|Photo stolen from Brushback|
One of the best things about any underground music scene is the camaraderie that can form between people who participate in it, whether as fans, musicians or a little bit of both. The members of Iron Hand, who formed in 2008, had all done time in the underground loud music scene as musicians, DJs and bookers. They got together with the simple goal of creating music together; in fact, they wanted to play a certain type of music together.
“We just wanted to be an unrelenting straightforward crust/d-beat band. No frills, no bullshit, what we do is what we do,” said vocalist Brian F. They blend together different facets of the crust punk sound, from varying countries, to create a vicious beast.
The original line-up of the band featured Ryan G. and Brian P. on guitar, as well as Shane and Paul, now of Oiltanker, on drums and bass respectively. This version of the band went on to record a well received demo, before Oiltanker got rolling and Shane and Paul left amicably, due to their other band commitments, and Stefan (bass) and Ross (drums) joined the band in the summer of 2009.
The band gigged regularly playing out as much as they could. This month they released their debut 7”, a blistering burn of raw punk energy entitled “Usurper Divine”, on Redscroll Records, which is slowly becoming a local taste maker among indie labels (Remember, they were the first ones to put out Ipsissimus). Over the course of four tracks, the band lays down a mean sound sealing their credentials as one of the better bands trolling Connecticut’s loud music scene.
Originally, the band was given several options for their debut record on all formats. Brian F said there was even talk of doing a one sided twelve inch, because they had six originals and one cover, but they decided to go with the 7” format, partly out of necessity, and partly out of tradition.
“This was something that made sense to us because the 7” tends to be the preferred format for crust punk bands. It works in all facets. We decided to put something straightforward out,” said Brian F.
But this isn’t the only Iron Hand recording that will be released this year. In June, Safety Meeting Records, will put out another 7” entitled “Liquid Assets” that will feature the remaining songs not featured on “Usurper Divine”. In a bold stroke of luck, Brian F. said that label head Carlos Wells contacted them and was interested in working with the band. They wouldn’t have to change anything, they would just be themselves. Brian F. said he is honored to also be on Safety Meeting Records due to their diverse roster and commitment to excellence in local music.
Even though, recently Brian F. relocated to Massachusetts for work, while the rest of the band is still located in Connecticut, that hasn’t slowed the band down. In fact due to the advancement of technology, Brian F. is able to stay connected with the band.
The band can come up with the music and send the song to Brian via e-mail, then he can add his vocals to the mix and they have a song. It’s an instance where computers are really helping people create music. When they need to do a show, he’ll come down they’ll take a day or two practice and they are all set to go.
And he has nothing for fondness and appreciation for the state he just left, speaking particularly well of a certain house in Hartford that has been one of the shining stars in underground music for the state. But he also mentions there are cool places and people doing things all around the state, even up where he’s relocated there are a-lot of cool DIY places to play.
So, check them out when they play, if you want one healthy dose of crust punk action, and also watch how the power of friendship and camaraderie can come together to form something that transcends distances.
Check them out Friday, May 13th at Popeye's Garage, New Haven CT with Misanthropic Noise, Stone Titan, and Gowl.