Proletarian Art Threat – S/T EP

The Proletarian Art Threat are a Cleveland area hardcore band that likes to rant, and they’re more than happy to bring their various rants and raves to your soon-to-be-bloody ears. Picture it: four guys with names like Jack Shit, Asthmatic Enemy of God, Ottenbacher, and The Fabulous blasting away on their instruments, and shouting out these lyrics about politics and how crappy life is. Sounds wonderful!

And, actually, it is pretty wonderful. It’s not clean by any means, but this style of music wasn’t meant to be clean. It’s meant to be dirty and gritty and full of booze and spit. The guitar comes at you fast and thick, the drums loud and bare, the vocals spit in your face like yesterday’s lunch. There’s some serious attitude here, and it absolutely works for these guys, as if they believe what they’re doing and want to rub your face in it.

We start out with “Not Bad Looking for a Normal,” which has elements of old-school punk mixed in with a more modern hardcore chaotic sound. The punk I hear probably is in attitude, the vocals sometimes shouted with a kind of punk-rock snarl and the drums propelling the song into the punk genre. “Black Helicopters / Z (He is Alive)” (and what kind of name is that?) is more rocking, with some killer guitar riffs and vocals that remind me more of Johnny Rotten. And it ends with: “This had been a test of the emergency broadcast system. Had this been an actual emergency, you’d be fucked.”

“Carbon Paper for the Soul” is much more hardcore, with vocals almost incoherent yet spat out with feeling. It leads nicely into the energetic blast of “Proletarian Gospel Drive,” equal parts attitude and rock and punk behind some incredible and furious drum work. Finally, “Footnote” ends things with a frenzied rock track, the guitars blazing away and the vocals screamed out repetitively. Wow, this one’s intense!

This is a surprisingly good EP, because I expected something amateurish. It’s not, in fact, with powerful and political vocals and some high-powered rawk. But listening is only half the experience. Check out this band’s website for various rants about doing something with your life instead of living the daily grind. I love their warped photos and cartoons. This one’s a must-see.