s called when hardcore music gets really groovy between two fast parts. This record is pure rage, a beautiful piece of falling apart punk hardcore.


Una Bestia Incontrolable - Observant Com El Mon Es Destrueix (La Vida Es Un Mus)

This catalan band carries the torch of amazing reverb spanish hardcore. Gathering psychotic and psychedelic rotten sounds, mixing it with larger than life beats and channeling through it dirty basements. Sometimes the guitars tell you more than the singer’s howled angst. It’s a manic stuff for acid freak hardcore fans.

Hoax – ST (Self Released)

I did not believe the hype. Although I have way to often found myself watching their live sets on youtube at nights. There was something in the singer’s eyes that was more frightening than his bleeding forehead. By doing this their sound has grown on me and luckily the lp is nothing to get used to. From the first second it’s the perfect echo of the vandalism this world is doing against the misfit crowd. So they turned it up against the victimizers. It’s pure alienation, suffering, desperation and running into the wall with nothing to lose. The songs sound as crucial and heavy and noisy as it’s possible, there is filth everywhere. Just look on the cover it’s so psychical you can say they put even their bodies into this not just their fingertips. I hate cheap shots as bleeding band members but with Hoax that should be the last thing to remember after this LP.  

Broken Prayer – ST (Sorry State)

I’ve never been so friendly with the idea that punk needs progression. I like how diverse it is with its million sub-genres but I felt no need from the music I love to progress. What Broken Prayer does is a bit of progression. For me using keyboards in Hardcore / Punk and leading their songs into something different which is closer to slackerish indie rock is nothing alike. It might sounds horrible but they are not just avoid failing with it but doing something amazing. If you ever wondered how would Wrangler Bruts sound with a keyboard here you are. This is so well thought, really something different while it still has the essences of punk in its core. Amazing.

Vixens – ST (La Vida Es Un Mus)

Visceral noise, ideas from all around, whatever happens, it has to happen. I only heard this album two weeks ago but since then they can’t disappear from my playlist. Amazing rage, what collapsing since forever but from these life ruins they build a wall wherein assholes are not allowed to be. Total Void worship, don’t be a fool this rules!!!!

Life Stinks – ST (S-S)

For some reason proto and post punk sounds better at midnight. I have spent nights listening to Modern Lovers, Velvet Underground’s European Son, early Pere Ubu and The Fall. Life Stinks sounds like even at midday as you were listening to these bands’ best songs at midnight. While you can hear these influences they are adding some indescribably new to their sound. Could it be the distorted bass, the desolated feelings, anything. They do not joke but it’s not as artsy as it could be. More like cool punks trapped in a gallery for a weekend, trashing painting, skating on sculptures, never sleeping. Sooo good!

Manipulation – ST (Sorry State)

I don’t know how much of a treasure were Talk is Poison and Deathreat when the punk scene was influenced by labels and trends, not by bands themselves. Those dark medieval times when there wasn’t a blog run by all of your housemates. But I do know these two bands above are fucking cool and so does Manipulation who are heavily influenced by such bands. And maybe a bit of Citizens Arrest. I love hardcore but many times I love hardcore more when it’s played by punk, by freaks by people in boots and not sneakers. When it’s hard because they are so fucking angry not because they see how fucked up this world is not because they are hurt by some of their friends are changing. Manipulation is this, its punk music but punker than punk. Put it on and burn your local police station.


Top 6 mini lp

Tony Molina – Dissed and Missed (Melters)

#1 thing of 2013? Getting together with my girlfriend. #2 of 2013? Listening to this album after failed dates and in drunken loneliness.

No – The Great Space (Static Shock)

Don’t know what triggered the chaps of UK to form amazing hardcore bands every second day but NO is winning this not easy game easily with putting out such ragger. What the fuck is this? This is faster than high quality amphetamine. Put together the fastest songs of Siege, some outer space noisy guitar parts and a bit of DYS and play it on 90 rpm.

Flesh World – ST (La Vida Es Un Mus)

I trust Jess Scott. I’m a huge fan of Brilliant Colors, loved the Index tape and this is nothing less than the previously mentioned bands. This is dreamy, reminds me of the weird and uncategorized feelings of NZ guitar bands, but its punk music for those who are fine with weekends spent alone in their rooms having fun in their own world, for travelers with no direction for bus rides at rainy middays. The whole sound gives me the feelings of spinning. This band is something new, something different, something amazing!

Stoic Violence – ST (Katorga Works / Video Disease)

Are they humans? This is raging hardcore punk played really well. Still there is something more pushing every sound from the speakers, jumping on you, pulling you down. They play this music as the angriest people in the world. It’s good when not only the music sounds angry and fast but the people behind it.

Pleasure Leftists – ST (Deranged)

I’m not a huge fan of this goth-new and dark wave of punk that is the huge thing nowadays. I thought Pleasure Leftists falls into this trend as well but I was soo wrong. They do sound post punk, but it’s more like they used tamed punk to raise the tension. Outsider music, while it’s not hard to listen to but kinda hard to understand. Alienated voices from a gloomy world. Can’t wait to host them in my room. They have deserved my pizza!

Sickoids – No Home (Sorry State/Grave Mistake)

The sonic hymn-ness of Hüsker Dü has disappeared. The raging aggression of Midwest hardcore stayed. It got mixed with Japanese speed and a bit noise. Guitars are used amazingly well here, maximum pedal core. The pace and part changings are unique. It toke some time for me to get used to this record but they still are a hardcore/punk power house, raging nerds. Also, Eric has become my ball brother in 2013 so there you go!

Top 5 7'' inches

Good Throb – Culture Vulture (Muscle Horse)

Loved their previous 7” and this is no different. The conscious rage of Crass (or just the accent – not sure) the heaviness of Negative Approach and the weirdness of Desperate Bicycles. Get this foolz!

White Wards – Paint Huffer (Self Released)

All right, so I haven’t heard this but I did hear the upcoming LP of what this is a sneak peak. The lp will be the best thing in 2014 so whatever from that is pure gold. Get into this or get out. Nah, not really stay even if you don’t like this.

Diat – Everyday (Iron Lung)

Picked their first 7” blindly from a distro after everyone said they are amazing and I saw too many people wear their shirts. One of the best decisions of 2013. This ep is gold too. So desolated, frustrating and distant. Post punk songs that remind me of the second half of the first SODS lp. Sometimes spooky, mostly slackerish paranoia. Even if there’s no tomorrow this makes the present better.

Gag - This Punk Shit Is Cool But I Hope I Am Rob Zombie When I Am 28 (Bedside Records)

They were the band of 2013. Hope they will come out with an LP soon. This is infantile hardcore/punk with catchy hooks that makes me wanna be at basements shows where I can lose my shit. At the same time they remind me to SSD and No Trend. Puke punk on your shoulder.

Die – ST (Sonic Terro Discs)

Just as NO, Die is delivering amazing hardcore / punk from UK. A tsunami of threatening angst. Seems like some DYS represses has landed in the kingdom because they too remind of that band. The guitars are crying, the drums are ignorant enough, there is feedback and slow bass lines. Greatest record for stomping in the loneliness of my room.

Top 5 demo tapes

Deformity

Wow. Most of the bands I like are influenced by the early 80s hardcore, but they do play and sound better than their roots. Altough it doesn’t mean they are better bands. But this demo could have been made in the glory days it’s so pure, full with real rage, mutant sounds and the rock and roll vibe. This is not garage rock but among the high speed, distortion, misplayed notes there is that thing what makes music the best thing. After sex and drugs.

Ivy

An all-star band with weird as fuck noise. This tape sounds like it was recorded by a tape deck smashed in the opposite end of the room. Still I can hear everything. Mostly that they know what makes a punk band great and unique. Nasty shit just the way I like it.

The Smear

I thought I had enough of pop-garage-punk. I bet this band has some connection to Marked Men. If not they are that essential too. Take Ramones, Misfits, Wipers and mix them together, make them sound like only you get what they did and create something new from them. Oh wait, you are too late The Smear has already done this.

Love Interest

Again I don’t like modern day goth punk. But this band is recreating feelings not clichés of a genre. There’s a party in your room, with pills and dystopian novels but you haven’t invited anyone. This is good if you could relate to gloom.

Ajax

High speed hardcore punk not influenced by Oi but by skinhead violence. I can’t type more about them they make me trash my room and pick a fight with my neighbors. They play something that’s not unique but they are playing it uniquely good.

Top 4 Reissues

Urinals – Negative Capability (In The Red)

Urinals is the band. I love them. They are essential for my life. You know how they sound. You have felt how they sound. You picked up a guitar and wished to create something they did. It didn’t happen still you did something cool. URINALS URINALS URINALS. Now you can buy all their songs on vinyl. ACK ACK ACK

Neo Boys – Sooner Or Later (K Records)

They say punk is for outsiders. But mainly it’s just white, middle class males who are depressed. Most of the times because of they are single or young and clueless. So when the real outcasts of this world plays punk it’s something different, it’s more real and whatever they do it fits just right. Neo Boys were girls making noise and this is just great. As the record goes further and I have heard more songs it just grows on me. People recreating their own universe. This is real!

Division Four – 1983 (Smartguy)

What a treasure. It toke some time to believe this is really from ’83. Brought me the same feelings when I heard Death for the first time. Division Four is futuristic amphetamine Oi, played by scared weirdoes. It sounds like Kubrick hired them to score Clockwork Orange II but the whole project failed so this demo landed in a box. How could we live without this? Who knew about it? Why wasn’t anybody told anything about them? One of the best things…EVER!!!

Deep Wound – ST (Armageddon Shop)


Perfect, awkward, teenage bedroom noise. Total geek band with virgins who locked themselves in basements to release their angst. It happened and it turned out super fast, falling apart, distorted chaos. Why am I describing this to you? If you don’t know them why do you care about me? This 7” is better than whatever I’ve done.

#370


It’s January the 2nd. I’m gonna be 27 in a few hours. January 3rd is the date when Nietzsche gone mad because he lost his faith in humanity. Not sure what is up to me but probably I will just go fat by eating homemade pizza while I will try to defeat my girlfriend in scrabble while we will drink gin tonic before cuddling. So humanity please don’t get too fucked up on my birthday.
Now it’s 14th of January and I’m pushing deadline with my Year End Top Ten. My birthday went better then planed even if my better half beat me with few points in Scrabble. But I got two cakes from her and from my mom thus felt a bit like someone close to Marie Antoinette. My girlfriend surprised me with a balisong knife (which turned out to be illegal to have with me in many countries, hungary counted as well) and a homemade Urinals t-shirt which are amazing gifts. She gave me a Modern Lovers LP for Christmas. Among other things I made her two mixtapes for Jesus’ bday. One of the tapes had Glue as the opening track cause unity songs are about love.
We were out at a gig the day after my birthday because one of my bands played a Food Not Bombs benefit show. The lineup was great with many of the best local bands. Too many friends again, too much moonshine always. I got so drunk at one point I wanted to break dance but people picked me up from the floor because they thought I fell and was rolling on the ground. I have jokingly reenacted horrible scenes from midday talk shows with my girlfriend, laughed a lot, started playing on a guitar that was in the neck of a performing guitar player at one show and woke up with vague memories. That show raised lots of money which is cool because Hungary is a place where the government is as dumb as they are hot headed so they do whatever they think is right and it forces many people out on the streets and FNB events are attended by more than a hundred people. This is where solidarity comes in, and benefit shows are a good way to support a noble cause while the only thing you do is you go to a show and have fun. But many times these shows have better vibes. For me almost every show is a benefit show since it benefits my every days when I’m being close to punk music among punx.
After this I have spent ten days with gathering almost everything that falls under my radar of punk music and I not just listened but tried to write short reviews for my hungarian blog. I ended up with many bands that I have missed out and twenty A4 pages of reviews. It was kind of an interesting / cool / painstaking / exhausting experiment I wish to happen with everybody who loves music and likes to have an opinion. In the breaks I was reading Rilke’s prose, not poems because I hate poems, and he writes a lot about sunlight and how it breaks through windows and how it encounters people’s faces. It was interesting because he has written about sunlight which is a simple thing and I was writing reviews after reviews of punk bands that most of the times are as simple and similar to each other as the sunlight that we enjoy every day. I tried my best but 70% of these reviews are sentences try to bullshit about music that is fast, ugly, dissonant, disordered, desolated, bleak, aggressive, ignorant, beautiful and funny. I don’t really care anymore how it ended up. I do want to be a good writer, I do want to improve and I do think there is more to music than a guitar player who shreds chords and a singer who screams lines which might rhyme. But other times even if something is really good you just can’t express how good it is without starting to speak about awkward, rambled thoughts. Which is fine with me.
I have also learned that critics are useful because they do the dirty job. This is one of the jobs where it’s the purest form of that you gave your time for others. Now if someone wants to know about punk records in 2013 in hungarian they just have to hit up my blog and decide if they trust me or not.
Conclusion One: We use channels (critics with platforms) to learn about new things. There won’t be hordes of bands kicking in my doors, presenting their music. MRR is a channel; blogs are as well as live shows. But I feel like I listen to too many American bands and I wanna find out about bands from more hidden, distant places. I’m sure amazing things are happening there as well.
Conclusion two: Punk is still amazing and fuck everybody who says there is just too much music that has been made. Music is not for critics, not for fans, not for listeners. It’s for people who wanna express themselves in a sonic way. There are people out there writing essays on the subject that there is too much culture and people should might stop making it but at the same time we just shrug our shoulders on the bullshit that is fabricated by the leaders of this world. When and why have we become our own enemies?
I’m also aware of how many bands have I missed to include in my list which is one of the reasons I made this list. I made this list because I hate lists. I can’t put up orders thus I felt I will write about every band. And I wrote about a few. This proves that lists are not sacred and who knows what will be the best thing from 2013 like even in a year from now? Wipers influenced more people in the 00s than they had in their hey days. Does it matter to listen to fresh bands? Are they fresh? We are punx we can do whatever the fuck we want to.
So what do i want to do in 2014? I started putting together a fanzine where i want to have lots of interviews. Never did this, i was never really down for interviews but this is something new i try to do. I will try to use my time way better than i manage with it now. I wanna write short critics on my own language about music, movies and books for my blog, I wanna keep doing shows here at Budapest, I wish Norms will be able to write, record and release a record. I also wanna make other zines, a graphic novel with my girlfriend who is a talented graphic designer. I just want to keep doing my punk things.
What do I expect from 2014? Not really an expectation because I have already heard it but the new White Wards LP is the shit. It’s everything! I also heard the Hysterics 7” (Nah, I don’t get promo shit, sadly, I do use soulseek – szivdkianyadbolageci). Hysterics will play here in May and if any of you ladies are reading this you will be hanging with me and I will make you pizza for breakfast. A month from now I will have Autistic Youth in my room and later Pleasure Leftists, Condominium, etc. 2014 will be sick. I guess every year is a bit better than the one before and 2013 was kinda cool. My band got released on vinyl, we booked shitloads of bands, I did my radio show, continued writing for MRR, joined bands, toured, got together with my girlfriend, left my shit job, was an intern at the coolest news paper in hungary, bought cool records. Check my YETT there I talk about music.
I accept gifts from anyone. Even digital links for non-usa bands.

Saturday, February 8, 2014

Conversation with David West



This summer I had the opportunity to get in the van with Rank Xerox and Rat Columns as they wondered through Europe to present their amazing music. I have met many bands and had the luck to spend some time with them but these fellows were definitely a bunch who stood out. They were funny, smarter than anyone I have met before and just lovely in a punk way. They killed it every night and it was as heartbreaking as life changing to get out of the van just few days later filled with memories that carry on to live vividly in my mind. I thought I will interview the mutual member of these two bands. He is David West a talented musician, anti-authorizer leader and the most fashionable van driver. Besides playing paranoid post punk with Rank/Xerox and landscape-ish bedroom punk with Rat Columns he is a member of Total Control, Burning Sensations and Lace Curtain.


MRR: How did you meet as friends and what were the reasons to pick the specific each other to play music with? And how did you recruit people into Rat Columns since it has started as your solo project? What was appealing for them to join this band?


DW: I met Jon, the drummer from Rank/Xerox, right when I moved to San Francisco. He put on a show in an obscure location outside of the city and I sent him a message on a now obsolete social networking/music website to find out how to get to this obscure location. When I got there he was very friendly and we chatted and within a couple of days I went to his practice space and lo and behold Mr. Kevin McCarthy, the bass player from Rank/Xerox was there too. This was the creation story for that act. For me, the reason to 'pick' them was that I knew nobody else in the entire city. 

I 'recruited' people for Rat Columns based on already being friends with them, and knowing that they could play music. Actually Matt, one of the drummers that plays in the band, was originally playing guitar. Our then drummer quit and Matt casually mentioned that he knew how to play drums. It was a pleasant surprise. He is an amazing drummer! To this day I know not what was appealing about it for them. 


MRR: What do you think about the connection of music and loneliness? As you said you started a band with Jon and Kevin cause they were the only people you knew. So rock and roll is based on a group formation. Still sometimes we are lonely in these bands. Is music for the lonely? The headphones are separating us while they are saving us, when we meet someone who shares the same taste in music we feel like we have found a piece of ourselves that was missing, instant connection. At shows where we are among many people our body language tells we feel alienated, hands in pockets, arms crossed, fist clenched. Still we go there to see people and be in a scene. For you how do these two things music and loneliness collide?


DW: Music is for the lonely, loser-y, lustful, lecherous, illiterate, illegitimate lads and lasses of this world. Music is for those who seek humiliating conditions and reverse parabolically destined lifestyles. Smart people do visual art, graphic design, architecture, literature, fashion, basically everything else. Anyway, I've never been lonely, never felt alone, I've always been accompanied by a small monkey named Fabian who compliments me all the time. I've never been part of a scene. I don't care if someone shares the same taste in music as me. In fact, that would be off-putting, as I have bad taste. Music and loneliness collide like a pasta splashing down into boiling water; the right amount and duration of loneliness makes for a delightful meal, too much and it turns into a soft mushy mess. If you're gluten-free, avoid loneliness.



MRR: What are you influences in creating music? Not just in terms of other musicians and band because as I see your bands Rank / Xerox is self conscious, controlled, even if it’s collapsing it still has an architecture-esque form, while Rat columns is more like sub-conscious, floats  around like a cloud and it rather sounds like feelings and visions since on record it’s so eclectic and free. Both bands are unique I wonder what’s behind the writing of songs, the process as much as the motivations, or triggers and maybe other people’s art as influences too.

DW: Rank/Xerox's songwriting is a torturous collaborative process that might be described under the classic umbrella term of 'jamming'. Rat Columns has collaborative elements and some of the songs are co-written, but much of it is more classic songwriting where somebody writes a song, brings it to the others and they add their fairy dust to it, or not.

Influences are the usual pop culture detritus of the previous century and others. Music, books, movies. And then there are things I would call environmental influences, like stealing scenarios from other people's tortured relationships, urban/rural/pastoral landscapes, exotic lifestyles, ideas, the idea of an idea, Ikea, The Crimea, exotic lifestyles, ape-like creatures, memories, other people's memories, shows I went to, shows I didn't go to, horribly embarrassing situations, triumphant moments, Bleak Moments, the ocean, the desert, farms, rural towns, youth, old age, the future, Renaissance painters, underground car parks, inhabiting another person's body, dance clubs, parties, flashing lights, raves, mind altering substances, walking in the park, Indian food. 

The motivation behind the music is totally unclear to me. Arrogance mixed with boredom, the desire for companionship and naivety? 


MRR: Is there specific process in synthesizing the non-cultural more like life-based inspirations into sounds? I have read that Nabokov connected colors to words so when he was creating sentences, he also did something which in his head was drawing. But it was only in his head. So while it’s a rare thing that people are experiencing the same emotions when encountering something that’s like a song - for you, is there an approach when you want to translate everyday emotions into songs?

DW: Yeah, there is a specific process. Write down the event, subject, feeling onto a piece of paper. Reverse the victim and the victor. That is, make yourself the victor, Viktor. OK, now replace desperation with recalcitrant ambivalence. Scrub out Budapest and replace it with New York City. Erase feelings of inadequacy and insert feelings of non-directional aggression. Blank out crisp white wine and replace with heroin. Replace sweatpants with leather pants. Now sing, with some feeling, but not too much. Pat yourself on the back now. You are PUNK, baby!!!!! This method works for me, every time.


MRR: As I feel Rank / Xerox sounds like it exists in a trapped / hostile environment. Maybe I have told you this but for me sometimes you sound like being in a European block of flats and waiting for nuclear attack to happen during the cold war. A bit Kafkaesque frustration. While Rat Columns is more like out in the nature all alone wondering around. Are these real surroundings you are coming from or are these feelings you wanna create? Is there any feeling you wanna create with your music?

DW: I grew up around nature, on a farm, in rural Western Australia, so that is real, as real as a feeling or impression that somebody else has upon listening to your music can be, which is to say, really quite real, but it is more you than me, no? There are no feelings I want to create in others, but I do want to create feelings in others. It is non-specific. If anything we have done can bring out an interesting and evocative emotion or imagination in somebody else, that is a really pleasant thing. I don't wanna dictate. If we could frame somebody's loneliness into a more self-conceptualized, evocative loneliness, provide some comforting distance from discomfort, comfort via contextualization, or if we can make domestic chores less of a bore, both are fine results. Some say fine cheeses take on an even richer flavor when listening to Rat Columns' first LP. This is a good result too.

I have been in hostile environments but really my life is quite spoiled by global standards. Not everything can be holding hands in a field of flowers or neo-realism and I suppose an evocation of darkness is a luxurious activity for us comfortable westerners. There is a place for luxury. It could be a finely cut leather suit, a walk on the beach, a spare moment to cultivate an alternative persona, a fantasy existence. These are all luxuries. Rank/Xerox is a luxury brand. A luxury band.


MRR: You say Rank / Xerox is a luxury band. Couple days ago I was walking to a date and it was raining. I was listening to a band that sounded like they wrote songs for people who walk alone in autumn rain at night on empty streets. While I was out there I wondered about that what I saw and heard both total fit to each other and I felt like I was at the right place in the right situation. While the day before I lost my job and I couldn’t see my future. But still I felt if I could find joy in moments like this life is all right and everything is gonna be fine. Do you think art is luxury? Is it cheating? Should we wake up?


DW: We are a luxury band. Art is luxury, free time to create is luxurious. Cheating is a sensational sensation and a beautiful act. To be punk is to cheat, ignore rules, ignore morality, ignore the system. No, we should not wake up. To dream is to be granted temporary respite from this disgusting mutant octopus called Life. You experienced a classic synchronicity of sentimentality and circumstance. Slap yourself in the face Viktor. Wake the fuck up!!! The day before, you were an artist. The next, you were a consumer. Love is the drug, and I thought you were straight-edge. The supply of happiness is limited. Save some for me, lover boy.


MRR: Could you explain the violence in Rank / Xerox's music?


DW: There is violence in Rank/Xerox music? It comes from our tortured relationship with one another. When Jon hits the drums particularly hard it is because we have criticized trees in the van earlier in the day. 


MRR: What about the nature in Rat Columns? It feels like when I’m listening to the music while I’m even in a town, the buildings just become things similar to trees or hills. 

DW: That's a really nice image Viktor. That's a real compliment! That's really pleasant to hear. As far as evocation of nature goes, I am a bit of a classicist when it comes to imagery; I stick to things from the pantheon, to my advantage and detriment, so there is a lot of nature, earth and human nature.  Flowers, night, love, loneliness, sadness, dark, light, empty streets, trees, grass, obscure sexual imagery. It's a bit lazy really. Traditional. Classicists are those without the spine to walk into the unknown, generate new ideas, reference the internet, make GIFs? It exists, it is powerful, eternal, I am going to use it. Why not?


MRR: Since there seems to be a boom in coalitions of punk bands and bigger indie labels (with  major distros and coverage in lame media) and because your music could find fans in larger crowds do you feel like you need to act in protection of your music’s integrity?  Would you mind stepping one level up?

DW: Hmmm, I think if you had existed in the 90s you would not be considering our current period much of a 'boom'. 'Punk' bands used to be signed by massive, multinational corporations, not 'major indies'. Going backwards, the Sex Pistols were on Virgin Records. This is a company that also has airlines, mobile phones, space tourism. Royal Trux were signed by a major label and released a record with an overflowing toilet on the cover. Things have been shrinking and shrinking to such an extent that anything beyond your housemate releasing 300 copies of your record is worthy of notice and comment. We are so aware of the machinations behind culture. Your housemate could rip you off, and use your massive profits to buy gourmet Danish rye bread, which you can't eat, because you are gluten-free these days. A major corporation could purchase you, lock you in a room for 3 years, shelve your album, let you out looking like Rip Van Winkle but with a million dollar handshake. Politics and business are worthy of discussion at times, but music and art have their own integrity that is not in the same sphere of existence as 'credibility', social networking, cheese sponsorships, tote bags. In answer to your question, our music is so inscrutably pure and sincere that I feel no need to protect its integrity, and sure, perhaps if I go one level up I will be closer to saving the princess and achieving the highest level of magic and the ability to fly.


MRR: Does the cruel gentrification of San Francisco affects your every days thus your song writings too? Do you feel like leaving the bay area? I know some of you already have.

DW: Hmmm this is such a hot topic. SF is really expensive partially due to gentrification so therefore you need to work more so therefore you have less time to write songs. So it has affected me. It is just like a force of nature, in my eyes, so I don't really think about it as much as some other people. It is a bit of a drag, I must admit. It is an idyllic spot in a lot of ways so people have always wanted to live here, have moved here, over many decades and cultural periods, but right now it is somewhat obnoxious. I don't have anything new or insightful to say about it. We need new industries that generate money that generate jobs for us art scum to work part-time at, but does it have to come at such a severe aesthetic and societal price? Rich people could at the very least, if they are going to change the social fabric of a city, wear beautiful clothes. Flip-flops are not appropriate for San Francisco's climate patterns. Toe shoes are not appropriate for anything. A lot of people have moved from here lately. If you want to live somewhat outside of the mainstream perhaps you can't live in the pop charts. I have left the Bay Area too but you never know, I might come back, perhaps technology is just a fad, lolz.

MRR: You are all engaged with different bands since you are fans of all different kinds of music. So it’s not just you like to listen to different music but also like to  play different sub-genres. What is it that you look for in music? In other people’s music and also in the one you create?


In music I listen to or create, I just look for an combination of evocative melody, noise and/or rhythm, something to take me out of concrete reality for a moment or two. 


MRR: Has it ever happened that you had a song that you liked but couldn’t fit into the whole picture?

DW: All the time! I wrote a lot of songs for Rank/Xerox that were overtly poppy or couldn't be integrated into our group-based writing system for some reason or another. Not good for productivity but good for having a strong identity, I am forced to admit, by my lawyers.


MRR: There seems to be a control in Rank Xerox. Is it shared in an anarchistic way or is there  someone in charge? How much are you a perfectionists? 

DW: There is always control, in everything, ever. I suppose it is democratic, kind of like a democracy where there are also slaves. Early USA? Our level of perfectionism, amongst members, ranges from low to high. I am low level, more based around tossing it off, letting it ride. 


MRR: What is the horror?


DW: Toe shoes. Pop music without melody or songs. 'Janitors' aka stand-up paddleboard surfers taking too many waves, 'yes' you have the ability, 'no' you don't have the right. Flights back to Australia from the Northern Hemisphere. Environmental destruction on a massive scale in developing and non-developing and developed nations that we can't look down upon properly because we have been there and done that, and because we fly around the world guilt-free. People on their phones at the cash register. Sweatshops, the underground buying non-secondhand sportswear. People watching cultural events in person, through their phones. A constant presence, of anything. 

#369

Dear current state of punk,
You don’t exist. Not because you have been dead, betrayed and backstabbed or even worse existed only as an unborn child kept alive just as someone’s fantasy. None of these.  I’m not even over you and this is no place to make spiky, chained folks to the butt of any jokes and I swear this will go without any intention to make anyone feel shitty who like me is listening right now to Isterismo or fuck it even to Toy Dolls (which I do not) and wearing boots (which I do) or leather jackets indoors (I have an anorak on). It’s just that there is no fucking current state of punk. Never was, never will be. It’s a fucking bottle that has been labeled. It could be smashed and then it could be replaced with another jar. There could be million labels and million bottles. The only thing that should be important in this allegory is that it’s an empty space so whatever you pour into it that’s what you get cause it’s your space.
You don’t like kids being apathetic?
You don’t like bands being boring?
You need something new, something interesting?
Then either find it, make it, realize it but shout up if you don’t do anything. If you had done anything then you wouldn’t complain. (yeah, you would as I do most of the time but please follow me) My heart has been broken million times when I saw people just shrug their shoulders on the scum who beat or rape women in our scene, who are friends with nazis, people who are just the worst human beings. My heart breaks even when friends and self-proclaimed music enthusiasts rather hang in front of shows and drink cheap wine than come down and support local promoters like myself. I’m not against having fun and pointless hangings but I have different level of fun when I witness people perform their angst in front of me than with chugging shitty beer on a piss soaked bench. I have spent a fortune on getting shitfaced on pointless weekday nights still I rather spend my money to eat something good or buy a record. Although I still think drinking beer is fun and smoking cigarettes are fucking cool but don’t get addicted to any. Get addicted to buying records and attending shows. And carrying about what’s good for your fucking mental health punx!!!   
Back to crying over the non-existing current state of punk: Most of the people are fucking stupid and the only fact that they probably listen to let’s say Faith, well it won’t make them better or smarter or anything. It’ simply that they share one thing common with you or with me cause I do love Faith and probably think 80% of their fans are people I’m lucky I don’t know. Still I could love the fact that someone does listen to them but again it’s just my enthusiasm towards that band what is reflected on someone else. I like you because you are like me, I was so lonely now I have found you who is another version of me. This is how I made most of my friends but luckily they proved to be more than just people with similar taste in music.
Today I’ve learned my girlfriend also loves Modern Lovers. Do I love her more now? No because I’m already head over heels with her and there is no chance I could love her more than I did before I have learned this fact. She would be perfect even if she was listening to elevator music.
The music we listen to, the basic principles we believe in, there should be more to define us. And remember the fact alone that someone does punk in a way that’s lame to you - it won’t make them terrible humans. JUST TERRIBLE PUNX!!!!
So why are we so needy, obsessed, concerned and chained to people who are dumb, lame or just have different ideas about how to do their own punk thus giving us hard times? Care about your friends if you need company in all this. About people whom you are doing something together. You don’t even have to be best friends with your band mates and partners in crime either. It’s better if you could spend time with them even when you are not doing punk things and please don’t play with people just because they are schooled musicians but being in a creative and time consuming project with other people sometimes could lead to places and situations where you don’t wanna end up with your best friends cause you could lose them there and then over few seconds in a stupid punk song. I’m saying this while I have only played together with people who I count among my best friends and it’s a happy marriage. So care about people who cares about you. Don’t waste your precious time being upset on assholes. Be a freak that will scare them away.
I don’t want to disrespect the hard work everybody is doing to fill and run this magazine but when I got bored of all the interviews that said nothing to me (and this problem was based in me) I started interviewing bands I do like and asked questions I do care about. I don’t live there, I don’t speak the language properly I’m not even that smart. I only have the will that has been gathered in me when I don’t like what is the current state of punk. Then I change it. Not for you but foremost for myself. And you will decide if you like it or not. I’m glad if you do and I will be a bit hurt if you don’t, still if the process is fun enough it could overwrite any cruel but righteous criticism.
There is a changing dynamic of how I approach my friends, the scene, local bands but all of them are still growing, improving and at the same time staying the same. Things will happen if you try to make a change for yourself and not sacrifice yourself to try to change other people or be bothered by how different their attitude from yours. Just do whatever the fuck that makes you happy and if you are lucky enough to create your own bubble where you could be as much of a freak as you want then you will be happy.
Two of the bands I play in now went on tour and since they include the full membership of Piss Crystals they played as well. Seven people, three bands, one constantly stoned driver, one friend who came along. We played three nights at Pécs (H), Graz (A), Zagreb (HR). It was beyond fun. Shows with good turn outs, great vibes and all of us played tight sets. On our last night we bought some weed and I hate to play while stoned but I gave a little chance. A sketchy weirdo skinhead guy smoked with us and this meant he inhaled half of our spliffs (we launched two) in one take. He hung with us for 10 minutes and spent the next 3 hours sitting in the corner being paranoid of weed only staring in front of him.
We played a set with Norms and it was amazing. I felt like this was the sense of playing music with people you respect with whom you created something that is above your everydays. There was that unidentified energy that was bouncing among us and it felt like I was feeling what they have felt as well. When everything that is haunting you through months transform into the power that is the engine in your body that is playing these songs. I felt like something grabbed me. It was amazing. Seriously, form a band!
Then I played bass for Zen Fascists in shades in a room that had no lights just red and blue flashes. We covered TV Casualty from the Misfits and it felt like we played that song for 2 hours but it was amazing two hours. That monotony and growing tension of the song had hypnotized me. While everyone else from our crew was moshing out crippled moves.
We knocked ourselves out from reality through these three days. We were just a bunch of weirdo creeps playing shitty music to people who appreciated this. And that was our scene, that was our bubble and that was our punk. We didn’t achieved, changed or proved anything. It was just good and after all that’s what matters.
On the road I was wondering on few things when I was not punching the air to the first Cock Sparer record. That shit is so good it sounds like really slim scumbag powr pop fans are making evil music to threaten people with knives.
Anyway, who the fuck listens to hardcore? Seriously half of those bands are preaching about how important it is to have a personality for yourself. Which is cool but these bands sound like this is a serious problem in their scene and very few people are having an individual identity since every 3rd song is about this case. Is there really people who has no personality even if they are awful? Being an asshole counts as being something. And songs like these will change anything?
Also how can someone be backstabbed and why are people sad because others change? I have some ideas but is it really happening all the time? This would mean hardcore fans are probably the scummiest people ever on the face of earth. Is it masochism then what leads people to spend their time listening to bands who are questioning them? Is it a mental punch they need in a more digestible form of every day humiliation? I love many of these bands but some of them sound like dorks who wish to be jocks. Stop writing lyrics in the locker room if you want to be taken serious by people who are old enough to consume alcohol and smart enough to read a book.

I also realized that my heart is with people who feel alienated and awkward even at a hardcore show and it doesn’t mean she or he is not the fan of the genre just feel weird even on their night out. Why not? Sometimes I couldn’t even find my place at band rehearsals. It’s okay to feel alienated sometimes.
I also fucking hate bands preaching against being political. It doesn’t mean you need a degree in political science but talking about almost anything is political in this day and age. Wake the fuck up there are no ideologies left it’s just us being afraid of the downfall of this system. Everything is politics. Even having a self to be.
Anyway the end is near and of course I did not started writing together the bands I will pick to include on my year end top ten even though I already got the memo that I was picked as a list maker. I rather listen to European bands from decades ago.
I love living in Europe cause every country has another culture, another approach for the same thing. And while I love in good music that the component of it being universal in the sense that it’s so good it could have been made by anyone, anytime anywhere. Thus while bands here have a prolific sound that could be connected to where they are from the good ones are also universal.
Have you heard Rapt from France? Really ferocious and disgusting hardcore, super fast, noisy and it runs brutality through confused kids who are angry as fuck. Just hardcore perfection played by punks. As fast the music doesn’t make any sense only the fact that it is played by the youth. They sound if they were drunk by the awakening of they could do anything they want. So they made this beautiful mess.
I rarely listen to Hungarian punk bands. Old, legendary ones. The reason is even if those bands were good, the recordings are terrible. I love lo-fi and noise but these are the ones what makes you angry in a bad way. Due to the recording and pressing industries were controlled by the commies it was illegal to record and distribute anything that was not okayed by the government. Pressing on Vinyl was out of question. Thus very few bands had recording that are not painful to listen to.
Other problem for me is how we Hungarians are. I mean this fucking column is about me preaching to the whole universe. Some of these bands just tucked everything in their music. They wanted to do everything at the same time and it just turned out to be some super annoying weirdo music, and even though this description sounds cool the actual records aren’t that good at all. But there are exceptions.
My friends were talking about a video of a local legendary band 88-as Csoport which I have rewatched again and it lead me to discover this amazing Hungarian band called Biztonsági Tanács. They are amazing. I have only seen a picture of their singer who looks like how Brainbombs sound but their music is distant from this. It’s crazy, and fast and noisy while it holds some melodic edge to it. Just perfect hardcore / punk. With enough stupid jokes as tape manipulation between songs. Their later songs include clarinet and they have replaced their singer with a girl. Still they sound good. Go in youtube and search for BiztonságiTanács – Demo. Crazy good.  
Whatever. Stop irony.

#368

My girlfriend left me her last cigarette what I’d just finished smoking. Then I did the dishes, cleaned out all the disgusting black mold from the microwave oven which she luckily haven’t seen and now I’m waiting for my water to boil up so I can put a tea filter in it. It’s not even midnight but I don’t care. Flux of Pink Indians is on and I plan to blast records till I finish this piece. If I won’t cheat myself into watching Sherlock Holmes with Jeremy Brett for hours till I fall asleep.
I was lurking on that webpage for socializing with friends and I was wondering on the difference between my life and my high school classmates’ who are sharing photos of their weddings and newborn babies. I never thought happiness is what I do. I never thought that norms are unhappy although many times it has been proven that they kinda are. I’m not taking a cruise in the ocean of happiness and calm either so who knows the secret?
Some tend to say ignorance is bliss but truth be told I don’t know that much about life and the right way to live it either. I’m all right with the way I’m but I’ve always missed something. There was just always such a lack of something minor inside of me what was missed majorly. But nowadays I feel that I’m drifting towards a point where I could be satisfied with all this.
I feel weird writing these things that are the constant anxiety echoes in my head but punk is my life thus I think when I share these thoughts I’m still writing about punk a bit. About my punk. To survive it as an eastern European. 
This week I booked a show for Big Eyes. I’m far from calling myself a fan of pop punk but I have found their ‘90s college rock vibe charming. Big Eyes played a great show and they were nice people to have around. We were watching together how the bass player of Guided By Voices ate shit after a sketchy jump while performing live on Letterman before we went out sightseeing. And instead of getting super drunk we were watching lame ‘90s horror shows for American kids and reading news about some creepy hotel. Awkward raging.
Then yesterday I went to a skate contest where a couple of my friends’ bands played. It was amazing. Having friends and skaters next to a local train’s rail line on a blown out concrete field. Just cool people, cheap beer, the setting sun and live punk music on the outskirts of Budapest. It sat the mood for the show later that night where I played with one of the bands that I’m in. I say it like this because it’s my friend’s solo project and I don’t write my parts I just play them live. It’s kinda refreshing since with many different things I have to do more than just play as hard as I can and try not to fuck up. So this simple task is my vacation in punk. Still it’s amazing to be in this band and play hardcore-ish d-beat raw punk. Hardcore for the abused and mutants. The show was amazing but it’s not a surprise when you put hundred and plus drunk punx into a rehearsal room and let their angst come out. Then joy will fill the air that makes you drunker than cheap booze. Mostly I was hanging with my girlfriend between and after the shows. It was refreshing. I’m really losing touch with keeping up my social life. It’s not that I hate people it’s that I was never really here for company.
I never really believed that punk is a shelter in the sense of we need each other that much to survive. I say this while 90% of my friends are punx and together we saved our lives and built something marvelous. Although most of the people I know are bond to this lifestyle but even among friends most of the times I feel solitude. It’s not really their fault and I know that strength is in each other but it’s just the way I was raised. I can’t trust people in a way as I could convince myself that I’m able to rely on them when I would be in trouble. And since I’m always afraid I am in trouble I hardly feel safe even among friends. So I have decided I will be concerned about the bare minimum of other people’s problems that type which could be solved by them too. With this free time I will focus on my own shit and try to make my girlfriend happy.

Thing I hate about the scene is when people act like they are above it. Ironics and cynicals are the plague of everything. For them everything is a trend what might be half true but half righteous as well. That’s lame. I don’t like people using punk because through this it might be easier to achieve some status somewhere. LEECHES! Is it elitism to think that your thing is more than the scene that you are a part of? Not the elitism that is accepted by me if there is any sort of. Anyway go fuck yourselves.
While I’m saying this I’m listening to Missing Foundation but I swear today I have spent a tram ride with listening to DYS and I’m planning for a week now to sit down next to my turn table and go through the complete discography of Minor Threat. Find something new in their evergreen tunes.
Tonight I have watched some Cult Ritual live videos. That band really was something and what they have created is still here. They were part of a huge movement for sure, if we can call something a movement that has separated elements and huge if huge means thousand people from all around the world thinking their lp is great. And it still is something I love to listen to. It’s the same with Sex Vid. Both bands are seemingly full with fans of damaged music that feeds it’s intensity from their lives. I hope they had less haunted lives than their music but just being complete nerds, freaks and misfits can be a good nest of amazing punk songs. I don’t know them for sure. But just looking on someone and hearing their music could tell a lot about them.
The thing is the more I listen to music like proto-techno post punk or Mongolian throat singers or trippy kraut rock I appreciate the power of punk more. Not because these sounds are that terrible they remind me that punk is the best, it’s the best because it is for me. Because music is life and good music is real life. I won’t say that there are only good and bad music but there is power that could be put into almost every genre and if it’s there almost everything could sound cool. Reasonable things, not prog-rock, white dad jazz or trippy hippy shits.
Let’s dig in. Due to a pretty legit list that could be found at the www.swedishpunkfanzines.com I spent some recent time discovering and re-listening to Scandinavian hardcore. It’s amazing how most of those bands are carrying that inherrited ability of infusing perfect melodies into their music. And while it’s raging, fast and reckless still there is another layer to it which is pure hit material. Like something beautiful that is damaged or vica versa.
We tend to mention Scandinavian rage along with Japanese hardcore but even though I’m a fan of both scenes and even these days the land of rising sun is a returning guest in my mind and listening devices but they are better at making a grotesque mess that is dangerous to dig into and when you dip in this world of glowing fetish and hyper activism it feels like a childish marvel on the strangeness of humans. Yes, I did listen to LSD this week.
Scandinavian hardcore is different from this. Take Bannlyst who are amazing. Their arsenal contains neck breaking speed, filth and amateurism. In my head they resonate as early Agnostic Front. Or as how I hear Agnostic Front. How AF appeared on a cable show without one of their members, switching instruments, pretending they are playing on them. This chaos with the skandinavian melodies I was detailing above equals a really unique sound. And I’m talking now about a 7” that was released decades ago and still it could save my day.
And fuck, I love the first Sods record. All of its various sounds. From where it departs till where it arrives. Thank you technology for guitars.
More music. I’m blasting the B side of my Siege lp right now.


Two days before I was lying in my bed jamming Crisis after listening to Can’s lost tapes beyond midnight hours to have something as an escort to my sleepy eyes and dead end thoughts. I love the weirdly good quality of these anarcho fellows’s songwriting. Crisis has songs you can actually dance to. In your mind, with your mind. On the imaginary grave of fascist cops and collapsed governments. I call this the english groove cause post punk there was about heavy bass beats and song structures that made you jump. Not how pothead, paranoid slacker rock as post-hardcore was in America. Europe is about dancing foolz!
I love anarcho punk and I love post punk and I love the vicious bleakness of that failed futurism that was happening at the same time these bands have existed. Have you heard the Division Four demo, ep, mini lp whatever it is? It sounds like as if Kubrick would hired an Oi band to score Clockwork Orange II where Robo Cop is being harassed by ultraviolent but poetically sad rude boys. While in the background something so new that is already expired is happening like a broken dream that is still sealed. On the front we have some indolent vocals with dumb/scared lyrics on how lame humans are even today. It’s really really good. Australia is on fire fool if that flame has ever been taken out. Love their obvious weirdness. I’m still in love with Total Control. To take pills to remember to take pills to forget.

The end of this year is getting closer so it’s gonna be a time when I should re-listen to most of the records I liked this year. Lists are still stupid but maybe it should be a shame to let actually good records be forgotten. Was there a record this year as memorable as Cult Ritual’s lp or anything Sex Vid ever put out? Maybe. Every year is a good year in punk. Cause punk makes a year great.

I tend to detail here nights that I have spent with visiting random rehearsals and this time I will again tell you that I was at a military object’s abandoned building that was functioning as a dress storage for an armature theater company and in some extra room there was a practice space for bands. We asked the renter bands to let us sneak in to play our set before a show we had that night. Because we had time to kill, half of my band got high after practice while I was just sitting still and listening to some jammed out fuzz fused stoner weird rock that was played by complete weirdoes.
I adore those kids because they seem to not give a fuck at all about anything that is not serving their desire to get joy out of desolated nights. Those types who can walk a mile just to get a cigarette in freezing cold still wearing only a shirt and not even shrugging their shoulders. Survivors. It’s not Kids at Budapest in 2013. These kids are modern age bohemians. Intellectuals who seem to have time for everything because they have perverted time. They spend their hours giving it to art and trash only to learn one thing about life and many of these times the award is only a question. But instead of paintings and poems they use music, cartoons and shitloads of weed.
What I was thinking about is how many amazing bands are doing something in hidden rooms? Those who are lazy or unmotivated to record and put out their sounds. Those who go into rooms and turn their backs on the world and get disconnected to the rule what their nation is forcing on them. Then I felt that creating music is universal. Because they had no intention to do anything with it. Is this happening anywhere else? Unsaid thought, unwritten novels, unrecorded songs, unlived romances? Do I wanna hear them or would that spoil everything? Should it be a secret what we do?

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

HUNGARIAN SCENE REPORT (unedited)

It’s strange.
I have written a scene report focusing on mostly the people who are then started to become my friends and since all of them had bands, all of them were practicing almost at the same place and all of them were hanging at almost every show. So I made up a name as a joke to call this group of ours somehow. Since then more than two years have passed and now I felt that there is still music played by Magyars that deserves to be covered.
It deserves to be covered because every scene needs representation. It’s the know how of how we live among each other, how we create something new, what’s different to other places or how is it similar almost everywhere. This is not gonna be just facts, the number of local bands are much more than the sum that will appear within these lines. It’s just the bands i enjoy the most whom I like to swing my beer to at weekday shows when I forget the rest of my weekdays.

 The scene I wrote about two years ago, the Defekt scene, is having it’s dusk. The rehearsal room that even some foreign bands had experienced and was a center of late night hangouts, and crazy jamming, crawling on the floor and spontaneous festivals just failing cause of slacking. Get 30 punx and try to squeeze money out of them every month right on deadline time. Until this cataclysm, the room has served as a great space to create so much joy and friendships, new bands, new project, served as a recording space and as the perfect hangout spot. Among the filth there was always treasure.
But people are getting older thus have to have more responsibility and the parties what once were crazy, nihilist and utterly weird are now just became mellow hangings and early goodbyes due to waking up early at painful hangover mornings. But it seems that since the nihilism disappeared bands are becoming better.
With the political system and the whole world and how it’s working just getting worse and worse here there are still people not just shrugging their shoulders and joining the line but trying to create their own secret world, their own platform to express themselves and have a huge fucking amount of fun either as a threat or as protection.

Hungary has been put on the map. Budapest and Szeged are hosting all the great shows for touring bands from all around the world and other cities are holding possibilities for punx with free time to maintain their teenage riot. Pécs and Debrecen are on fire as well as Győr and it’s region who are being solid columns of the Hungarian punk underground for years.
The main agenda here is: Things must happen. If a band wants to come here and the promoter feels like he needs to book them, it will happen even if at a collapsing rehearsal room or around a tree in the beer garden of a medieval castle's yard or in the basement in some burn out bar for burn out people. And if there is the right amount of people with the right type of mood, magic could happen. If there is one thing that people here are good at is lose there shit to bands they can be enthusiastic about.
Standing in the middle between east and west and interestingly exotic and professionally good punk the one time when Hungary could be a champion is when we are appreciating the bands who have come here. The Hungarian soul is tired and doesn’t really look outside of it’s own room thus when people came into our rooms then we are filled with gratitude.
Having many people even in my room I have learnt through others’ stories it’s almost the same everywhere else. You just have to start doing things on your own and if you have the will you will at least end up with a scene that is your home.
Just put yourself out when you have something. Or invite the world inside your room if you have nothing. Share with the world and open your fucking eyes and help, appreciate, love what you have around you. Just try and do and the rest will follow.

From the punk house-like rehearsal space that was a living room for many of us for years, from the forever collapsing ruins of the defekt scene few bands have grown out at the finale moments of decline. The always balancing into an abyss, drug dazed pop punk of FOR MY FRIENDS have transformed into FAKE SHAKES which still has a bearded soul and an indolent but in every chord youthful sound that is performed by various kinds of kids who like to hang out, do crazy things as they are obsessed with climbing to high places while high and this has lead to many atrocities with people being protective about their roofs. Their warm hearted but cold faced melodic songs have rather filth and pining over let downs of either assholes or failed romances than about shining happiness of bubble gum pop. They are those weird kids who sit at the back of your house party and smash things not because they are here to destroy but only because they are like this. Nowadays I try to be late from their shows but since I’m that kind of guy who always there too early I always end up watching them and when I do I do not regret it.

LÖMBIHEAD was something like a quintessence of the Defekt scene with playing music they have figured out for themselves and having shows as weird as it could be or as how drunk they were. People getting naked, the band getting naked, then there was a solo, some improvised chant on teenage sadness fueled by frustration, just total chaos. After some line up changes and a semi-legendary last show they have formed TUMO with which they are writing new songs, having a slight different approach on strange music and they have a new drummer as well. Their music and lyrics still feel like it’s haunted by dementia or demons. They left behind the surf feel from their previous music and replaced themselves from a nuclear beach into a rotting garden where they play this Rev. Summer influenced SST vibe guitar jamming still punk based forever rock. Rock music for a fermenting society. Sticking to their awkwardness their live shows keep being strange, with changing instruments between members and looking as weird as it’s up to what drugs are influencing them in the moment. Having some trouble with finding a drummer and being disorganized nihilists they have only recorded two of their songs with slacking howling vocals but maybe the future is holding some luck for us and they will came out with a proper but still damaged release in the future. One thing for sure when they willing to play their instruments and focus a bit magic is happening and this utterly creative guitar jams start to work as perfect slacker punk songs for all your doubts and paranoia. You might follow.

For mutant rockers there is PISS CRYSTALS. Started out as a project of two friends who were in dozen bands so if one of their bands had to cancel a show out of boredom these two guys created PISS CRYSTALS to be a fill in band so they would be able to travel and play anyway. The weird mix of everything that J Mascis has ever done starting from DEEP WOUND through DINOSAUR JR. till riffing ‘Sabbath-ish doom with pinch influences of kraut rock, PISS CRYSTALS is a band of music buffs who wanna entertain themselves. Never been taken seriously, still they are a core of a scene of bored youth, thus always being a lot more than juts noise. Sometimes their rehearsals transform into a huge hangout where at one point everybody is freestyle rapping to dumb beats provided via a broken Casio. Live they always end their sets with freestyle rants against the punk scene’s stupidity. It is punk music because it’s played by punk kids who like music and weird ideas and noise and have enthusiasm over professionalism.

ZEN FASCISTS has formed from the ruins of PLAN BEER with taking a circle run and sitting behind different instruments but having almost the same members on different positions. The music that was once guitar driven and smart and punk now has turned into something more simple and threatening with it’s balanceless bouncing. Oi influenced noisy and grooving, aggressive hardcore with lyrics about being a loser and lost in social life. They are not menace, it’s the world that is and through their music and lyrics it’s even more bizarre. Rage fueled with awkwardness this band has the least hardcore look and the geekiest approach of playing fast punk music. The name comes from a DEAD KENNEDYS song so they have no romantic relation to such bad people as far right wing extremists. Having just a demo recorded and two shows played after rotting in a rehearsal room for years and finally recruiting a bass player for live shows and writing future riffs, ZEN FASCISTS is a new but a mostly promising band.

Another fine mutant band is Wryness. The most flaky pothead band of all. Started out as TEKKEN (yeah the video game) but after some line up changes they had their name changed as well. There is just something magical in the experience of witnessing WRYNESS play. I loved them all the time when they played in rehearsal rooms. That fragile beauty that they carry with being more of the visceral players of their instruments than trained ones. Their bass player learnt to play bass on a two days speed trip when he couldn't sleep so he figured out how to jam. Their sets are always paused by recesses to drink beer, smoke weed or huff some rush. Their music is strange. Since they attempted to make as many weird pacing changes in their music as they can. This makes the whole sound a collapsing one but on their middle tempo runs they emerge the floating paranoia of the kids of the black hole. Somehow the band is so little, still they could sound really huge. One by one their tracks would not stand out alone but over all especially in live or listening to their whole album to have your soul soaked in their desperate and desolated lyrics is an experience we always search for in punk music. It’s like old hungarian punk, or KAAOS. Finnish or Japanese hardcore. They sound like a group that has only read about hardcore and put it together in their heads not as if they have first hand experiences with the genre. It’s punk played by the beaten more like an idea of how they should sound and not following rules. They born outside the box.

MUDPIE is a quiet new band formed roughly a year ago. Their take on punk music is backed with longer songs which gave enough space for them to play out their post punkish post hardcore-ish riffs. They have weird melodies that are just as much catchy as it sucks you into a vortex of anxiety and gloom. They stay in mid tempo but the vocals are harsh and mostly screaming while the lyrics move on a personal level digesting everyday disappointments and bedroom frustrations. Their music is moving forward coming out from the headphones. They are awkward in a lovely way and beyond their never smiling live presence is some focused, teeth grinding will to play their songs in the best way. They are not changing the world or challenging you with their music still you can lose yourself in their flood of stretched out guitar riffs and relatable gloom.

VEX is a punk band with a bit raging and collapsing hardcore influenced music. Pure and fast, inspired by the early era of amazing west coast hardcore they also have some dry melodies infused into their sound. They are always rehearsing and occasionally playing with adorable awkwardness. Not melting anyone’s face still they are forcing out all the frustration from themselves. In a way they don’t seem to have too many ideas of how and what they wanna play, but they are doing it anyways cause they are sure they wanna do it. Strange pace changes and just lively ideas of the whole structure of songs with sometimes solos that sound like they are on psychedelic drugs. It’s fun to see them play and go along with their version of doing punk. I mean being drunk, being punk, being at a basement and seeing such bands is just magical, or it could be that and I’m glad that I belong to such a scene. Oh by the way all the members of VEX are girls.  

NORMS is a band where I sing so I try not to swallow my own dick too deep. We play fast hardcore punk soaked in disgusting noise.

Some bands bring the whole scene together with their unavoidable awesomeness that none of the followers of the various sub genres could deny.
HUMAN ERROR is one of the oldest running bands in Hungary who are still fresh and have not stopped for a second to take a break. They had myriads of members but still holding two original ones. They play merciless crust/grind music that is not a style I really love but their live sets are just pure energy of punk perfection this way becoming a devoted fan of theirs is not a tough job. They go way beyond genres and styles it’s just that force that is marching down from the stage in a form of an evil black mass that will push you down or grab you in. They have an agenda to clear out and set straight the confused minds who have been lost in the muddy forest of business grind and false punk. They hate their works and on their own way they are survivors because they have their eyes open enough to see the horrors of everyday and feel threatened by it. Not as if they are squatting and fighting the cops all the time, since in Hungary there’s no such thing as a squatter - street protest scene. It’s just that resistance that resonates in them. They are frequently touring and booking bands from all over Europe here in Budapest. Silently they climbed up to some legendary position that they have never self proclaimed. It’s simply staying true to what you are believing and doing it in the way you feel like it’s right. And at one point your shows will just become huge events in punk terms and people will bounce their every day struggle out from themselves on your shows. It’s not easy to keep a band running for 15 years and it only happens on very rare occasions that a band after this long time still could be fresh and not burnt out. They have just recorded an upcoming full length which is much anticipated. And seeing them on stage they are not a slight different from all the young kids blasting their music they play to escape high school reality. Only HUMAN ERROR’s angst is rooted deeper and they have less mercy. 

Their guitarist who was the latest addition to the band and has been playing for more than a decade in decent bands and in a way forming the face of Hungarian hardcore/punk but he is with them for 5 years now. He has a solo project called DISKOBRA which is a great mix of old Hungarian punk/hardcore and some DISCHARGE worship DIScore. The overall damaged flavor is coming together with drunk rage against the inexplicable bullshit of this world we are living in. His simple but sharp lyrics and plain but striking songs serve as a perfect background music if you are having an angst rush. It’s the voice of your friend who reminds himself how cruel life is sometimes and goes on diatribe rant at some point of a night spent with chugging cheap liquor. He plays live shows with a full band and the things that have been said between songs are just pooping the party that much that people realize the outside world is a trap and only our spaces could bring us temporary joy. It’s just good to see people slowly leaving their 30s still giving a fuck, doing new things and caring about the present and future rather than blame the now by glorifying their past because they have become old. People like him are as much inspiration as young kids having no fucking idea on what to play and just blast out wonderfully shitty noise. It’s the angst and endurance for still giving a fuck that is magic in everyone who are willing to create. And DISKOBRA is a total keeper of raw, fast and disgusting hardcore/punk.

CHAPPA’ AI is a noise band what is distant from our planet thus labeled as space grind made up with Stargate fans who share the drummer with DISKOBRA and HUMAN ERROR. This group of total creeps and misfits plays a confusing mix of speed freak grind and harsh noise. Somehow transforming their live shows into a performance art preformed by people who are the furthest from doing anything with art and performance. It’s their weirdness and love for bizarre noises that keeps the band running. And of course a shitloads of weed. 

RÁKOSI has become one of the other longest running bands of the scene who are loved by everyone. Starting as a guerrilla band who though uninvited showed up at random shows to take over the stage for their shocking 5 minutes sets. They have become one of the well known Hungarian bands since LENGUA ARMADA has released three of their demos on two 7”s. They still are about what’s mostly happening in their hometown where guitarist and singer still live. How the countryside is going bankrupt as much financially as morally. They have a strange method of writing songs since the last two demos were written and recorded during weekends. As the first note was played for the first time on a Friday afternoon, after they freshly had escaped from a week long work, on Sunday evening they had their new songs recorded. Somehow they are able to transform the hungarian frustration into punk hardcore perfection. With their shows becoming gatherings where the punk and hardcore kids find themselves among each other sweating their desperation out. Most of the people couldn't really understand the specific topics this band is singing about but they can feel the anger and scorn that they have. They do have the issue of being a bit stuck in Hungary since they only go if they are invited but even this way they still could stay fresh and as time goes by more people love them. What they deserve for sure. They are the absolute beast of the Hungarian punk noise wall that is standing as a defense of your frustration that you might have to shelter in your everyday but since it’s totally normal to have it and let it out sometimes their shows are the best places for this explosion.

The half of RÁKOSI lives in Szeged. Szeged is a little treasure box near to the Serbian border. It’s a small city with few people who are willing to sacrifice too much of their time to from new bands on every weekend, rot in rehearsal rooms for endless hours and book cool shows. Most of the bands are sharing members since seemingly the whole city has only two drummers for eight bands. The method is, instead of packing everything they like in every music into one band they create new bands for all the micro-sub-genres they like and listen to. One thing is sure, most of the bands are heavily guitar driven. Let it be the cornerstone of the modern scene KEMÉNY HENRIK with all members from ex and current bands. Playing music that is post. Not the sounds of future but they are bringing the post from everything especially from hardcore / punk and while it’s being a fact that they are playing punk, they play their guitars that much and have an overall sound that launches them into their own space. It’s funny since the members out of the stage seem so unorganized and strange while on stage and on record there is full control. Lyrics are varying between Hungarian and English and it’s just amazing punk profession that they play.

Bands connected to this group are ARGUMENT CLINIC who are bringing the modern interpretation of the core Ramones-ish music with finally a singer who could use a bit his voice and they for sure are delivering catchy melodies and BERKUT who are a new group formed from IMPERIAL SPIES and RÁKOSI and SPARK and KEMÉNY HENRIK. Being a tornado of guitar sounds BERKUT (written with ciril fonts) is crushing, interesting, challenging, untamed force of smart rage. Like a formula that knows what and how will destroy. They only played few official and non official secret shows and a demo is about to be recorded. The future is unwritten.

This town is a perfect example for if you have the good people and the will you will make great things together. Do you wanna conquer the world? All right, but even if you don’t succeed you will need people around you, you can hang with, sit through nights in bars or play the best music is possible: Your music. Organize shows, or just cook offs. Movie clubs and collective radio shows. Have million other bands there and just be supportive. Try to do Food not Bomb cooking for the homeless. Fill bars with their yelling. Open their farm for festivals and recording sessions. This is what Szeged does.
 
Just like Győr and it’s region. That place for me feels like a bubble. With so many strange and alienated kids. During this summer I went there to play at a local festival. It was amazing. There was one point when I was hanging in this kitchen of a nice family house. Four shaved headed guys were around me. They are YOUTH VIOLENCE. I was eating their pizza, they were eating freshly picked cherry. Making fun of each other, throwing the cherry stone on each other. They were worried of whether they could buy weed later or not. Few hours later in a room that was dripping in sweat they just start to execute all your hope. With homemade distortion pedals and with homemade anger they start to boom. Their music is fast the lyrics are desperate and angry in another level. It’s just pure hate of the unfair world that is keeping them in constant struggle. But also it’s the sound of joy that they still could give a fuck enough to transform this into something so powerful that through projecting the daily shit something beautiful comes out.
Their bass player and drummer have another project called WHO SAWS VIOLENCE REAPS STORM. More complex and darker band with literary-like lyrics about all the familiar sufferings. The members look so weird like they have their own little world which I’m almost sure they really do.

Life in Hungary could be a struggle and they say from such a desolated soil great things could grow out. Artistically and not biologically. There is one band that is just robbing everyone’s heart with their honesty of how they are painting their picture of every days spent with surviving the oppression. It’s ANOTHER WAY. Having a member who is working 12 hours shifts at a shitty blown out industry and other two members being all around the world all the time to release a new full length it toke many years for them. Once an unstoppable band that just played everywhere for almost nothing but played there hearts out all the time seemed to be vanished for some years. Having line up changes and inner conflicts they are back and everybody is bowing their heads in front of them. ANOTHER WAY is basically three weirdos playing as fast as they are angry and they are really angry. They are originated in a small rural town in Hungary with no hope so they paved their way out from this reality with every raging song they have written. You can call it fastcore, power violence, hardcore or punk. This is just angry music played in Hungary by people who still do care and kept hanging on to their teen angst. With some metallic riffing after taste. This band is another universe. They live by their on terms and while the whole scene is watching what are they up to they are just going on their own way. Hermits of the punk scene who appear to show how and what their universe is. The much anticipated full length that has been delivered this year is a great testament of their still burning torch. With having parts where even they couldn't keep up with the speed they are playing on, still they are a nonstop ugly terror that pours on you as a tsunami.  

Those who not only seek self relief but have a bigger plan with all this, they are RIVERS RUN DRY and their label / collective the DZSUKHELL RECORDS. RIVERS RUN DRY has started out as something like epic or neo-crust with three guitars and very long songs. But since two of the members are living in different squats in different countries seeing them in all together when not on tour is as rare as seeing the whole WU TANG CLAN on one stage. Now they have perfected this dark-heavy sound into something that is no longer crust or punk but just this dark mass that is sucking you in and not letting you out. With having enough span and space in their songs for the instruments to send out on adventure missions there is always something that could grab you. To be honest I like music that is simpler and less constructed but live even I could be a believer since they are so heavy and unstoppable. Also they are carrying a distro with books, zines, records. They are putting shows and releasing records from the local scene. Proving it’s not such an extra job to put or keep some meaning in all this. Heard their rehearsals feel like a picnic with eating cakes, drinking tea and discussing issues of life. These guys are strong column of the Budapest diy scene.  


This is it.

most of the bands' music (among other local bands) could be found here: 
http://heart-a-tact.blogspot.hu/