Like every December, it's time to recapitulate the previous months. Successfully introduced last year we are stoked to repeat last year's community voting. Besides voting for the usual categories like LPs and Best of The Rest you will automatically decide about 'Best EP', 'Best Demo', 'Best Split Record', 'Newcomers', 'labels' and more. We can't wait to get this thing started all over again.

Exactly, you have to vote! Therefore we created a poll, containing two lists - one for LPs (10 Votes) and another one for EPs, demos and splits (15 Votes). The vote tally will be used to create some kind of community End-Of-The-Year-List which will be published quite soon.

We would be super appreciative if you could share this with your friends, since we want as many people as possible to participate. Hopefully we can reach 150 votes once again.

Votes collected: 90

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After the publications of Undici/Dodici and a couple of split records with Улыбайся Ветру and Rainmaker it went quiet around one of Italy’s most popular screamo bands of the past years. With their conceptional debut Long Player, Prima Che Tutto Bruci Øjne finally reports back. Before the final release of the album, drummer Jacopo Sanna and guitarist Alessandro Ilic Mezza sat down with us to talk about their new material.

There has been a lot of changes for Øjne during the past one and a half year. Please give us a short update on the recent developments around the band and maybe sum up what’s going on in your lives right now.

Jacopo:We haven’t played a single show in the past two years, and actually we have never even practiced as a full band throughout all this time, but I think the only major change that happened was that we changed our singer. Other than that, right now some of us live abroad but that is something we have learned to live with. Since we started as a band all of our members and ex members have spent at least six months from home, sometimes way more than that, and the only two times we all lived in the area of Milan we wrote our two records, Undici/Dodici between 2011 and 2012 and our new album Prima Che Tutto Bruci between 2014 and 2015. The rest of the time we were literally all around the world, and I guess that’s something that have always defined our band.
Actually, right now it feels weird to know that ¾ of Øjne are in the same place (all except our bass player Axel, who lives in the States). It’s not gonna last long, Alessandro is going back to study in Germany soon and maybe I will move away too, we will see. For now, I can tell you that a few weeks ago we had a little practice back in the rehearsal space where we wrote Undici/Dodici and damn, it felt great and really emotional, especially when we played old songs like “Naufragio” or “Sotto i Tigli” and realized we still enjoyed playing them so much.

Back in September 2016 you welcomed a new vocalist to your lineup. Gian, who already participated in the recordings of your upcoming album called Prima Che Tutto Bruci, replaced Jacopo C. Could you please introduce your new singer to our readers and tell us what made you consider him for this job?

Jacopo: We already kinda knew Gian, whose full name is Gianluca, ‘cause we played with one of his old bands, Thy Solace, some years ago, and in general I saw him at shows several times. We also knew he liked our band so probably he would have liked to sing with us, and in fact he said yes. He comes from Cinisello Balsamo, a city in the metropolitan area of Milan recently made famous by a trap song called “Ciny”. He’s been in several bands in the past, mostly hardcore, like A Faded Glory and The Seeker. This was the first time he sang in Italian and I think he was amazing, we were actually impressed during the recording sessions, he would record a verse perfectly and then keep saying “let’s do it again!”, so that we would have five or six versions of the same verse that all sounded perfect.

Alessandro: I never met Gian before we started working with him and I have to say that indeed, he was great. I’ve spent a lot of time in the studio with him, just the two of us, recording the vocals, and I can say that he really put everything he had into it. It was amazing to see how much dedication he had to a project he was just getting into.

How did this change as well as the difficult location situation of the particular members affect the recording process of your upcoming record?

Jacopo: It’s funny ‘cause when we started recording I really really thought we would be really fast this time, unlike when we recorded Undici/Dodici. I remember I recorded the drums for Prima Che Tutto Bruci in a day, on July 30th, 2015, it was very tiring but also very satisfying, and just a few days later we started recording the guitars! And I made a post on Øjne’s Facebook saying “Hey this time we’re being fast!”. I wish I never did it haha... We recorded the guitars that summer, and in September we recorded the bass before our bass player Axel moved to London, and in the meantime I was in Belgrade for two months to do research for my master thesis and kinda lost touch with what was happening. Did you finish recording the guitars in September?

Alessandro: Not really! By that time we had just the main parts, the ones we wrote while rehearsing. In the next couple of months me and Stefano, our friend who has always been helping us with studio recordings, tours and everything else (we even refer to him as the 5th member of Øjne!) worked on the arrangements, rhythmic guitars and so on.. Quite a strange workflow, isn’t it? It really worked though: a lot of what’s in the record now was done in that time!

Jacopo: After that we still thought we were gonna be done soon, but then changing singer literally postponed recording the vocals to summer 2016, so I guess it was mostly the line-up change that delayed this album rather than us living far from each other.

For us your first Long Player seems to be a major challenge, especially after such an outstanding debut EP like Undici/Dodici. With songs like Glasgow or Naufragio you were able to attract the attention of the international screamo community. How did you deal with the high expectations resulting from that?

Jacopo: I think that when we started writing Prima Che Tutto Bruci we were not feeling any kind of pressure or thinking about high expectations. We just wanted to finally write an album that would be cohesive and that would make sense as a whole. Now I gotta say that sometimes I kinda worry whether people will like it or not haha.. You know, when I remember that people like Undici/Dodici and I go back to listen to it my first thought is “fuck, we were so different and raw back then”, and I would say our new record doesn’t sound like that. I’m mostly concerned about the vocals, changing singer is a tough thing and some people might prefer the old vocals. But well, that’s a matter of taste, and it’s ok if someone won’t like it. I’m fully satisfied with the new album to be honest.

Alessandro: No pressure indeed! It was just a lot of fun. You have to know that we started writing Prima Che Tutto Bruci as soon as we got our first rehearsal space. Having a space like that on our own meant that we had all the time we needed to write music at our own pace. Finally we were not forced into those two-hours-slots we were used to, and this led to a new way of thinking about songwriting and playing together, with way less stress or haste.

What were your own expectations for the new material regarding sound and approach, especially compared to your previous work?

Jacopo: When we began writing the new songs in summer 2014 our goal was pretty simple and clear: we wanted to write eight tracks that would all be as good as the two songs of our splits, and we wanted them to make sense together, one after another. Undici/Dodici was just a bunch of songs put together in an EP, basically the first five songs we wrote together over the course of our first five or six months as a band. This time we were much more methodical than that, in a sense that we started writing the first track knowing it would be the beginning of the album, and only when it was done we would move on to the second one, and so on. So we started writing the first song of Prima Che Tutto Bruci in September 2014, and finished writing the seventh and eighth track in May 2015. That’s pretty cool to me ‘cause I also associate the songs with different periods of my life, with various world events, and I also think that the songs are slightly influenced by the season they were written in, as if the record reflects autumn and winter on side A and spring on side B.

Alessandro: I had no particular sound in mind when we started; maybe the only guideline we followed was to further develop the ideas that were already there in the songs for the two splits we made (even if they were still a bit raw back then). 
Other than that, it’s definitely true what Jacopo said: even before starting, we knew we wanted the record to be solid and cohesive. Two songs in and we already decided that this was going to be somewhat of a concept album - even if we had no clue what theme to choose! However, the actual concept behind Prima Che Tutto Bruci came way later: the first lyrics we wrote were a lot different; then, when Gian came, many things - between us and around us - had changed: it felt just natural to change the lyrics and eventually rewrite them from scratch.

What’s the concept behind Prima Che Tutto Bruci?

Alessandro: In a word, it’s about violence.
In particular, it’s about the process of getting in touch with violence, suffering from it, getting used to it, knowing it, understanding it and eventually sympathizing with it. A process in which you discover that our bubble, in which we have lived our early years, can quickly burst when facing the things in life. All in all, it’s about the discovery that violence is just a part in everyone’s life and that it should be considered as it is - and not as something external or extraordinary.
And by violence - I think also Jacopo would agree - I mean either the everyday, normalized violence as well as violence on a larger scale.
It's somehow a training path - an evolution of the way we relate to violence; and we may eventually have to face/find out that it could be much closer to us than we would ever expect.

Who came up with the idea and what lead you to the decision to address violence as the topic of the LP?

Jacopo: Our first idea was to write a concept album based on an Italian book called “Invisible Cities” by Italo Calvino, but soon we realized it would have been too hard so we kind of stopped trying, and I think at some point we even stopped thinking about writing a concept album, or at least forgot about it, and only wrote some provisional lyrics so that we could play some of the songs live. Once the whole album except the vocals was already recorded I thought, “well, it might be time to start writing something..” and I wrote the lyrics for the first two songs just talking about stuff that had happened to me or that I had been thinking of lately--the same writing process of Undici/Dodici after all. But once I showed the lyrics to the others we realized that the two songs had a common thread, that of potential violence and violence itself, and that they could have been the beginning of something greater. So we just went with it, and me and Alessandro wrote the rest of the album starting from there.
Violence was a topic we were all thinking about a lot in the past few years, and we felt like it was the most interesting thing we could talk about in a record. We were also inspired by Storia di un impiegato, an album released in 1973 by Fabrizio de André, an Italian singer-songwriter. It tells the story of an office worker with a normal life who suddenly starts getting attracted by the Italian wave of red terrorism of the ‘70s and takes it as a chance to do something concrete in his mediocre life. So he becomes a bomber, though such individualism is seen as a defeat by the end of the album. We wanted to write something like that but adapt it to our own lives and to the world of today.

Alessandro: At least for me, during the process of writing the lyrics, a huge role was also played by the series of terror acts that Europe had to face at that time. The sense of instability we feel these days is kinda the zeitgeist we have to cope with. Violence is all over and media keep feeding us with hatred; and the fact that the attacks to the Western society, as we are used to know it, have been perpetrated by people that could have been born and raised right in our neighborhood is even more upsetting. We've been living in a Europe that knew peace much more than the Europe of our parents and grandparents; we grew up in loving and supportive families, we had the chance to go to good schools and to take all the best we could get from where we lived. We're born at the right time, on the right side of society - but I always had the feeling that somehow this mechanism could eventually break down.
I have the feeling that this violence we are now getting used to isn’t really related to a cultural clash, but rather to an unbalance that is inherent to our cultural and economic system. As it is, we cannot guarantee opportunities to everyone. And the chances I had were precluded to someone else in order to allow me to have them. 
We couldn't have really thought it could have been going on indefinitely.

This could let you think it's a very political record, but it's not - at least not entirely. It's more personal, introspective. Rather than facing the issue directly, it is about an intimate relationship with what's going on in the world around us.

How would you describe the sound of the album compared to your older releases?

Alessandro: For the very first time we wrote our music all together, building the song as a whole band and not working on some ideas someone came up with at home and brought to the rehearsal space. This has given much more energy and consistency to the songs; the result is therefore a record that - in my opinion - finally stands out when played live.
Anyhow, we managed to preserve the songwriting style that I like: always trying to change rhythms, riffs and atmospheres among parts within the same song. I quite like the extremes when it comes to music: either is super repetitive, almost obsessive, or it has to be very diverse: either it’s post-punk or it’s math(-ish).

Jacopo: Having our own practice space for the first time had a huge impact on our band. We would have these 4-5 hours long practices that were tiring but great, and I think we have learned to play our music much better since then. So that’s definitely something that influenced the new album, but at the same time I feel like an album like this was what we always wanted to write since we started as a band. So it’s not like we changed our goal when writing music, it’s just that now we had the means and the experience to do what we wanted to do. On a personal level, I also gotta say I was rather influenced by the bands we played with at that time, I’m thinking in particular of Old Soul, with whom we shared some shows in summer 2014, and Healing Powers, with whom we toured the UK a few months later. I think seeing them inspired me in my contribution to the songwriting at least.

Sitting right in the middle of the tracklist, Sull'Altro Lato del Fiume is the centerpiece of Prima Che Tutto Bruci. But also sound-wise the song stands out, unfolding an epic atmosphere. What is the story behind the song and what influenced you to write the Strokes-esque guitar riff at the one minute mark?

Alessandro: Sull’Altro Lato Del Fiume is the moment in which the storytelling in the record reaches its turning point: the song is about losing your own identity as you realize that you’re nothing more than the result of every single thing that has happened in your life until now; and then, if something would have gone differently, would you be different from the person you think you are? You might even find yourself on the other side of violence, that very same violence that now horrifies you.
To cut a long story short, this is a song about a change of perspective; that’s why I like to think that the structure of the song suits its meaning: it is divided in two distinct parts. The first more hectic and varied, the second quite epic and post-rock-ish. This variation within the song corresponds to that very change. The lyrics are divided in two parts as well; I wrote the first part, based on an actual letter I received some years ago and that, recently, I couldn't find nor remember what it said; that made me feel like I lost some important part of my own past that day. The second part, instead, was written by Jacopo - and I think he did an amazing job telling how it’s easy to climb into someone else’s skin when you have left behind all the little things you’re made of.

As for the music, I’m afraid I don’t have any exciting story to tell! First of all, while writing the record, we always kept in mind that this was going to be released on vinyl. We realized that the fourth song would have been the end of side A; thus we wanted it to be some sort of closure: a great (halfway) finale.
Also, I was (and I am) quite into that indie/post-punk-revival (is it even a thing?) and so records from 2005-2010 from bands like Editors, The Killers and Interpol are a substantial part of my musical background. I think the Strokes-esque riff comes from there.. and by the fact we thought it’d be funny to put a bit of everything in this record!

Alessandro, you decided to restrain the album for quite a long time. What were the reasons to hold it back and why do you think it’s the right moment to put it finally out?

Alessandro:It wasn’t a decision I took by myself; it was instead something we all have agreed on. We think records are meant to be played live, especially this one. We didn’t want to release a record while we were sure we wouldn’t be able to play it for months: at that time, I was living in Germany and Axel was already in the US.

Any chance we can hear the new songs live in the near future?

Jacopo: Playing shows is something we love and want to do. I would personally love to play more shows in Italy (we have never played in Florence, Rome or Naples and that’s a shame!), and of course I’d love to tour Europe again and to go to places like Spain and the Balkans, though my dream has always been playing in Russia. However, we can’t promise anything right now, we’re just hoping that we’ll manage to play shows sooner or later, ‘cause releasing records and getting likes on Facebook is cool, but seeing those same people in person is something else, and it’s something we miss I think. So yeah, fingers crossed.

Besides your own release there are many albums, EPs etc. that already came out in 2017. What are your favorite releases this year so far? Any guilty pleasures?

Jacopo: Regarding screamo, my favorite releases of the year were probably the record by Bastos from Romania, Epoch by Yumi from Singapore, the EP by Yotsuya Kaidan, amazing band from Ukraine, and the underrated, crazy record by our friends Volta. Other than that, I haven’t listened to so much screamo this year, some of my favorite records released in the past few months have been the ones of Alex Cameron and Makthaverskan. Unfortunately you also mentioned guilty pleasures, so I should confess that in the past few months I’ve been listening to so much trash pop music from the Balkans and yeah, I think it’s damaging my brain but I can’t resist it.

Alessandro: No 2017 music for me at the moment! The most recent discovery for me was Spectres from Vancouver; we went to their show in Milan last month and I really enjoyed it! They are very post-punk though, as most of the music I’m listening right now.
One of the bands I’ve been listening a lot lately are, once again, Interpol: El Pintor is an amazing record, and I think much of the post-rock influence in our record comes from them rather than from proper post-rock outfits. Also, the first two records from the Italian noise-rock band Il Teatro Degli Orrori are currently on my everyday playlist. As you might have understood, I’m not really into punk music right now! But at least I’ve (almost) quitted listening to trashy italian trap, that was my guilty pleasure - and it was starting to get out of hand..

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When screamo from Canada and metalcore from the States meet to fight patriarchy, a band posthumously releases music and a Russian emoviolence threepiece covers The Cure you’re probably reading SBS #47. The latest installment features Rosacea, The New Harmony, Vampires and Поминай как звали.

Rosacea - Rosacea


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Bearing lots of top-class screamo acts, Canada is also home to Rosacea, a five-headed group which flew way under the radar. With their new self-titled EP, the band from Victoria, British Columbia, now moves to the focus of interest. The six-song-collection starts with Cool Girl, a solidarity track for all women suffering under sexists and their behavior within the music scene as well as in everyday life. Atop of the song’s punk rock fundament, vocalist Max yells „you're not like the others, they're just here to get fucked. That’s what they tell you, and you keep your mouth shut“. After this outburst of fury the follow-ups excel due to their diversity, as of now yielding an angular screamo sound. Favorite song: Bedhead

"We spent the winter listening to The shins. I spilled my heart to you, ill-preserved in bourbon and you would just listen "because that's what friends are for“. How could we ever afford both our apartment and our grocery bills? We were so undeserving of being grown up, the words stung as they passed my lips. But we got by."

Поминай как звали - self-titled


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Hailing from Moscow, emoviolence trio Поминай как звали (Remember what they called) consists of vocalist Jura, who also plays bass, guitarist Danik and Nikita on drums. Recently released, their self-titled debut is a demolishing monstrosity even if according to the band not everything turned out as initially wanted. The eight songs include the cover of The hanging garden, which originally was written by post-punk gods, The Cure. While Jura literally screams his lungs out, Danik and Nikita construct the whipping wall of sound, proving that this song also works within a rougher setting as if it was always supposed to be a screamo tune.

"Creatures kissing in the rain. Shapeless in the dark again. In the hanging garden please don't speak. In the hanging garden no one sleeps."

Vampires - Vampires


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Already recorded two years ago, Vampires, a former band from Ann Arbor, finally took the step to posthumously release a self-titled collection of four songs on their bandcamp. with stars in her eyes opens the EP quite furiously. A sentiment of pure joy immediately begins to diffuse, as the dreamy instrumental arrangement and vocals collide. The following songs from It’s been done, which offers some high-pitched screams, to gold rush are rich in emotions and continue what the opening track has triggered. Vampires consisted of Jon Riley, John Sciortino, Mac Porter and Maya Chun and this record is their legacy.

"I lick my wounds, like a dog in the cold I am looking for a reason to ache I bite my tongue, while the radio reminds me that Life is a Highway." [Alex Jones and Me]

The New Harmony - Song and Rhyme Answers to Children’s Everyday Questions


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A year after their debut, New Jersey-based sextet The New Harmony, released their sophomore EP called Song and Rhyme Answers to Children’s Everyday Questions. The four songs are a melting pot of many kinds of extreme music genres. Particularly, it’s the ferocious clash between metalcore, a sub-genre that recently became fashionable again, and emoviolence, constituting the appeal of the release. The wide pallet of vocals, covering the range from clean to grunted to ear-piercing high-pitched, also contributes to the stunning compositions and supports the created atmosphere during each of the EP's 9 minutes.

"False hierarchy of man held up by those who suffer. Their bodies make up your throne. Their blood is on your hands. Feign ignorance, deny accountability for the murder of millions. Led to believe that the lives of others are less important than yours. "

The Ultimate Screamo Band is currently one of the hottest acts within the international screamo scene. Guillaume Archambault utilizes the project to unfold his musical genius, writing the songs, the lyrics and of course playing every single instrument. Now, we finally had the chance to catch up with him to talk about his passion and everything happening around the project - right now as well as in the near future.

Hey Guillaume, thanks a lot for sitting down with us to speak about your project - „The Ultimate Screamo Band“. Not too long ago you came back from a US tour with Commuovere. How was it?

Guillaume: The Ultimate Screamo Band US tour 2017 with Commuovere was simply awesome and amazing; in the end we played 16 shows of pure punk screamo energy where we met with so many great DIY bands like us, revisited some old friends and made new ones along the way. I cannot express how grateful I am to all the people who hosted us and made me realize this dream. This has also been a very liberating tour for me, as I am used to sit behind the drums in my other projects and fronting an emoviolence band was always one of the challenges I wanted to achieve. I consider myself a timid person (on some levels); this tour made me comfortable at every show and helped me break the barriers of shyness on stage. It was a truly great experience that I am happy I shared with Commuovere and my two friends Robin and Alex, who played with me. Despite all the bad political news we hear about the United States, I think it is a truly beautiful place in the world where the punk scene is strong and tight, and where there are a lot of really good hearted, all inclusive and respectful people. This tour was just magical.

Following a bunch of shows in last year’s August, the recent tour has been your second live appearance. To turn a one-man-project like TUSB into a functioning live band you had to find musicians to join you on stage. How did the collaboration with Robbin (drums) and Alex (guitar, ex-Nous Étions) come about?

Guillaume: Turning TUSB into a functional live band is not something I had in mind when I first created the project. The idea was mostly to release records and have fun being creative. What is truly amazing about this type of music is that you can travel with it and visit the scene in different areas of the world, and I have always loved that about it. The first 3 shows played in 2016 were sort of a road test for the project. Finding friends to play with me was kind of complicated but what is cool about this 'band' is that I can switch instrument if need be. Robin, my best friend, has played drums for all the live shows so far; as for bass and guitar, the lineup was slightly different from 2016 to 2017—this band is really malleable and I love the dynamics it creates. Playing the songs live is so much fun!

How did the preparation of the tour looked like for the three of you?

Guillaume: The preparation of the tour was definitely an important part of the whole process. Basically, how we work is: I sit down with each musician individually and teach them all the songs; with Robin who is a younger drummer, this has morphed into some sort of drumming lessons, and we have a lot of fun doing it—practicing speed and different time signatures; with Alex this year it was super fun to work with an actual guitar player who interpreted the songs better than I would. We tabbed all the songs together and practiced fast tremolo picking, we had a lot of laughs around the kitchen table, screamo is fun for that. In the end when all is ready we just practice the set a few times in a jamming space, set up a good guitar and bass tone, borrow a bunch of amps and everything is good to go.

Right before crossing the US border, TUSB also played two warm-up shows in Montreal and Toronto, where you performed at Zegema Beach Festival. You played in, let's say, for punk shows unconventional locations and occasions. Tell us about your experience there.

Guillaume: Playing Zegema Beach Fest in Toronto was one of the highlights of that tour, it was actually the first show that was booked and sort of became the reason why I took the band on the road again. One of the particular things that I noticed about the US scene, a big difference with Europe and even Canada, is that houseshows and basement shows are a very common thing (concerts happen more often in show houses than in bar venues). So you end up playing shows in different settings. Knowing that and loving it, I decided I would organize the tour kick off party in Montreal in my own apartment, it truly set up a good mood to begin this tour with. Then in the States, when things did not work out for whatever reason, venues would change last minute; and so we ended up playing in a pizza restaurant and also at a wedding (the ultimate screamo wedding in West Virginia). We met some amazing folks everywhere and truly felt accepted in a big family.

What was your favorite show of the tour and why?

Guillaume: It is really hard to pick one show and say it was my favorite; I definitely enjoyed every one of them. I guess I can mention the show in Amherst, Massachusetts, where we played with Sleeper Wave and Worst Days, two bands that I consider family now. The energy was beautiful and we played in an old 18th century house; Commuovere played such a good set that night, everything was perfect.

You had to cancel your show in Indianapolis, because Commuovere and you, both felt unsafe at the venue, explaining that „sometimes you have to decide what’s best for you and your friends“. I couldn’t help but think about Saulnier’s „Green Room“ and its mirky setting, crossing my fingers that everything’s ok. What actually happened?

Guillaume: The date in Indianapolis was simply canceled because the organization of the show was already extremely drunk before any band even got to the venue, nothing really bad happened but some of us in our crew felt it was not such a good idea to bring our instruments out of the van. We were also all getting very impatient at this point in the tour and voted democratically to cancel both our presences at the event. There was no nazis or violence like in the movie you mentioned.

You speak of TUSB as a ripp-off project, which is „heavily influenced by a few bands of the past“. What was the initial inspiration for you to come back to the sound of these bands, and which ones were you thinking about more specifically?

Guillaume: What we call 'screamo' or 'emoviolence' (or skramz for the younger generation) has always been my favorite genre in the hardcore punk spectrum. The melodic riffs, the buzzing sound of the guitars, the intricate time signatures, the screams; elements that really touch me personally, right in the heart. I started this project because I felt I could not quite find anyone interested in playing the same music in my hometown. I actually started "the ultimate screamo band" by recording covers of my favorite bands; Orchid, the Apoplexy Twist Orchestra, Raein, Buried Inside, Union of Uranus, Pageninetynine, The Flying Worker, Kaospilot, etc. Unfortunately, those recordings were never finished. Later on, in a very dark moment of my life, I felt very creative and decided I could write my own stuff and expel my demons. It worked. Now this project is my main 'band' and I feel very fulfilled by everything happening with it, despite the fact that the name is not very serious and is often laughed at.

You’re currently in Europe, working on new material. We’re eagerly waiting to hear new music from you. What can we expect, musically as well as in terms of the release-format?

Guillaume: The new material was mostly written during my trip in Europe; through the screamo online network I met a very nice person (hi Fabian!) who was nice enough to record my album and lend me instruments to work with. You should check out the studio, it's called Sunsetter Studio, located in Bremen, Germany. This new album is going to be 10 songs long; it will be very raw and aggressive, emo and violent. I am still figuring out the release format but for now the idea is to press a one-sided 10" and to consider it my first "LP", but the total running time is under 8 minutes. We will see! So far two-three DIY labels have shown interest in participating in the release; I am very excited for it.

What can we expect musically as well as lyrically?

Guillaume: The songs are really short and are the logical continuity of my previous material; I tried to incorporate different chords on guitar and expend the universe of the bass lines; lyrically, this album, like my two previous releases, relates the breakup of my last love relationship. The album title is 'Tout est fini', which means 'everything is over'; it's a sort of hommage response to La Quiete's La fine non è la fine (The end is not the end).

Any touring plans for 2018?

Guillaume:Yes, totally! Here is a scoop: ultimate screamo band will be in Europe in May 2018, I'm currently beginning the booking process for this tour. Keep an eye out and come say hi!

Last but not least we’d like to give you the chance to name a few bands you like to recommend.

Guillaume: If you read this interview, there are a lot of chances you know more bands than me; right now in my playlist is: Hot Cross, Malady, Louise Cyphre, Orchid (as always) and Nirvana. In the music scene right now, bands that really impressed me are: Cassus (UK), Handsaw (USA), Piri Reis (MALAYSIA), Massa Nera (USA), People's Temple Project (USA), Unable to Fully Embrace this Happiness (Austria), Rutka Laskier (CZ), Lora (RUSSIA) and of course Commuovere (CAN).

Hey thanks for this interview!


Following two projects with Kelut and Vi älskade varandra så mycket, dreamcore duo, mrtex are back with another split collaboration. This time, the duo teamed up with Baltimore-based screamo newcomers, SYNODUS HORRENDA. To get an idea of what this fusion sounds like, scroll down and enjoy the full premiere of the split record, which will be out on August 7 through Zegema Beach Records.

The liaison between the four-headed screamo pack SYNODUS HORRENDA and mrtex, marks the last release before renowned Dave Norman, writer of Saturated Brain / Open Mind, founder of Zegema Beach Records and vocalist of mrtex, leaves Canada for his new home, New Zealand. Besides Norman, the other half of the two-piece consists of YAPHET KOTTO’s bassist, Chris Story, who assumes the instrumental part of the band. Opening mrtex’s side of the split, Future Refract is the very first song of Story and Norman, eclipsing the four-minute mark. The song starts with a dreamy built-up, fascinating through its beautiful post-rock-fundament, only disrupted once, as wild drums momentarily throw everything into turmoil and chaos begins to prevail. The Truth About Human Design follows the well-orchestrated opener and sweeps across the listener within one and a half minute, offering a never ending fight between mayhem and chime.

As the last note of The Truth About Human Design has faded away it’s time to switch sides. Recently founded screamo quartet SYNODUS HORRENDA contributes five tracks, starting off with The Thrill of Living is Gone, a song, which indicates their spiritual and artistic proximity to hardcore and punk rock music. On the subsequent songs, Robbie, Juney, Nick and Billy continually embrace those influences, establishing a dissonant, sometimes abstruse sound. All of their debut songs harmoniously blend into each other, resulting in a coherent overall pattern, which will attract your ears at any time.

Dave Norman about the release: „The split features just over 12 minutes of caustic, screamy and sometimes atmospheric hardcore. The 50 cassettes are each housed in a unique photograph (so there are 50 different covers!) wrapped around a black tape, all within a plastic, resealable sleeve. Pre-Orders will be up on ZBR and orders will ship on the release date of Monday August 7th, 2017.“

Dave Norman about the side of SYNODUS HORRENDA: „From Baltimore, SYNODUS HORRENDA are a new band with members that have spent time in Eyelet, мища, Dawntreader and Sunners, to name a few. Their five debut tracks trade off vocals from June and Nick and generally are pulsating, raw and dirty screamo with a heavy emphasis on punk rock and hardcore."



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Four fantastic releases to fight your post-fluff depression are discussed right below. Besides the almighty Fashion Statements of the Socially Aware, the hype album of the Californian sasscore group SeeYouSpaceCowboy, we also recommend the latest release by Commuovere as well as the amazing debuts of Go Hibiki and Disney 69.

SeeYouSpaceCowboy... - Fashion Statements of the Socially Aware


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With their unmistakable sound, the Californian sasscore collective, SeeYouSpaceCowboy, currently makes hearts leap, leading a reinvigorated movement, once initiated through bands like Seattle’s The Blood Brothers. The five-some around the Sgarbossa siblings evolve a charisma, as probably seen for the last time since straight edge outfit Have Heart in 2002. Of course, musically either of the bands can’t be even approximately compared, but the capability of both to attract hardcore enthusiasts with their music and their undeniable presence seems to be quite similar. While the band consider themselves as a metalcore band, fragments of their sound and the aesthetics hovering around them strongly reminds of 90s screamo. With Fashion Statements of the Socially Aware the band from San Diego delivers a milestone of a sub-genre, that seemed to be forgotten not long ago.

Commuovere - Du besoin de disparaître de soi


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Recently returned home from their common US Tour with The Ultimate Screamo Band, it is time to examine Quebec-based screamo trio Commuovere and their latest Extended Play Du besoin de disparaître de soi, which was released earlier this year. The three songs, found on the record, are encircled by a claustrophobic atmosphere, whose crushing density unfolds right at the outburst of ’Consommer l’absence’. Subsequently, the one minute instrumental ’Dépersonnalisation / Déréalisation’ bridges to ’La dentition d’existe’, a high intensity song that - just like the opener - offers a gloomy setting, emphasizing the raw emotions in Marie’s vocals.

"May I go with you? May I just disappear?"

Go Hibiki - In the Years Spent


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Vocalist Uhl’s raspy voice opens the quartet’s debut asking "What's worse? If the world's gonna end or that it never will?“ - a significant question and the start of one hell of a six-song-collection, which musically leaves nothing to be desired. There are just few bands who have the prominent ability to craft moving melodies, without losing any energy or being overly obtrusive. Missoula-based Go Hibiki is one of those groups. Rob Cave, Alasdair Lyon, Elizabeth Taillon-Rogosienski and Ethan J. Uhl are serving the right dose of melodious tunes, shedding a strong punk rock attitude, which infuses every second of In the Years Spent.

"I lick my wounds, like a dog in the cold I am looking for a reason to ache I bite my tongue, while the radio reminds me that Life is a Highway." [Alex Jones and Me]

Disney 69 - Live Demo


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Disney 69’s firstling is a strong contender for the best demo recording of the current year. Based in St. Louis, Missouri, the screamo duo wrote seven sincere songs, which might sound a bit rough around the edges, but at the same time, they presage the great potential of the talented band. The intimate lyrics, once written by the band’s former vocalist Sarah, now are passionately screamed by Dove, who - just like Jeff Smith of Jeromes Dream - doesn’t use a microphone for her vocals. This definitely adds up to the raw and intense experience you will get by listening to the demo. From the opener called Midland to the very last song, the album is packed with a classy, top-notch screamo sound.


On the latest episode we share our thoughts about two amazing debuts on full-length distance, as elite screamo from Richmond, VA meets top-notch screamo from Nuremberg, Germany. This is the fourth installment of Notes From A Smooth Talker featuring todlowski (FFO: Masada, Rêche, Lost Boys) and ostraca, formally known as Kilgore Trout (FFO: Old Soul, Youth Funeral).

ostraca - last


Right before their European tour, Richmond-based emoviolence outfit ostraca have released their first Long Player on Skeletal Lightning and i corrupt records. Since then, the groundbreaking album has rocked the foundation of the entire international screamo community. Recorded at Minimum Wage during the end of the previous year, last follows Faces of The Moving Year - a split with Denton’s Fflesh Born - and the band’s 2015 debut EP Deathless. The threepiece from Virginia establishes a dense and versatile sound straight from the beginning of “Waiting for the Crash“. While the opening stunner comes along with a well-structured composition, the following “The Orchard“ is forged out of chaos and incensement, before “Childlike initially returns to disentangled fairways. During the span of the whole album, Brian, Gus and John are able to master the balancing act between the genre typical dissonant sound and majestic melodies, which are brought to bear in songs like “Worn Away“ or the epochal ten minutes song “Nausea“. Last mentioned builds the centerpiece of the album, captivating through its ingenious buildup. This leads to a stormy climax, where Gus Caldwell begins to scream “Is there anything more to life than just trying to find what little joy in it you can?“ - only to notice that “You’ll get nothing and think you deserve it, fight and fight to cry at the outstretched hands of the angels in your life. Suffer through it all to find a friend and then recoil.“ shortly after. With last ostraca set new standards in songwriting, delivering a six-song collection, which will be thought of as a modern classic really soon.

“There is nothing more awful than the knowledge that you can and will hurt people, especially the ones closest to you. How much easier to pray for the meteor, or the quake, or the wave. At my worst, I am waiting for the crash so that there’s nothing to explain. To everything you made: wave goodbye. The hospital’s never going to call, it was you all along.” [Waiting for the Crash]

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todlowski - s/t #2


Nuremberg and its nearby cities have a little, but thriving underground scene, yielding stunning screamo acts such as Masada, Lilith, Lost Boys or Rêche. Attracting genre lovers from everywhere with their distinctive sound, they all have long made a name for themselves far beyond city borders. Originating from the same set as the above-mentioned bands, todlwoski consists of Oliver and Nico. The duo, known for their intelligent and humorous, yet crucial lyrics, have now digitally released their very first record on full-length distance. Just by looking at the cover, there’s a certain fuck you attitude floating towards the beholder, later manifesting itself within the band’s rough and minimalistic sound and lines like „PC spielen und porno, guten morgen, bon giorno, Einschlaflektüre serviert von Adorno, leben mit Sinn, ist nicht mehr drin, wer danach fragt, hat längst versagt!“. Todlowski puts emphasis on multi-vocals and mathy sound-structures, which unfold their full impact right from the start of pardon, the opening track of the self-titled album. Arranged by the distorted guitar, virtuosically played by Oliver, choppy melodies and changes in pace are drawn through each of the eight songs. In katze cola or mimimi moralia the two-piece seems to be on top of their game, refining their overall work on their energetic debut Long Player.

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