Friday, May 21, 2010


finally the long awaited CALIFORNIA LOVE / GEHENNA split 7" surfaced here just in time to sweeten my "fuck-everything-mood"! very kind really! as you can see on the pics there are 2 versions of it around - the regular one on black wax and the one ltd. to 250 copies with the red cover on red wax that came with a GEHENNA live 12" and a copy of THE LOVE BELOW's REPRODUCTIVE RIGHTS 7" on colored wax. I know that a lot of people aren't really into this split 7" or even think it's weak... not that I would care about other people's opinions but I don't really understand why someone would think this split is weak cause the only negative thing I could say is that it has just one track from each band and therefore is rather short. besides that it is more or less what I expected it to be if not even a little better! CALIFORNIA LOVE's vocalist Aaron had told me before that their recordings would be shit but still OK as they'd be shit in a kind of early DEATH METAL demo way. well, I agree that there is a touch of DEATH METAL in their track called FEUERSTURM but I wouldn't say that the recording is shit or that they sound unbelievably different to their 2 12"es and I'm really looking forward to their farewell 7" with the other 8 tracks from that recording session that their guitarist will release (the 1st test presses were all fucked up). lyric-wise CALIFORNIA LOVE stick to the "we despise the human race" theme which is also nothing new in their case. sad but true Aaron also told me that CALIFORNIA LOVE split up. the GEHENNA track on the flip-side is called GET FUCKED UP and as it already had been available for download from Mr. Apocalypse's blog for a short time a while ago you might know the song anyway. as a matter of fact GEHENNA can do no wrong in my ears and therefore you might have assumed that this track is no exception and that I'm as much into it as I'm into all their stuff if you are frequently reading this blog or just have read what I wrote about GEHENNA in the past. in case you've made that assumption... guess what - it's 100% correct! that shouldn't really make you wonder as GEHENNA sound spiteful, vicious and ugly in their own unique way even though you can hear which bands have influenced them quite clearly.

actually the pic on the left doesn't show the real cover of the GEHENNA live 12" that came with the pre-order version of their split with CALIFORNIA LOVE, is ltd. to 250 copies and is called THE HOPE GUZZO BOOTLEG. sorry for that but the cover doesn't fit my scanner and as it's a photography it would have been too tricky to make multiple scans and cut & paste it together if I wouldn't have had the time to do that anyway plus you can also see the actual cover on the pic at the bottom. now, you get a regular live set recorded at Gilman St. on one side and a KXLU radio live show on the flip-side which is the better one in my opinion. truth be told I think that 99,99% of all live recordings suck so much that no one needs them and consider releasing them on any format a waste of resources! among the very rare exceptions would be the CITIZENS ARREST live 8" and their radio show, some of the LIFE'S BLOOD stuff that's around, POISON IDEA's DUTCH COURAGE, the GEHENNA / CATHARSIS split 12" and a few more including this one. someone once told me the the voice of GEHENNA's vocalist on the earlier mentioned split live 12" would sound like a demon from yelling at you and he doesn't sound so much different here. this is some of the rawest, ugliest and hostile music I've heard till now. if you can't get into GEHENNA or also if you just can't get into their live recordings - don't worry cause it might not be your fault. it most likely just might be the case that you lack the experience of crawling through the stench of urine and vomit in the darkest pits of human existence fighting tooth and claw to keep your sanity. anyway, let's move on to the artwork and packaging of the record. I admit that I felt a little disappointed for a moment when I held the physical copy in my hands for the 1st time. the cover a 12" x 24" sheet of thick paper folded in the middle and not a bag and comes with a small booklet that gives you a track-list and an interview but no lyrics but when I looked on the inside artwork I suddenly realized that the pic on the inside was the photography from the cover only inverted which they did on the split 7" artwork too - I guess that's called continuation and is considered to be a style of art. now, while I've already told you that the record is called THE HOPE GUZZO BOOTLEG I haven't told you why yet. in case you don't already know who Hope Guzzo is let me tell you that she's the photographer who took the pic that was used for the cover of this 12" plus she's the person interviewed in the booklet by GEHENNA. I should add that the introduction to the interview briefly explains why her art was used on the cover. as the ltd. pre-order packs are sold out by now I scanned the interview in case you missed it!

here's a pic of the THE LOVE BELOW's REPRODUCTIVE RIGHTS 7" I mentioned earlier. I'd give that 7" a 2nd try for the rad cover alone I guess...