Review Summary: Deconstruction of the mind, deconstruction of the body.
Hatred Surge are an unbelievably talented powerviolence group that formed as a side project of Insect Warfare bassist Alex Hughes in Austin, Texas. Retaining a significant cult following in the underground hardcore scene, Hughes and the rest of Hatred Surge manage to sculpt an awe-inspiring duality of noisy punk and hardcore with splashes of death metal and grindcore sprinkled throughout their songs. The result of this combo of styles, on their debut full length anyway, is as disgustingly frantic as it is brilliantly crafted and is tense as it is inexplicably charming.
Too many run of the mill grind bands garner respect for, and are always described as ‘pissed off’ or ‘raw and fast’, and this somehow makes that band in question ‘one of the best’. The unfortunate reality is that most of those bands possess no real character in their music; nothing that sets them apart from the rest. Just noise, loud guitars and gurgled vox. Deconstruct disregards that norm by taking the roots of what makes hardcore music so great while furiously twisting and turning its many clichés inside out to create a vastly more unexpected experience than one would assume to get when sitting down with a modern hardcore punk record. Sure, Deconstruct IS filthy and brutal (“Big Smile”), pissed off beyond belief (“Deconstruct Pt. 2”), raw (“Outsider”), and heart crushingly fast (“Malajusted”). But so is every decent album in this genre. Deconstruct does more than just flaunt those characteristics. It bends them, rapes them, and morphs them into a new beast you’ve probably never heard before.
Noisy female shouts, vile death grunts and jarring punk shrieks constantly play the question and answer game over mountainous layers of screeching amplifiers, thrash/grind riffs and sludgy reverb throughout the less than twenty minute runtime. The amalgamation of dirty punk and grindcore never wears out its welcome at any point, and neither do the multitude of different vocal styles getting slammed up against your ears. The female/male call response intro of “Feeding” is infectious and surprisingly melodic; incomprehensibly epic roars invade your speakers alongside a nasty punk progression and don’t ease off until the start/stop transition into “Big Smile”. This track transforms the almost punk like feel of the few previous tracks into a psychotic grindcore fest. Hardcore riffs and punkish vocal calls get warped into death metal chord progressions and lowly barked grunts. What’s so impressive and key about these two tracks is how it sums up what this album does on the whole. It contrasts grindcore/death metal with abrasive punk and hardcore while somehow seamlessly combining it sometimes within the same thirty second track. “Draw the Curtains” opens up with an almost 90s OSDM sounding bass riff assault, and then develops into a groovy hardcore punk song. It’s strange, uninviting, effortlessly done, and absolutely marvelous for any heavy music fan. Hatred Surge reinvents the wheel more and more as the album progresses; muddy yet memorable grindcore sonnets lie next to, before, and sometimes right in the middle of noisy punk tracks. Hatred Surge are brilliant songwriters, but still somehow retain that sense of endless messiness from beginning to end of their debut album.
The production job on Deconstruct also helps it stick out like a sore thumb amongst a sea of generic grindcore albums. Most grind and hardcore records nowadays either sound oober kvlt (Insect Warfare-ish) or wide open and separated. Deconstruct plays the best of both worlds card in terms of its atmosphere and sound. It’s outrageously loud but never monotonous (“Skull Cell”) and is riddled with thick amplifier cracks (“Weightless”). Brutally slow tracks exist as well but never sound like the one that came before it. “Weightless” comes right after the half spoken word half frenzied punk album opener “Deconstruct Pt. 1” and pummels the sound barrier with a sludgy, almost stoner metal muted palm chug on what is most likely a down tuned 7 string guitar. The combo of powerviolence shorts “Malajusted” and “Deconstruct Pt. 2” make for less than one minute of uniquely composed grindcore anthems which fly at you but are catchy enough to remain with you. “I Hate” is brutal. “Feeding” is catchy and fun. “Infinity” has a Kerry King-esque solo at the end. “Dark Circles” has a contagious opening punk riff. “Sleep Terrorizer” flips back and forth between walls of noise and trash riffs. The female vox on “Lethal Pedigree” are undeniably epic. Every track has something that the previous one didn’t. Deconstruct never settles into a calculated pace. It never repeats itself without adding something new.
Alex Hughes and Hatred Surge have created a highly inventive powerviolence album in a time where most of these bands can’t even write one track that doesn’t sound like every other song in the genre. Deconstruct opens with the lines “Deconstruction of the mind, deconstruction of the body”. And that’s exactly what it does. It’s experimental, fresh and has more balls than any grind album you’ve heard all day.
powerviolence and grind are not the same thing you call this album a grind album 50 times please stop there is no death metal there is no grind on it you recommended circle takes the square why did you do that
i recommend ctts purely based on the prevalence of the question and answer male/female vox. they aren't similar at all besides that. also thats a pretty popular record on here so maybe people would check this out based on that recommendation
ugh putting way too much emphasis on things that arent even prevalent still looks like you havent heard any pv besides this album and a few iron lung tracks especially when making generalizations like "this album is good because it does what no other pv album can - makes each song sound different"
not a generalization at all, i've heard a pretty large handful of modern pv/hxc type records, plus a
ton of 90s hxc punk stuff as well
i put on emphasis on the unique parts of this album that I think stand out, whereas a lot of modern
records that fall into the hardcore, grindcore and powerviolence categories seem mostly style over
substance (though I didn't say thats every album in either of these genres, at all, but many that
this album is fantastic for many reasons other than the fact that it's more varied in songwriting
approach than most albums in and around this style
if you'd like to recommend me any pv albums you think I need to hear in order to make comments like
that however be my guest, truth be told many that I've heard recently are simply too run of the mill
and unmemorable for me to enjoy for the most part
"ugh putting way too much emphasis on things that arent even prevalent still looks like you havent heard any pv besides this album and a few iron lung tracks especially when making generalizations like "this album is good because it does what no other pv album can -makes each song sound different"'
Give it up, bro. He's heard one powerviolence album, which means he knows what he's talking about.
i've heard many pv albums pit idrc if you disagree i know what ive heard lol
againt alach feel free to rec me anything you think im blind to/haven't heard
edit: i never claimed to be an expert on this style or any of it's neighboring styles, but regardless
ive still heard a pretty significant amount of albums in this genre and this one really stuck out for
me, don't know why that's like a criminal act
like hahah for example i wrote a review of this and you said I made the generalization that this is good BECAUSE the songs sound different, which was a fractional part of my argument of why I like it so much, and not even close to the only reason I hold this record in such high regard
when you spend an entire review talking about how grind an album is when its actually pv, youre wrong. blast beats fast parts and growls dont make something grind. you make the same mistake as 95% of people thinking that pv and grind are interchangeable which is definitely easy to make when you havent heard much from the genre
you recced four albums with only one of them (iron lung) being remotely similar to the sound here when the logical bands to rec would be other well known modern pv bands in the scene like mind eraser or soul swallower or even something like endless blockade. you claimed earlier youve heard plenty of modern pv, but refrain from citing them. instead you talk about insect warfare which can only be mentioned due to its relationship with the bassist and vocalist of HS (similarities end there) and babble about one song having huge dm influences (dumb)
good point, i probably did use the term grindcore loosely, however
there is more than one song on this record with absolutely death metal influences, whether you agree or disagree
i wouldn't recommend minder eraser OR soul swallower because I found both bands pretty eh when I heard them, id rather recommend better bands, despite them being more similar to hs than the other bands i've mentioned in the recs section. though the nails and ctts recs are misleading so okay I could see your point with that
the endless blockade or spazz should probably be recs instead I may change that
i mentioned insect warfare twice maybe, and tbh i understand their music doesn't really sound like this album but you can hear bits and pieces of it scattered throughout for sure, definitely not in the production though
again, like I keep saying feel free to recommend me anything in the genre so my knowledge can even reach a fraction of what yours seems to be on pv
you keep focusing on the fact that i put ctts in the rec section jesus lol broken record
i did however think somebody into the vocal style of atru would be able to get into something like this a bit more easily, though yes, in truth the two bands are nothing alike, ill probably change the rec section but I don't think that you understand that I know the two bands aren't really similar