Filed under: British
WARTORN - “Banzai” EP 1994 (Crust Records)
Of the few releases that actually passed muster from the UK HC scene of the early 90’s, this one seemingly slipped under the radar, despite the fact the band were at that point the fastest and wildest the UK had to offer, challenging and surpassing their mates in VOORHEES for the crown of HC speed freaks! Both bands actually sharing the stage a number of times.
Formed by some noted European luminaries, such as Lentil of Dutch bands DISTRESS and BOYCOTT, Rich of UK bands SORE THROAT and WARFEAR, James of HARD TO SWALLOW and now GERIATRIC WARD, WARTORN existed purely to play as hard and aggressive as they could in as short a time as possible. It’s pretty obvious that their inspirations were Japans GAUZE, along with MADBALL and INFEST from the USA (In fact track 10 is a MADBALL cover from their first 7”) – but for me WARTORN were a lot heavier than your average UK band - I mean jaw droppingly heavy. They never described themselves as “Power violence” or “Grindcore” or whatever the buzzwords were back then, just plain and simple HC punk played at extreme velocity!!
I really like this 7”, its sentiments are honest, its politics pull no punches (Both Anti Nazi and Anti Communist, anti capitalist and anti fucking everything you have to offer!!) and its music is simply superb. Lentil’s drumming is superhuman, seemingly nuclear powered particuarly on “Cause & Effect”, while Rich and James handle the hyperspeed riffs on guitar and bass respectively, all topped off with the gravel throated voice of singer Ian The Merciless. Pretty damn near perfect. It’s interesting to note, that a year after the band split up there were quite a number of bands playing in this vein in the UK rather than the same old tired UK anarcho crust punk style - perhaps they helped kick the scene up the arse despite alienating the “crusties” and “straight edgers” alike for neither conforming musically or lyrically. Released on the US label Crust Records by the bloke of DROP DEAD in 1994 (But actual recorded in early 1993) it’s still an easy find for all the vinyl maniacs, so happy hunting….The cover I believe is a bastardisation of Japanese comp “GREAT PUNK HITS” in tribute to their fascination with Japanese punk god SKV.
Pledge Of Non Allegiance/Relapse To Radicalism
Meltdown & Out
How To Destroy Angels
The Ivory Tower
Last Among Equals
Cause & Effect
Posted by: Discontrol