th'Inbred-Reproduction; Frozen Sound Studio, 1985
Starting out this trip east with West Virginia's Hardcore Punk champs th'Inbred, we find the group addressing all manner of important topics in the minds of mid-1980's underground: the vapidity of MTV and guys with money that have a desire to go to Hardcore shows, the banality of work, the Fascistic tendencies of the good 'ole U.S. of A, and so forth. Listening to these screeds, Disaster Amnesiac has been ruminating on how Hardcore Punk was in many ways more of a verbal development than musical; don't get me wrong th'Inbred's music is tight and nicely arranged, buzzing along in a sort of speedy Prog manner at times. It's just that the texts seem to have taken precedence over the music in so much Hardcore. The cultural dynamics that they railed against are still in place, so I'm not sure how much real change was effected, buy, hey, at least they documented their ragin' chops and anger before all of that weirdness that came along in the 1990's! I must confess that my most enjoyable moments from this one are lead singer @rt pipes down and lets the band jam out, as their buzzsaw guitars and tight rhythms move my mind with a bit more pure color. Does this make Disaster Amnesiac some kind of revanchist running dog? Oh, my.
Sliang Laos-Alabama Ego b/w Shining Path; Tenderizer Records, 1993
Moving closer to the Atlantic and stopping in Richmond, VA, Disaster Amnesaic's Art Capital of the American South, Sliang Laos gets down with a kind of Metal/Industrial grinding pound on these two tracks. This band possessed some seriously mighty swing: the drums, guitars and bass locking into these sharp, tight grooves that set up what strikes Disaster Amnesiac as much for pscyo-sexual lyric concerns. Alabama Ego even sports some broken atonal horn warbling a la Cosey Fanni Tutti, a really cool nod to the early Death Factory aesthetic that I imagine was an influence to someone within this collective. My old pal Erik, a long-time Richmond resident had boots on the ground as Sliang Laos did their thing in real time, and he once mentioned that Alternative Tentacles had expressed interest in releasing some more of their stuff. Whenever I play this 7", I lament that lost opportunity. Sliang Laos's mutated Grind Metal should have been much more effectively documented. Seek and find this gem, just don't ask me for my copy. Thanks, Grotz.
Carrion-Begger b/w Witness Your Birth; McCarthyism Records, 2002
Get in a car and drive north on I-95 from Richmond, and you'll find yourself in what Disaster Amnesiac used to know as NOVA. Carrion's 2002 offering seems to have been developed there. More swingin' guitar drive here, with some nicely angular passages that add some Math to Doom, along with dramatic quieter parts from which they blast forth with more changes. Disaster Amnesiac can't find a personnel listing here, but the guitar player does step out with some decent soloing at times before hooking back up with the drummer and bass player for that sharp ensemble interaction. Great, unaffected Hardcore Punk-style vocalizing, reminiscent of Barry Henssler's growl, too. Carrion documented some smart, sharp Heavy Rock on this 7". I wonder if they shared bills with Mastadon when that group was just getting started?
The Hidden Hand-De-Sensitized; McCarthyism Records (no date listed)
Anyone that has paid even a glance towards Heavy Rock post 1990 or so will have to have become familiar with Wino. If Maryland is the Doom Capital of the United States, then surely Wino is its crown prince. So many bands have used his ideas to fuel their own great sounds. Naturally, it's best to go to the source, and these two short blasts of Weinrich spiel damn well provide. As far as I had come to understand them, The Hidden Hand were Wino's post-Spirit Caravan group, put together with guys from a more Punk Rock background, and he was really happy with it. They played in S.F. in 2005 or so, but Disaster Amnesiac had to work the next day, so was unable to attend (note to self: FU). De-Sensitized features plenty of his wild Psych Rock soloing that springs forth from the SINGULAR Doom riffs that Wino comes up with so amazingly effortlessly, all of which surround his musings on personal strength and clarity in the face of so much societal obfuscation. Dave Hennesy on drums and Bruce Falkinburg prove themselves up to the task of pushing Wino's sound visions; they're fluid and tight, rocking out on the title track and the un-named instrumental b-side. Said b-side delights the listener with even more Wino wilding as his fingers blaze forth yet another excellent six string solo statement. Seriously, if you've never had the pleasure of hearing Scott Weinrich play live, do it.
Disaster Amnesiac has been hearing a lot of buzz about Record Store Day lately. I doubt that any of these East Coast waxings will get the coveted reissue treatment that is afforded to others for that Spring Time "event", but I also figure that most of these could be found on eBay or Amazon for a reasonable price. Surely any of these would appeal to most Heavy Rock/Punk/Metal/Doom fans.