Review Summary: When the line between messy and sloppy is crossed.
I’ll be honest with you, listening to hardcore for an extended amount of time has left my ears pretty battered. This makes most bands sound not nearly as bad as they probably are; hell, I practically hand out praise to most new hardcore acts coming out in the scene. Ironically, hardcore has the softest core when compared to most other genres. It was basically founded under the principles of anti-disestablishment, against the trend of quote-unquote ‘mainstream’ music, and the DIY ethic. This makes hardcore one of the easiest ways for bands to quickly gain recognition and fandom for the least amount of musicianship possible, quite an odd anomaly if you ask me. Shi
t, even Black Flag was considered a piece of trash band, yet here they are, decades later, considered one of the seminal bands of the entire genre. So no, there is barely any requirement that needs to be met to make an impressive hardcore album, let alone an album that’s on par with the standard of the hardcore banner.
Yet there comes a point when you have to say ‘enough is enough’, no more leniency and draw the line. There’s a point where the messy attributes that make hardcore such a gem of a genre gets crossed into the realms of just plain sloppy. Enter hardcore band, White Guilt
. Don’t judge a book by its cover, you say, as from the outside White Guilt looks about as imposing as any other cookie-cutter, quasi-90s youth crew-revival band out in today’s scene. The ominous album cover of a basic representation of White America families, followed by a band name that is sure to stir controversy wherever venue White Guilt
might find themselves in. But White Guilt
has finally found the boundary of messy and has entered the ugly realm of sloppy in their debut self-titled album. Followed by an immediate flood of static and a barely indecipherable bass line on opening track, ‘Race and Nation”, White Guilt
’s one factor that they attempted to harness in their debut becomes their sole downfall, the sloppiness. The whole entire album screams with a neverending feedback that takes more than just an idiot to know that is extremely overdone, annoying and infuriating all the same time. The ‘riffs’ on this album are bled out into ‘buzzes’, that is how bad the production is on this album. Whether or not White Guilt
has attempted to go for a ‘less is more’ approach is beyond me, but they clearly need to invest quite a bit more in the future and even then I’d still be hard-pressed to actually give this band another listen.
No, White Guilt
, you are not obscure and you are not the torch bearer to DYI punk. Even Amebix and Hotbild would be ashamed of your lack of any substance or care put into this album. Ladies and gentlemen, if I had to pick one factor that might be able to pull White Guilt
out of the dark it would be the sole ‘idea’, if you want to call it that, of their band name. Clearly, White Guilt
is going for come controversial, Minor Threat-style, reverse racism card, yet in no way is it realized on their self-titled debut. Even if that lone attribute is brought to fruition in the future it most likely won’t be enough to pull White Guilt out of the dirt that they have buried themselves under. Congratulations, what we have here a perfect example of when the line between messy and sloppy is finally crossed, with disastrous ramifications.