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C.H.E.W.: Demo 7"

C.H.E.W.: Demo 7"


Tags: · 10s · chicago · hardcore · spo-default · spo-disabled
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Frankly-speaking, it was really only a matter of time before this band’s demo was given the wax treatment. C.H.E.W. (formally known as Chew, and before you ask, no, the acronym doesn’t stand for anything) has quickly proven themselves to be one of Chicago’s crowning hardcore acts, even when this seven-track demo – originally released in March of 2016 – is the sole exposition of this group’s distinctive, menacing grooves; and that’s just tragic. In a subgenre so easily inundated with rehashed, recycled, ultimately repetitious riffs and breakdowns, bands like C.H.E.W. help breathe new life into a subcategory otherwise left to be scoffed at, be it through genuinely brilliant, genre-bending songwriting, or compacting every ounce of the members’ passion into a discordant, unconventional hardcore performance that’s nothing short of stunning, banshee-like vocals, searing riffs, abusive drumbeats and all. C.H.E.W. truly is a band you have to listen to believe, a near hallmark of today’s take on the genre – one of those seems to pop up every other week, but the praise doesn’t seem any more warranted than it does for these freaks.

Our take: Demo-on-vinyl from this KILLER Chicago band. Here’s what we had to say about the tape version, and it still very much applies: “Demo cassette from this new Chicago band, and it's definitely one of the standout demos we've received this month, if not the best one hands-down. Unlike a lot of the more visible bands coming out of the midwest lately, Chew aren't overtly poppy. They're very much hardcore, but they're hardcore that is almost impossibly catchy. Even though it doesn't really sound like them all that much, I'm reminded a lot of Rudimentary Peni's first two 7"s and LP... like those records (which are among my favorites of all time), Chew have this way of crafting riffs that are deceptively simple and elegant, and are heavy and mean while at the same time being so catchy that they stick to your ribs way harder than a zillion bands who actually try to write pop songs. If you're into the rash of great bands coming out of Philadelphia lately (Blank Spell, Enamel, et al), this is a must-hear as it has a similar vibe and is just as great as those bands... but really this band is a lot better than your typical genre exercise and I really hope I hear more from them sooner rather than later.”