Monday, July 6, 2009


Tooth & Nail Records - 2009

The Crucified, for those of you who have no idea, was one of the greatest hardcore/thrash/punk bands to ever grace the earth, and even better...they were singing about Jesus Christ, back in the days when both the music, and the message were far from the normal concert going experience!!! I have been a fan ever since the Self titled debut album on Pure Metal records (I think that was the label), back then Christian radio actually would play stuff like this, i know, its unheard of, right? Anyway, so I never got to see The Crucified, i started my annual trekking to Cornerstone Festival (The land of great concert opportunity) in 1994, a year after they had broken up, or were breaking up. I skipped 1995, and of course, the band decided that was a great time to play again...for the last time!!! UGH!!! So, here it is 2009, 25 years after the band had begun (1984) and to celebrate the work of this pioneering hardcore band, not only did the band get back together, to play EVERYWHERE BUT HERE...but Tooth & Nail decided to be cool again, and release something worth my time and my dime, the ENTIRE recorded work of The Crucified, remastered, some remixed, complete with a DVD to boot!!! Holy shit, this is great news!!! I will break down each disc...there are three...

Disc 1 - DEMOS

-KGB (1985)
Kids in Gods blessing? According to the booklet, that is what the band name, at the time, stood for. Cute!!! There are 10 tracks of really raw punk rock. The performance is tight, but you can tell the band is just getting started.

-Take Up Your Cross (1986)
Ok, 1 year later, the band is tighter, faster, and harder than before. Still a raw punk rock sound. Better production. Highlights here: Silent Scream, Seal Number Four, Directed Youth, Washed Out/Apathy demo, Freedom

-Nailed (1987)
Another year, and another step towards harder, faster, punk rock. This demo sounds, production wise, like a step backward, but the songs on here are much better. This demo is much shorter too, which is too bad because every song kicks ass.
Highlights: All 7 songs

- Live At The New Order (1989)
Like all of these releases, this was originally a 7 song demo, displaying live versions of the songs, mostly from the Nailed release. The sound quality for 1989, and for punk rock, is supurb! The performance makes me jealous i was not there when it all went down. A good preview of what the band was like in those glorious late 80s!!
Highlights: Conviction/Seal Number Four, Death To Death

-Ocean Records Demos (1993)
So, there were 2 songs that survived the break up of the Crucified, songs that were, separated and released on compilations in the early 90s, and were supposedly the scraps of an attempted 3rd album recording. The cd booklet for this box set states that the band found themselves struggling to continue writing a new album, and that was why they ended the band. Honestly, im suspicious that there were darker, personal reasons left out of this collections commentary, but for what its worth, these 2 songs are the best the band ever sounded, in production and song writing, and i find it really hard to believe the band could not take a year or so, and write 8 more that sound like these!!! Its a DAMN SHAME, Power Of God is one of the best hardcore songs ever put to tape!!!!! The remixing of the songs also made this a enjoyable listen. But more on remixing, later...
Highlights" both songs, Power Of God, and Straining Life.

Disc 2 - ALBUMS

- The Crucified (1989)
Ahh yes, the crushing debut full length that took a giant step into thrash metal territory. Thank God they did, this stuff kills. This album always bring back memories of my youth, rocking out, air guitar playing, to this "tape". My only gripe with this album is the production has too much high end, and not enough bass guitar in the mix. I was hoping they would (could) remix this, and although we do get a great remaster job here, the mix is the same. I will assume it was out of the bands hands, or the tapes were not in good condition, or perhaps the band just doesn't have them?!?! Who knows...who cares.
Highlights: The whole record, not a bad song!!!

- The Pillars Of Humanity (1991)
The pummeling last record by this great band, displayed here, remixed, remastered, and sounding better than ever. The production suffered all these years, and there was so much more offered than we realized, now hearing the drums and bass so much better, as well as Marks voice loud and clear in the mix! The songs on this album are absolutely crushing, and they have the best breakdowns. The guys perform their asses off. The lyrics are pretty good too, considering the times. OMG, seriously people if you are fans of old school hardcore and thrash, you will absolutely love this album. Its my fave Crucified album by far, and it gets better as it goes.
Highlights: The whole frickin cd!!!!

Disc 3 - DVD

The 3rd and final disc, is a dvd featuring nearly two hours of never before seen footage (20+ songs from various live shows, behind the scenes footage from 1987 to 1992, and more) Having not seen the band, and youtube lacking any real footage, this was a HUGE deal to me. The quality is great, and there is a bunch of funny tour footage. I especially loved the footage of Jeff pumping gas, with the bands manager, both acting like rednecks. Hilarious!!! I also loved the footage of the band hanging out at WORD records headquarters!!! There is also footage of Mark singing, with a full head of hair, which took me by surprise. I don't know, this is a lot of Crucified, wrapped up in a tight package, for very little money, and it is highly worth your dime, so go pick it up and support one of the last great Christian bands, and who knows, maybe they will keep going and give us that 3rd album we have all hoped for, afterall!!!

Scaterd Few, its your turn!!!

1 comment:

Matt DeBenedictis said...

ind of surprising the notes aren't so clear on the break up when Mark has been so vividly clear with talks of drugs and hating one another he has had printed. I need to get this, but I must wait for a smaller price as all I want is the Pillar years remastered. I actually loathed the punk stuff.