Where They From? Connecticut, nowhere specific in the nutmeg state, just Connecticut. I actually lived in Connecticut from the ages of four to eleven and, for the most part, I have to say Connecticut was really fucking boring, but there was one thing that did bring me a certain joy growing up: The Hartford Whalers. Connecticut’s only professional sports team was the old WHL team that joined the NHL in the ’80s along with the Edmonton Oilers and the Quebec Nordiques (RIP). God, I miss the Whalers, that fog horn that would play every time they scored, Ron Francis, Ulf Samuelsson, Gordie Howe, that other guy. Ugh, classic.
What do they sound like? The album is called Connecticut Powerviolence. Feel free to draw your own conclusions.
Why the hype? Powerviolence, you brought it up, let’s talk about it. I’ve been hesitant to cover PV bands in this feature due to a sort of negative connotation a lot of grind people have about this specific style, and I get it. At its heart, powerviolence is just grindcore with a greater punk influence and a certain freedom to augment the fast stuff with doomy/groovy stuff. The issue people have is a lot of bands really emphasize the breakdowns and treat the fast parts as rote and interchangeable. Also, a lot of these bands think HM-2s sound good (they do not).
But when PV is good, it’s pretty fucking enjoyable. The best Spazz albums are more chaotic and unpredictable than half of the grind bands that come from Scandanavia and most of the exemplary modern US grind bands take a whole heck of a lot of PV influence (Mellow Harsher, Durian, Ulf Samuelsson, that other guy). All I’m trying to say is, DON’T BE A SCENE BULLY!
Latest Release: Connecticut Powerviolence. This album is a good example of modern powerviolence, incorporating the various different elements of the microgenre into a product that’s honestly a better listen than most of the goregrind dreck I have to churn through in order to bring you this column every week. You get the blast beats, you get the breakdowns, you get the feedback (but no HM-2, thank the Lord). You even get an Infest cover and then guess what? ANOTHER INFEST COVER AFTER THAT! The whole album sort updates the old school sounds of bands like Dropdead with all the modern tricks of viciousness we’ve learned in the 20 years since then. Really, what’s not to love? I could very much imagine Ulf Samuelsson rocking out to this in the penalty box after getting his second fighting major of the game. (GOAL HOOOOOOORN).