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Album Review

Wolfbrigade's signing with Southern Lord for the release of 2012's Damned LP feels like something of a homecoming. After all, arguably no other record label has invested as much in the 2010s' renascent d-beat/crustcore scene, and, as one of the style's earliest pioneers (back when they were known as Wolfpack), the Swedes weren't likely to find more sympathetic backers for this new phase of their career. Nevertheless, the label may face a few challenges in reintroducing to the public at large a band that spent much of its existence deep underground (and overseas), broke up and made up several times, and, oh yeah, felt compelled to make that name change in order to avoid negative associations with a Swedish neo-Nazi prison gang! Not that you can blame them. Unless, of course, the music is impressive enough to speak for itself, and that, by and large, is the case with Damned's surprisingly diverse song selection, which frequently stretches beyond the traditionally fast-and-furious, nose-to-the-grindstone crustcore invective on "Feel the Flames," "Hurricane Veins," and "Damned to Madness." What's more, check out the fearlessly melodic guitar parts adorning the brutal central husk of "The Curse of Cain," the conspicuous rot & roll chug-chug-chug of "Catch 22," and the pulse-tweaking series of starts and stops ratcheting "Ride of Steel," a song that feels more like Amon Amarth's Viking death metal, at times, than d-beat (but then, you might expect that of any album recorded at famed Studio Fredman, by Frederik Nordstrom). Ultimately, though, what makes all of the above actually work is probably Wolfbrigade's believable anger and conviction after all these years — not bad for a bunch of old vets. So call them Wolfpack, Wolfbrigade, or Wolfbridgeclub: by any name, it sounds as though a full moon was illuminating and instigating the sessions that led to Damned's creation.

Customer Reviews

12 of the same thing?

OK, i have never heard songs sound sooo much alike on one album. What? These guys aren't that bad but good grief, change up a bit more.


this is so peaceful. i love it.

The Sweeds do it best!

The only hardcore worth listening too!!

Damned, Wolfbrigade
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Customer Ratings