Am I the only one who is completely exhausted with the state of “heavy” releases? If it’s not some No Mercy/Cro-Mags wannabe shit then it’s a bunch of dudes who bought their first bullet belt 3 weeks ago with a Framtid shirt to match. Your personal identity crisis shouldn’t translate to more copycat music. You wanna be a grown adult with little spikes on your clothes that’s your fucking problem, but frankly, we don’t need anymore dorks re-recording Disclose worship. It’s been done and no one seems to have the heart to just admit that we are all tired of it.
The best and strongest releases that come out every year are rarely just worshiping one genre or style. Time and again, we see that the bands who mash every tempo and tone, ranging from d-beat to NYHC, standout and thrive. I will say that I understand if you just want to mimic a certain style and fuck around locally with your friends. It’s fun, however, when the time comes for your project to take the next steps, don’t be surprised if your only selling point turns out that you just sound like *insert band here.*
To bring this tangent full circle, let’s look at a band who definitely isn’t just one motherfucking genre. Friendship is rapidly becoming one of the heaviest and most entertaining bands in Japan. Their new album Undercurrent is an onslaught of sludged-out hardcore that has caught the attention of every major US and EU band touring Japan. There are no trends in these riffs, just pure fucking insanity.
With Undercurrent, Friendship combines elements of powerviolence, hardcore and sludge effortlessly to provide ample auditory displeasure for all who press play. Undercurrent is a record that is reminiscent of early Full Of Hell and Nails yet, has the capacity to win over the jaded dude in the back of the venue wearing a Crossed Out shirt. This record stands out not because Friendship is blasting into uncharted territory, but because they have taken familiar tempos and tones and found a way to make them fresh and punishing again. Undercurrent will be available via Southern Lord and you’d best tell your landlord to get fucked, you’ve got records to buy!