Hummingbird of Death – Forbidden Techniques (2017) REVIEW

With twenty four zippity thrashcore songs in twenty five minutes ‘Forbidden Techniques’ was too much for this relatively old man’s blood pressure. My brain was about to pop out of my skull as the four minute closer “Only You Can Go Fuck Yourself” provided the orgasm necessary to prevent aneurysm. That isn’t to say this is some kind of pornographic cybergrind album, rather it is in the tradition of fastcore wieners like What Happens Next?, Capitalist Casualties and Ripcord but with grind/crossover influences that create a earwax-melting claustrophobic hardcore sound not too far removed from bands like Impulse Manslaughter and/or a more aggressive Scholastic Deth. Hummingbird of Death stands out among most bands with the fastcore label though, at least the popular ones. They’ve got such a weighty pair of balls that if they got any heavier this’d be powerviolence or a damn Benümb record.

I don’t really listen to a ton of punk related stuff past 1994 that isn’t crossover so… excuse my ignorance of the last 23 years of whatever. So when I mention Ripcord and Capitalist Casulaties I think this is pretty damn close in terms of intensity, sheer throttled hardcore punk with some thrash and grindcore kicks on the drums a la the first Wehrmacht album. It takes me back to falling in love with crossover and finding bands right on the fringe of taking their hardcore sound into grind yet still unwilling to barf into a microphone like Lee Dorrian. Somehow this doesn’t end up sounding like an embarrassing retro nerd fest and Hummingbird of Death don’t take themselves seriously at all. It feels great to let a solid half hour of easy-breezy ‘Forbidden Techniques’ hardcore zip by on repeat.

The appeal of this type of record is sort of their reductive nature. Modern hardcore and thrashcore can summarize the 80’s and 90’s in less than an hour through sheer speed and variation. Cryptic Slaughter‘s first record basically sums up the 80’s hardcore movement at double speed in less than 31 minutes and ‘Forbidden Techniques’ is more or less in that same tradition at even higher speeds and covering a larger swathe of interests. For all of its relentless speed and hi-brow meme humor the album has a ton of charm and spins pretty well on repeat. Whatever, it’s well worth the 25 minutes you’ll spend with it.


Artist Hummingbird of Death
Type Album
Released December 1, 2017
 BUY/LISTEN on their Bandcamp!  Follow Hummingbird of Death on Facebook
Hardcore Punk, Thrashcore, Crossover Thrash

Everything’s coming up Milhouse. 3.75/5.0

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