Disfear Live the Storm

[Relapse; 2008]

Rating: 4/5

Styles: hardcore, death metal, rock ’n’ roll, D-beat
Others: Motörhead, Municipal Waste, Tragedy, Discharge, Negative Approach

A bizarre dream plagued my sleep last night, different from our waking world in a way that wasn't immediately tangible. I was walking into a record store, expecting to peruse display racks teeming with indie-pop and "look at what happens when I breathe into a mic with a delay pedal"-psychedelia. But something was different there. The records on the shelves were devoid of color, playful image patterning, and cursive fonts. Instead, black and white images of especially provocative police brutality, jagged metaloid band logos, and piles of dead bodies adorned the record covers. “Something's not quite right here,” I thought. As I peered over to the checkout desk, there was no sweater-clad, horn-rimmed-glasses-wearing indie-dork reading Foucault, but instead a crusty little rapscallion with a black hooded Crossed Out sweatshirt and reading Sartre. As I checked out my selections, the misanthropic young clerk barely took his eyes off the book.

After piling up on records, I headed over to CBGB, which, in the dream, hadn't been ripped out and shipped to Vegas as a fucking tourist trap. No, no -- in this world, the legendary punk club was still holding its Sunday matinées, and going to the toilet there was as treacherous a hover situation as ever. The smell of rancid pee and feces wasn't nauseating, but invigorating. A motley crew of musicians were setting up on stage, when, out of nowhere, Lemmy from Motörhead appeared and handed me a beer and a record called Live the Storm from a Swedish band called Disfear. He said they were a pummeling D-beat hardcore-punk-metal band in the lineage of Discharge and Negative Approach, but with the singer from At the Gates and guitarist Uffe Cederlund from Entombed. "Oh, also," he added, "it was all engineered by Converge guitarist Kurt Ballou." "Wow," I exclaimed, "that sounds great. As I turned to thank him, nothing was left but a puff of white smoke.

Upon waking up, I was damp with cold sweat. I rubbed my eyes vigorously and realized I was no longer dreaming. It was all my subconscious playing tricks on me, I thought, revealing to me the deepest desires of my psyche. You can imagine my surprise, then, when later, in real life, I found the Disfear record sitting on my desk. Could this be? Could Lemmy have been here? Was my dream real? Or was this a freak Jungian accident, a wormhole rift in consciousness through which this rune had transmigrated from the dream world into the material world? I decided to quit it with the deep metaphysical ruminations and put the fucker on. However this slab got here, I was glad it did.

Disfear is a composite of some of the deepest, most primal musical instincts of past musical worlds long forgotten and pushed aside in my memory banks in lieu of a burgeoning world of new-fangled musics. Their sound is quite similar to the pummeling Canadian hardcore of yore, à la His Hero is Gone, Tragedy, and Union of Uranus, with blistering Motörhead rock sensibilities and Chain of Strength-inspired gang vocals. For those of you who still like your rock to be without serifs and festoonery, Disfear will not disappoint. With no synths and no f/x, just crunching guitars, pounding drums, and shouted lyrics about how it sucks to be alive, Disfear’s music is capable of permanently affixing one’s balls to the wall.

Now, if only they were real.

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