Ho99o9: United States Of Horror.

6 05 2017

ho99o9

 

With a smack to the face and a kick in the shins, a bloody nose. Broken bones. Grazed knuckles. Aching joints. That’s what the debut record from Ho99o9 will bring you. Pain, anguish, destruction, pleasurable noise, decadence, truth, brutal and brave truth. A riot. They’re not just a Hip Hop group, but man, they have made the best Hip Hop record in a long time. As far as debut records go, this one is going to be ringing in your ears even when they release their fifth one. It’s got this level of greatness to it that comes from sheer determination, and boy- they have it!

When I first heard Ho99o9 in 2014/early 2015, I was instantly moved by their attitude and how they really had this strong Punk sound that we so desperately needed. Ho99o9 were and still a band that we urgently need. They speak to everyone irrespective of race, age, sexuality, background. None of it matters, it never should matter. Their songs are to be played as loud as possible, and for every word to be yelled and learnt. Keep up the pace.

At the moment, Street Power is my favourite song on the record but I’m fully expecting that to change. 17 songs in 46 minutes. 17 songs that will blow your mind, blow your eardrums and leave you wanting more. 17 songs that shape our frustrations at the world and the things we see. The things we can change, and the things that are out of our hands, for now. No band has been this brave in a long time. United State of Horror is a body of work that oozes blood, sweat and rage. It’s the perfect record to expand your thoughts to and see things for how they are.

For just two people to make this much noise and to have such an incredible force within their debut record is just amazing. They take the sounds of two genres and make something really out there and unlike anything else. Sure they’ve had the Death Grips, Bad Brains and Black Flag comparisons but there is something else within them that is totally unlike anything else. Songs like Splash and Knuckle Up really show this, and for me, I’m just really in awe of Eaddy and theOGM. Just two people with such truth and rawness to their sound. It’s like exposing a wound. People will turn away but are still intrigued at the gore and guts. There’s gore and a whole lot of guts in their songs. How can you not be moved even slightly by them?!

I spent most of yesterday listening to the record at work, and I just intensely focused on the lyrics. Today I’m trying to take in every detail within the music. The way they make you feel like an electric shock is flowing through you. This isn’t a band that should be labelled as “not suitable for…” forget that. They are a band for EVERYONE. They hold something so important within them, and it isn’t something that needs ignoring.

Again, they are one of those bands that you’ve got to see live. I’ve yet to, but how they are on record will easily be shown in a different light during their live shows. They just have something in their music that needs to be in a live setting. Venue size doesn’t matter, the more that hear them- the better. Songs like Sub-Zer0 and War Is Hell just need to be seen live, you get that immediately from them. I think I’ve move on to Sub-Zer0 being my favourite right now.

From their EPs to this debut full length record, in just a few years Ho99o9 have created their own movement on their own terms. The finest thing to have come from New Jersey via L.A in a long time. Well, ever really. United States of Horror is a record that deserves your complete and utter attention. It’s easily one of the best records of the year, and the rage within it will feed into your soul. It’ll find its way deep inside of you, and will never leave.

You know what to do- play loud. Learn the words, throw your body around to the songs, go to the shows and let Ho99o9 completely and utterly take you over.





EVOL.

24 03 2013

 

As a Music Writer (I hate the term “Music Critic” or “Music Journalist”) it is always really nice when a band reach out to you. It’s even better when they make music that you really really love.

I believe you shouldn’t use age or any of those factors when talking about musicians. It doesn’t take anything away from their music, but Evol are pretty young. But they are also pretty damn amazing.

The singer, Kevin emailed me maybe an hour or so ago. He’s from Burlington. It’s in New Jersey. You may or may not have heard of it. When a band on the other side of the world reach out to you, well, it’s a nice feeling. It’s nice knowing someone is paying attention to you. So you must return the favour. I had to return the favour, I couldn’t ignore such a band at all. The music Kevin and his friend Luke make is brilliant. Two people making a LOT of noise. You know how I love duos who make noise. The Kills started all that a long time ago for me. It is something that has stuck, and I’m glad it has. I can’t imagine not having that as one of my music based habits.

Evol make music that will gloriously melt your brain. They unleash a lot of fury, which is understandable. Kevin told me that where he lives, people are either into death metal or 2 Chainz. And I thought where I live was bad. We all face our own battles, right?! They are influenced by Sonic Youth. There aren’t many shit bands that are influenced by Sonic Youth. It is like Sonic Youth were put here to influence and bring out the best in budding musicians. I think, by judging Evol, they’ve filled their purpose and much more.

The thing that really sold me was that Kevin has only been playing guitar for just over a year. In such a short time he’s managed to create his own noise that you cannot help but want more and more from. There’s also one other thing that really touched me. Kevin is influenced by Punk Rock. The good stuff. The genre that taught a generation to speak up and take no shit from anybody. The genre that spoke to so many; and still does. It is not dead, a lot of band still carry that Punk Rock ethic with them. You don’t have to be in a band to do that, you can apply it to everyday life; to just keep on going. But, Kevin said something that I thought was truly beautiful about Punk Rock, and also makes me believe (and hope) that Evol go far with their music. He said this: “Punk Rock taught me that I don’t have to live up to African-American stereotypes.” It is sad that we live in a world where we have to live up to what is expected, but you know what? Thank goodness for Punk Rock to save our souls and teach us important lessons such as not giving in to those stereotypes.

You can listen to Kevin and Luke’s music here: https://soundcloud.com/#covert-bummer You should play it pretty loud. It’ll infect your brain in a good way. Always in a good way. They’ve done a brilliant cover of Sonic Youth’s  Silver Rocket. Oh and their own song Solitude is beautiful also. They don’t just stick to one style of music. They mix lo-fi with ambient vibes and hints of Krautrock. I love them. I just love them.

 

(Oh and Kevin agrees with me that The Jesus And Mary Chain are better than The Beatles. Not many hold this opinion, but it’s good to know that someone else shares it. It’s a shame we live in a world where disliking them is wrong. We can all have an opinion, remember that. Be nice.)