Punk, Metal, Hardcore music reviews and all-around nerd podcast
Top Six 7 inches of 2013
2013 was a pretty damn amazing year for punk, metal, and hardcore. Lots of new, impressive bands came seemingly out of nowhere, veteran bands kept pumping out great music, and long-since-dead acts shook off any doubts about their abilities to still make compelling music and produced some great new tracks.
So here it is, the best of the short: The top six 7 inches of 2013. In our opinion. Which ain’t worth much.
6. Paint it Black – Invisible EP
Paint it Black’s first two releases remain two of my favourite hardcore records of all time. While their subsequent releases have been excellent, this EP really feels like a return to form for them. “Greetings, Fellow Insomniacs” and “Little Fists” are fun, hard-hitting, and proof that this band is so widely revered for a reason.
5. Fuck the Facts – Amer
Now that we have finished up with our first two selections, it’s time to let the Ontario-love begin. I’m sure the rest of this list is coming from a fairly biased place, but I don’t really care…Ontario bands have put out a lot of the best music this year. I don’t know what it is about this province, but these Northerners know how to write a riff. Case in point: Fuck the Facts. Long-time favourites of Lost Tribe, FTF returned in 2013 with some of their most crushing and accessible-in-a-good-way music. Sure this is technically a 10” record and not a 7”, but that format doesn’t get its own category so here it is. There isn’t a bad song on this album, and even though it may not be sung in a language you know you’ll still love every second.
4. No Warning – Resurrection of the Wolf
As we enter into the long-gone bands putting out new music section of the list, No Warning has put out one of the best hardcore songs of the year….and they aren’t even a band anymore! The band members, led by Fucked Up’s Ben Cook, decided to put out a 7” record to help support bassist Zack Amster, who has been dealing with some legal problems down in California. So the band technically didn’t reform, in the sense that there doesn’t seem to be any desire to play actual shows, but they did release the title track, which is just as good as anything off of the coveted Ill Blood record, and proves that the ability to write an impeccable hardcore song doesn’t always fade with age. The b-side, “Bloodsucker”, a Violent Minds cover, also leaves the listener wanting more.
3. Left for Dead – 1
Most bands hope to put out something this good at the high point of their career. Meanwhile, Left for Dead is able to put out 8 of the most crushing songs of 2013 after being defunct for the better part of a decade. Unlike many reunited bands, Left for Dead felt that if they were going to get back together to play some shows, they had better prove that they were still able to churn out top-notch music. Otherwise, they’d just be another sad cliché. Luckily for fans of good music, they did put out this 7”, which features 1 re-recorded song, 1 cover, and 6 originals. There honestly isn’t a low point on this album, but “Digital Pigs”, “Devil’s Punchbowl”, and “1946” are particular stand-out tracks. And the best part is, this is only the first in a series of four 7”’s worth of new material.
2. Various Artists – Defend Hamilton
This comp gets put so high on the list for a couple reasons. First, it has music from multiple bands on this list, and secondly it helps to showcase what might be one of the most formitable music scenes in hardcore. Hamilton, Ontario not only boasts alumni like Left for Dead, but also has outstanding newer bands like At What Cost and Born Wrong. Furthermore, this comp even has an unreleased song from Pick Your Side, who would’ve made this list if there was a category for best-single-side-of-a-split-10-inch-record for their most recent split with To The Point.
1. Born Wrong – Holding Cell
More than anything I get excited by new bands creating new and compelling music. Born Wrong, from the aforementioned Hamilton, Ontario, has taken their own form of trashy, punk-inspired hardcore and honed it to perfection on their latest EP. Holding Cell seems to get better with each listening, and “True Patriot Love” has my vote for best hardcore song of the year. If you want to hear us gush about this release some more, check out the formal review. Once you do that, do yourself a favour and get this release as soon as possible. You’re wasting your time otherwise.