When people find out I really like 80s US hardcore I’m often met with a similar face to the one I get when they find out I really like ice hockey. I suppose neither sit very well with my general demeanour. Regardless, I do, and on a recent forage, I came across an incredible blog/database of rare gems from the hardcore world.
Recently coming to end, The Last Days of Men on Earth was written by Joe Stumble, a man with an obvious heartfelt passion and near-encyclopaedic knowledge about what was a fairly short-lived but deeply entangled scene. Although not solely a blog about hardcore, my favourite segment comes in the form of 8 painstakingly-crafted podcasts made up of the lesser known acts of the golden era of the style. Many bands released very little, only appearing on compilations or bootlegged demo recordings. It’s these which Stumble carefully documents and many of the songs easily rival the better known classics from bands like Minor Threat, Bad Brains and Black Flag.
I think that’s one of the reasons I’m so fascinated by the scene. During the early 80s these bands never dreamed of becoming widely known or signed up by big labels. It wasn’t even a vague possibility. Most of the music was just a highly condensed personal expression aimed solely at their peers.
Incidentally I’d love to know exactly how many hardcore songs have Reagan puns in the title…
Find the podcasts here: Last Days of Men On Earth podcasts.