Thursday, October 7, 2010

On powerviolence, and how violence IS the answer.

So someone suggested I explain what powerviolence is as it was mentioned in an earlier posting to which I'm sure many of you thought "wtf iz tha powrvilens?", well here it is.

Powerviolence is a subgenre of hardcore punk, its close cousins are fastcore, hardcore/thrash and grindcore. Powerviolence is characterized by breakdowns and fast parts.. So are other forms of hardcore punk but powerviolence just does it in a very "powerviolencey" way. One of the best, if not the best, powerviolence bands ever is Spazz. They took elements of earlier proto-powerviolence bands and combined them with the best of fastcore and punk at the time. Here is one of my favorite songs by Spazz, which definitely captures the best elements of powerviolence. Without further ado here is Spazz - LETS FUCKING GO;

Now, as a new powerviolence fan, you might be wondering, what the heck is grindcore and hardcore punk and how is it different from powerviolence? Well Punky, I'll show you. Grindcore is similar to powerviolence but also incorporates elements of death metal and has a much "grindcoreier" sound than powerviolence.  Here is Insect Warfare - NECESSARY DEATH;

See Champ? Much faster and blastier than powerviolence but with that same "oh, ok this isn't death metal so its ok to mosh and break shit" mentality about it. Speaking of moshing I will now recount the events of the one and only powerviolence show I ever produced. It was for my 16th birthday party, I a young headstrong punk rocker, my locale an innocent and naive town completely unprepared for the carnal assfucking that a powerviolence show can wreak on its victims. I had invited a few local bands and some from the Bay area to play the show. I got a really fucking sweet venue at a dance studio for $200, I told them we would be playing "heavy rock music" and that it was to be a private music event so no cover at the door = no required permits. When my band arrived there was already a crowd of forty or so gathered around the entrance, smoking cigarettes and generally being hipster douches. We opened the doors after setting up the first band and let everyone in. Things were going great until the band Skull Collector went on. Skull Collector plays a very heavy and dark sound, the crowd went nucking futts. The entire time Skull Collector was playing I thought to myself "Damn that blonde is standing real close to the pit..". I look at the pit then back at the girl and see a kid get very close to her.. His fist swings back and hits her in the face, her head swings back and breaks the mirror on the wall of the dance hall, she falls to the ground and starts hemorrhaging out of her face. This was the first time I had seen someone bleed out their face, you see when I say face I do not mean she had a cut on her face I mean her eyes, mouth, nostrils and I'm pretty sure ears were all gushing blood. Cue total chaos. The owner who was looking fearfully at the crowd the entire time has a panic attack, all I hear from him is "THIS ISNT WHAT WE AGREED UPON I CANT TAKE THIS, I CANT FUCKING TAKE THIS!". My friend Kenyon picks the girl up and takes her outside as it was very hot in the place. A few minutes later the ambulance picks her up along with the fire department. The bands from the Bay didn't end up getting to play because the show was shut down after that. Night ended up being a total bust.

I fucking hate the kid who fucked that venue up. If the first show had gone smoothly the local music scene could have had a regular venue to cheaply book shows. But no, some fucking douche bag hipster faggot had to ruin shit. Now there is no place to play around here and all the good bands either broke up or moved away. Sad time for music in Grover Beach California.

So there you have it, a powerviolence veteran and one sad music scene.


  1. Wow this is a pretty great genre if you ask me. I love going to local punk shows. My old highschool is where punk was born in Cali. Good post man

  2. you've got an interesting point here, good job with the post

  3. The thing about powerviolence and grind and similar genres is that they don't take themselves nearly as seriously as some people think they do. They aren't songs to live your life by the lyrical content of, they're songs to rock out to.

  4. Around where I live there are a lot of underground punk and metal bands that perform concerts who don't want to be famous but just cater to the people who are aware and it would be great if more people started playing this genre it sounds pretty brutal and would fit right in.

  5. Insect Warfare are fucking awesome. That is all.

  6. I love your original point of view, too bad I am not into punk as much as I used to be.

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