Everyone’s favorite Swedish anarcho-punks Svarteskerm are back with an ep filled with all sort of raw punk rock chaos.
When I last reviewed the Svarteskerm discography, I learned that they are Swedish and nearly everything I can find on them is in Swedish as well, which complicates doing things like reviews, but given that they’re primarily an anti-capitalist punk rock outfit, that probably doesn’t matter much as you get the idea. Things haven’t changed in terms of information on the band but they’ve apparently been around nearly 10 years and the guys at ZAP Records thought the world should hear the brilliance of the band. The discography had songs from 2014 and earlier, but the band has just released a new 4 song ep.
From the very beginning of the loud, raw drum beat one gets the idea that this will be essentially a live, in-your-face punk track and you’d be right. The vocals are shouted over the top of the driving rhythms and get rougher and more ragged as the song relentlessly plows on. The song Diognetus itself is largely about being not at home in the world today given its current state (thanks google translate) and ends with some feedback and spoken words.
“Inte alla män” (Not all men) switches things up a bit at least in the vocal department, featuring female vocals by possibly more than one woman that mostly barked out in a rhythmic cadence that with the band roaring along gets one head bobbing. Partway through there’s a section where the bass takes over and drives things along with the vocals spoken over the top and building into full of emotion screaming in a song largely about how women are mistreated.
“Psykbryt” is one of those songs where google translate fails me and I can’t even begin to make sense out of what the lyrics might be, but musically, the song start out with a wailing guitar note and settles into a bit of rough groove. Gang vocals take the lead here with a number of people shouting them out in unison and despite the rough production/mixing/recording, the multiple voices are clear in the mix and this song perfectly conveys the feeling of a live band giving it all on stage in a small, perhaps somewhat seedy punk rock club.
“Du din djävul behöver Jesus” as one might guess is about needing Jesus. The song starts out with a surprisingly cleanly recorded fast guitar riff but that is short-lived as when the drums come in the clean production sound is gone in favor of the noisy live feel on the rest of the ep. Multiple vocalist take parts of the verses and most appear to join in for gang chorus parts as the song bounces along in what sounds like a great time.
Svarteskerm is one of those punk bands that simply delivers some great, catchy raw songs. All the songs on this ep embody the punk rock spirit and literally takes the listener to the dive bar where these songs would be most at home. From the overall tone, the band sounds like they’re having a great time and the performances are done with a sense of conviction. This is a band I would love to see in a live setting…
Written by John Jackson
Haga – Sträng instrumentalist och kör (guitars, bass)
Elof: Skrik och stämband (vocals)
Ola: Trummhinnor (drums)
Samuel: Skrål, gura
Release Date: 16th August 2019
Record Label: ZAP Records, 2019
“Dawn Of The Dread” (2018) [review]
“Illojala Till Slutet” (ep) (2019)