Muerte: S/T 12"

Cintas Pepe Records


The awaited and hotly anticipated vinyl debut of Muerte, yet another flawless execution of "hardcore punk" from the Mexico City crew that brought you Tercer Mundo, Inservibles, Era del Vacio, Cintas Pepe Records, etc. While the 2013 demo tape hinted at a more expanded vision and wider array of influences than their other bands, having a more goth-y anarcho-y undertone, its execution wasn't quite perfected. Their 2014 gigs with Sete Star Sept, Tercer Mundo, Lotus Fucker, and Globsters (now THAT was a tour!!!) left a big impression on us, with a tighter and more cohesive sound and style, and a powerful live show. And their appearance at Not Dead Yet fest in Toronto, with new songs and an undeniable urgency, cemented them as, well, I dunno, basically the best newer hardcore band in the world, in my opinion.

Our take: Despite the fact that I have loved pretty much every single release on the Cintas Pepe label, my recent spell of death rock fatigue had my expectations pretty low for this one. Well, that was stupid of me. I should have known that this crew wasn't going to crap out some boring, hookless, chorus-addled excuse for a post-punk record. One of the things that I love about the explosion of killer Mexican punk and hardcore that's popped up over the past few years is the sense of fearlessness in their music... whether it was Dave Rata's fusion of garage-punk and raw hardcore on the Ratas del Vaticano records and his solo stuff or Inservibles' uncanny ability to make unfashionable moves like blast-beats seem utterly vital, the key players from this scene seem to imbue everything they do with a sense of passion and relevance that virtually no first-world band can hope to match. Even if that tell-tale vitality weren't here, this debut LP from Muerte is still a stunning record. Taking elements from raw hardcore, post-punk/death rock, psychedelic rock, and even black metal, every song here seems to be a world unto itself, yet the whole record still feels coherent. I can't think of another band that can sound like Darkthrone one moment, Bauhaus the next, and then Hawkwind the moment after that and still have it gel together into a record that you actually want to listen to, but I've been flipping this one over and over pretty much constantly since it came in. Throw in that trademark, gorgeous hand-made packaging that is a Cintas Pepe trademark and you have yet another essential release from one of the most important labels in punk today.
Tags: 10s hardcore mexico post-punk punk raw recommended