Sunday, January 2, 2011

Pure Hell - Noise Addiction

Recorded in 1978 but unreleased until 28 years later, Philly's Pure Hell intended this as the follow-up to their only single, but numerous difficulties, ranging from drugs, personal infighting, sexual misconduct, to rampaging egomania, combined to form an impenetrable barrier to productivity, not to mention racism inside and outside of the punk scene. Pure Hell predated Bad Brains by at least three years, arguably making them the earliest all-black punk band. Hearing it now, though, is a revelation: this album is wildly forward thinking, combining the twin-guitar noisy classicism of the Voidoids with the big choruses and scrappy energy of the Replacements, but already pushing towards the speed and brevity of hardcore. A professed favorite of luminaries like Lemmy Kilmister and Phil Lynott, this is yet another case of boundless potential squashed under the blunt thumb of human stupidity and shortsightedness. And yet, here is the record, intact and bracing 30 years later.
Rot in the Doghouse

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