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Record of the Week: Zorn: Hardcore Zorn cassette + Staff Picks

Zorn: Hardcore Zorn cassette (self-released) Latest 4-song recording from this metal-punk band out of Philly. It’s always been tempting to dismiss Zorn as Devil Master Jr since they’re from the same city and have a similar sound and image (and Devil Master’s bassist Cassidy even provides the artwork for Hardcore Zorn), but I don’t think Zorn is redundant by any means. That’s particularly true of Hardcore Zorn, which I haven’t been able to stop playing since it hit the internet. While I’ve seen Zorn referred to as blackened punk or hardcore, the ornate song structures and complicated riffing on Hardcore Zorn remind me more of dark, technical thrash like Forbidden or Testament, albeit with a hardcore/punk energy and vocal delivery and a dash of gothic catchiness thrown in to sweeten the pot. I’m hesitant to pull this apart too much because everything fits together so seamlessly and perfectly. If you’re a fan of the early Devil Master stuff this is a no-brainer, but I encourage anyone with an interest in both metal and punk to check this out. It’s infectious.

Staff Picks: Daniel

Graeme Miller & Steve Shill: The Moomins 12” (Finders Keepers)

As promised, here’s another foray into the weird for my staff pick. When I’m winding down late at night, I like to dim the lights in my living room, turn the stereo up loud, and let the music take me where it will. Sure, I love going into the depths of rage with some crazy hardcore and I’m as down for a lengthy psychedelic journey as anyone, but sometimes I also like to mix up the vibe. Lately, this soundtrack has been my go-to when I want to hear something different.

The Moomins started its life as a Finnish folk tale, which a Polish company adapted into a stop-motion animation series for release in the German and Austrian market. In 1982, the BBC licensed the animation and commissioned new voice-overs and musical accompaniment, the latter of which is collected here. The animation is trippy, weird, and very homespun, and the music on this LP matches that aesthetic with its primitive, home-recorded rawness bringing out what the label’s description calls “dream-like illusory fuzziness and freakiness.” The episodes vary quite a lot in tone, and I love how each musical piece here articulates a different feeling or emotion. 

While The Moomins doesn’t have the high art feel of something like the Planete Sauvage soundtrack, it has a similar vintage trippiness and childlike charm.

Staff Picks: Eric

Leather Lickers: Eye Of The Scared 7" - Totally ripping hardcore punk from Melbourne, Australia. FFO: Poison Idea, The Fix, Negative Approach, etc. A very well executed display of what makes hardcore so great. It's fast, ferocious, and sounds effortless. Highly recommended!

In others news: My band Public Acid is playing some shows with the mighty LOOSE NUKES this week and I'm very excited. Come out to a gig and say wassup.

11/20 RVA @ Mojos
11/21 Raleigh @ Trump Tower
11/22 DC @ Hole In The Sky
11/23 Baltimore @ Asian Taste
11/24 York, PA @ Skid Row

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