Suburbanite - Suburbanite [7-inch] (Cover Artwork)


Suburbanite [7-inch] (2011)

Youth Attack

I recently learned pretty much by accident that Suburbanite are playing a show, and as I had assumed they were defunct, this struck me as extremely good news, and an opportunity to review this particular release. Sometimes hardcore bands tell you every last thing about themselves down to the name of the bass player's dog, but very often it's impossible to find information on bands, even (some might say especially) those that are very, very good. This is the case with Suburbanite. What I know is they contain members of Charles Bronson and Aerosols, and this EP, which appears to be their one release so far, destroys all in its path.

Suburbanite play what's recognisable as 80s-indebted hardcore punk, jagged and feral and unhinged, but they play it with the unspeakable nastiness, intensity and speed of powerviolence (perhaps not surprising given guitar player Mark McCoy's previous bands), and the combination is, suffice to say, a winning one. The production is raw in all the right ways, the seething vocals exploding from beneath razor-sharp distorted guitars, gouging bass and cracking drums all meshing together not into a sloppy mess, but a precision-engineered punch to the stomach.

You've got boiling-point speedpunk horrors like 20-second opener "Grateful Nation", and thunderous stomps like "Not the Same." Best of all is "Winter Soldier," almost an Oi! song, with lyrics equivalently brutal to the crushing music on display ("skinning rabbits back at camp/ butchering civvies in the street/ murder is just a fucking game/ so never yell retreat/ we are the winter soldier/ our war is never over") and the slashing riff and blistering speed of "When They Fucking Turn on You.".

It rips and snarls and thrashes and then, in six minutes eleven seconds, it's over, leaving you ashamed to have ever liked ska-punk. This is what anger sounds like. Please release an LP.