Still Ill, that amazing and courageous independent record label based in Manila, in conjunction with US-based Violent Delights, released two items over the weekend.
The first is the seven-inch vinyl extended play record of youth crew, Clean Slate, titled “Young World,” and a demo cassette of doom hardcore crew, Veils.
“Young World” is proof that what Russian-American author Ayn Rand wrote in “The Fountainhead” almost a century ago in 1934 — a call for individuality over collectivism — remains valid and vital today as it did yesterday.
“Young World” drips with references. The leadoff track, “Keating,” a reference to “The Fountainhead’s” Peter Keating character who subscribes to conforming but struggles to find expression in the wake of living inside the box, minces no words: “Dirty and sly. Need to comply. Every ‘yes’ you die. Kiss your dignity goodbye.”
The title track is the penultimate track of this eight-song EP and is aptly placed as a reminder to seize the day.
Given all the rapid changes in our world today with overpopulation, food and water shortages, and giant corporations dictating how we live and act, it is no surprise that Clean Slate asks in the song, E.C. or “Existential Crisis” about their place in the world.
It is a dangerous world out there with voices being silenced and Clean Slate will not go gently into the night. And much like youth crew progenitors, American bands Youth of Today and Gorilla Biscuits, Clean Slate is high on optimism but doesn’t spare on the aggro of their guitar assault.
“Young World” is about 16 minutes of brutal truths. Hopefully, the clarion call is heard and heeded.
The second release features Veils. With the follow-up to their 2017 debut on seven-inch vinyl, coming soon, this cassette demo tape will whet the appetites of those who enjoyed their brand of punishing dark and metallic hardcore.
The demo contains three new songs: “Haul”, “Embrace”, and “Swarm”.
“Embrace” has an ominous start before the blitzkrieg starts. There’s a haunting bit to the song à la Coal Chamber with its freaky guitars.
“Swarm” starts off dirge-like then those tortured guitars (such as when Eric Draven was playing his guitar atop a building in the film The Crow) scratch their way in. Then the mayhem hits.
Now the follow-up to the awesome “Paradiso” and company from Veils’ powerful self-titled debut EP.