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Sex & Glue Zine x Epic Dudes Podcast x Lesser Minds: Brian Burdzy Keeps Busy for Hardcore

As the distinct honor of Jersey’s Best Dancers has already been claimed, Brian Burdzy just might win the superlative of best multitasker. For those unfamiliar with the name, the Garden State punk polymath has clearly never listened to the old adage “pick a lane.” I first stumbled across Brian’s work via the Epic Dudes Podcast, an essential listen scattered across just north of a hundred episodes.

From there I was hipped to the equally essential, horror-obsessed synth project he lovingly dubbed Satanic Panic ‘81, whose tunes are well worth the dig. Ever industrious, last year Burdzy launched Sex & Glue: A Zine About Hardcore, resulting in a glorious and laborious print zine.

As if that endeavor wasn’t daunting enough, there’s an accompanying podcast that, thus far, has surveyed the entirety of Converge’s discography. Titled “Love as Arson," it’s the sort of deeply embedded and nuanced take on a band with an unfuckwithable legacy that still manages to inform diehards. 

Sex & Glue Zine rules on its own merits as a custodial document of hardcore’s current high tide moment, but it also acts as a label, promotional platform, and a constantly updated, killer distro. One look at Burdzy’s ever-expanding wares that bolster his zine’s web store shows a carefully cultivated stable of current punk, hardcore, and extreme music as tipped by a scene lifer. Containing none of the distasteful business of commerce therein, it’s a music lover paying it back in the grand tradition of merch table distro discoveries. 

This summer saw the ever engrossed author and podcaster manning a different microphone, this time as the vocalist for Sussex-based hardcore band Lesser Minds.

Shortly after dropping a 2-song demo, they’ve returned with a brand new twofer: “Lesser Minds/Obliteration (Of the Self).” Though listed as a single track, a gift for the Bandcamp inclined among us, it’s clearly demarcated with what feels like a table setting intro track and fleshed out devastator that follows.

Admittedly inspired by the likes of Death Threat, Integrity, and Freedom; that through line is acknowledged, but I’m getting major d beat vibes, from the impossibly low slung rhythm section to the pacing dictated by Burdzy’s commanding bark. Just check the rampaging gallop that ends “Obliteration…” or the tar-thick distortion that drapes everything in a nihilistic haze.

As weighted down as the crushing guitars may sound, they remain impossibly busy and there are some wild yet tasteful riffs tossed in to keep us guessing. Upon my initial listen, I heard Kylesa if they had been a death n’ roll band and or even a sludge band playing Negative Approach and, while that may still be true, there’s a hell of a lot going on here.

They travel everywhere in a relatively brief runtime, tossing in straightforward hardcore chug alongside a litany of other influences that range. The drumming is next level, moving from speedier 4/4 rumble to relentlessly heavy tribal runs at the drop of a hat. 

Don’t let the reductionist “Don’t Overthink It” that constitutes the entirety of the band’s bio fool you. This is hardcore made by people who know exactly what they’re doing. If “Lesser Minds” think up shit like this, IQ’s are bullshit. I’d rather hang with these kids.  

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Tagged: podcast, zine