Monday, February 13, 2012
Shai Hulud - A Profound Hatred Of Man
Purchase: LP (picture disc) or 7" (color)
Story by Jay Pepito, singer of Reign Supreme.
The first hardcore records I ever owned were the Gorilla Biscuits 7" and Turning Point's It's Always Darkest Before the Dawn. I liked both of these bands immediately and really started getting into some of their contemporaries: IE Youth of Today, Judge, Chain of Strength, and the like. I took to the whole straight-edge hardcore thing really well, and I felt like it was an appropriate voice for how I felt at the time.
But something was missing from the sound of hardcore present on their records. They were certainly intense and urgent, as I think all music really should be, but they lacked pure, unadulterated anger that made sense to me in a modern context. They sounded dated. As mad as they were, as much as they taught me that straight edge and punk rock were about spitting in the face of the world that rejects you, they didn't SOUND as pissed off as I felt. So I got out my trusty Revelation Records catalog, which I had taken home from the Alive and Well festival in Asbury Park, and began ordering stuff in search of other types of "hardcore."
I saw some band with an unpronounceable name (Shai Hulud), and decided to take a chance on both of their records, which was a 7" and a full length. From the first time I heard "Hardly," I was mesmerized. This band GOT me. They KNEW how I felt. And when I put on the LP, it was like an entire world opened up to me. No longer did I just see in the black and white lines of what hardcore SHOULD sound like. I knew right away that there was room for experimentation, and if you were musically competent, you could create something absolutely brilliant within the confines of the sound. Shai Hulud did that well over a decade ago, and they continue to do so today.
I've heard it said that it's ok to do something that other people have done before, as long as you do it well. That you somehow honor the past and carry the torch by usurping the brilliance of others and pretending it's your own. Nothing could be farther from the truth. You honor the past by respecting it, and knowing that it's not yours to mistreat, steal from and disgrace. In a world permeated by far too many posers, fakes, trend-hoppers and mental midgets who couldn't write a riff or a hook to save their lives, Shai Hulud stands out. They'll be remembered the same way Burn, Converge and other bands who took something and used it as a starting point to create their own new sound will be remembered. As innovators, and not recyclers; as leaders, and not followers.
Posted by donnymutt at 7:00 AM