SSR Picks: Usman - February 17 2022

Hello, and thank you for reading. Today I will be talking briefly about my favorite, Suomi hardcore. I was pleased we got some of the SEKAANNUS 12”s in stock. The Finnish Hardcore label is an excellent label that has me eternally excited for what they have up their sleeve. While the original ‘Kutsu’ 7" from 1985 does not sell for exorbitant prices like some other Finnish slabs from the same era, it doesn’t make this reissue any less important to me. This EP was originally released as a single-sided, three track 7". The session was recorded at Laser Studio, where some of the greatest Finnish bands like MELLAKKA, DESTRUCKTIONS, POHJASAKKA, KAAOS, and APPENDIX recorded between 1983 and 1985. This 12" reissue features an additional three songs(!!!) from the same session that were not originally released on the 7". These tracks have remained totally unreleased prior to this 12". I was wondering why they weren’t released on the original record. They aren’t played poorly, which often times would be the deciding factor for a song not making the cut. Haha, well kind of... Many of these classic records are from sessions where each song was recorded in only one take, but that was usually due to lack of money for a “real-deal” recording session. Anyway, I learned from the label that the band only released a single-sided 7" cos a double-sided one was too expensive, so that mystery is solved. The Finnish Hardcore reissue comes with a booklet that’s got great information on the band’s history and the recording session where ‘Kutsu’ was recorded. And of course, it includes all the original artwork plus bonus material such as their appearances in a few zines. In true Finnish Hardcore fashion, this reissue was clearly made with a tremendous amount of love, care, and attention to detail. This is another top-notch archival release that deserves a place in every record collection, really.

I first heard SEKAANNUS on their split with MASSACRE. While both bands played faster (and sloppier) hardcore on this release, the SEKAANNUS sound changes quite a bit in the next year leading up to ‘Kutsu.’ In the booklet, they talk about the sound and how the band was leaning more towards FLUX OF PINK INDIANS than DISCHARGE at this point. While I enjoy the early stuff, the ‘Kutsu’ tracks are very cool, especially in that they stand out from other Finnish bands during that time. Regardless of this evolution, one of the unreleased tracks on the B-side is still a raging D-beat track. It’s sick to hear them play locked-in like that cos they sounded pretty sloppy early on while they were trying to sound like DISCHARGE, haha.

Alright next, have you seen the “new” KAAOS 7" on Fight Records? I have and I want one bad... but I don’t have one, yet. We tried to get copies but the initial run sold out pretty quickly. No surprise there. However, we have a nice stack of copies of the repress secured for us!!! Not sure when they will ship, but if you still need a copy, don’t worry; we got you covered. I don’t know much about this 7" but I know it’s an unreleased session from 1982. There are two songs from this session that have appeared on their split with CADGERS and on the “Systeemi Ei Toimi E.P.” compilation. But those tracks were recorded at a different studio, so these are different versions which I think were recorded later. I’m pretty sure one song has never been released at all, but I could be wrong. The Fight Records page says the other track was never released as a KAAOS song but given to BASTARDS and they released their own version, which is pretty sick. They also say it’s actually the guitarist of BASTARDS playing on this entire session. Anyway, I can’t wait to get our copies, nerd out, and blast these unreleased tracks of raw Finnish hardcore. Keep your eyes and ears open for updates.

Still in the world of FInnish hardcore, have you seen the VARAUS ‘Tuomittu Elämään E.P.’ reissue?!! So fucking cool. Feral Ward did that 1/1 LP (which was essentially the same tracks as the 1996 ‘Requiem’ CD reissue) but it’s cool Lärmattacke Records is doing just the EP like the OG, especially now cos the Feral Ward reissue is difficult to come by. When I first saw this EP reissue, I lost my mind cos I didn’t hear about it at all until I saw it for sale on their site. And then I lost my mind again in confusion why it said there was only 150 pressed on black vinyl, alongside some “limited” color variants... I went to check out and they wouldn’t ship to USA, again losing my mind haha... Luckily I secured copies for me and some friends. However in the end it won’t even matter, hehe. Of course SSR inquired about distro copies even though there was a small quantity made. I learned that the plant had “lost” a portion of the records and was in the process of pressing the compensating copies, so at that time there were no copies available for wholesale. Luckily we asked at a good time cos we have a very nice stack secured for us. If there are no delays, expect to see us with those two monstrous distro stockpiles in the beginning of April. Alright, that’s it for this week. Thanks for reading, and thanks so much for the support.

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