If you have yet to deep dive the embarrassment of riches over at UniteAsia.org, you’re messing up. The fine folks at the helm have quickly become the primary resource for Asian hardcore, metal, and punk. Cheers to them, as always, for my latest obsession.
Korea has a rich hardcore history. Most notably for me and countless others are the formative: The Geeks, Things We Say, and the current: Slant, Flush, Turn For Our, and the mighty filth of Scumraid.
Seoul-based hardcore punk band The Kitsches is nearly a decade in and I’m only just now getting hip to their vast catalogue. Having dropped a smattering of EP’s, splits, and an absolute ripper of a long player. Their most recent came in 2019 in the form of What Are You Now. Having habitually leaned on the aforementioned album to match jolts with my morning coffee, I was stoked to find their new EP.
The band’s latest is dubbed the honorary Too Kitsch to Punk. Aside from perhaps being a knowing nod or sneery wink at the Dead Kennedys classic, it’s raw and fast hardcore that’s as likely to sit alongside USHC classics from ‘82 as it is your more contemporary collection.
Song of the Day “Get Out” could just as easily have been any of the extended play’s other tracks. All of them implode right around the one-minute finish line. Aside from being a competent blitz of Adolescents sneer and Government Warning style muscle, I’m getting heavy Beach Impediment or La Vida Es Un Mus vibes here.
Atop a backdrop of laudable first wave hardcore, the vocals are what ultimately pulled me in for a closer look. They sound absolutely shredded and bilious, all phlegm and vitriol. At first blush, it’s something more akin to crust or the over the top, divisive gargles of Leftöver Crack. Regardless, they’re intense for any style but lend the proceedings an extra bite that feels exhilarating.
Kitsch, as we know, it comes and goes with the quickly turning tides of fashion. Delivered with fire and enthusiasm, The Kitsches are neither garish nor sentimental. This shit is fire. Get on it early.
Tagged: the kitsches