For the first time in a long time, Houston's hardcore punk scene is thriving. Maybe it's just a part of the wave of hardcore revivalists around the country, but then Houston has never been trendy. What we have here, though, is a burgeoning scene in and of itself, formed through the grassroots efforts of its members. That's pretty commendable.
2014 doesn't seem to be letting up at all. In fact, the scene just seems to keep growing and now Houston is drawing in more and more major-label and legendary hardcore acts to play at places like Fitzgerald's and Walters with each passing month. Here are some of the great local names you might encounter at those shows, and who you should be watching as the year goes on.
Die Young (TX) As Rocks Off's Nathan Smith elaborated on in his review of their December return at 2013's Fallcore hardcore festival, Die Young (TX) made their first appearance in four years and stunned the audience with ferocity and precision. Now that they're back to decimate, with a brand-new record on the way. In the meantime, get caught up on their fantastic previous releases on their Bandcamp page.
Back to Back Rocks Off previously profiled Back to Back's bassist Hank Doyle for our Rocks Off 200 series, and 2014 promises to be a big year for him and his band.
They've already got shows scheduled around Texas and are slowly bubbling up to the surface of Houston's hardcore scene. In particular, they'll be joining hardcore punk legends Fucked Up at Fitzgerald's on January 26th and you'd be a fool to miss that one. Back to Back also recently released a brand new single on Soundcloud.
Bastard Cult Another great up-and-coming hardcore band here, Bastard Cult is also opening that Fucked Up show at Fitzgerald's. The lineup features a alumni of a litany of Houston bands over the years, making them the local hardcore equivalent of a rock supergroup. Their first EP, Burning..., came out last year and I'm sure it won't be long before we hear from these hellraisers again.
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Zimmerman's Gun Hot off the presses, Zimmerman's Gun just finished up their first recordings and threw their first EP up on Bandcamp this month. However, you might already know of them if you've been to shows lately. By all accounts, they've been wowing audiences at every gig they've played. This EP was pretty highly anticipated for me, and I'm sure they're going to continue to kick ass for the remainder of the year.
List continues on the next page.
Forced FEM One of my personal highlights of this past year's Free Press Summer Fest was getting there early enough to see Forced FEM tear down the house. They recently released a split with another exciting band in the scene, Black Coffee, and they have some awesome tracks now available for streaming on Bandcamp.
Cop Warmth These guys have been members of the scene for a good long time now and I've been a fan for a while. It's been a good minute since they put any new music out for us, though.
All that changes in 2014, as Cop Warmth has confirmed via Facebook that they've been recording for a new tape called Womanizer to be released shortly. They've also been hopping some great bills with other great hardcore bands here in Houston. Review their old stuff on their Bandcamp.
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