Straight Edge Hardcore as a Unifying Force, with MODERN GUILT

5 mins read

Crank up the volume ’cause we’re diving deep into the pulsating heart of the beautiful city of Gothenburg, Sweden, where MODERN GUILT is resurrecting the hardcore spirit of the ’80s with a fierce, no-holds-barred attitude. These folks are wielding their six-strings like battle axes in the war against apathy, using the sharp edges of Straight Edge to carve out a space where everyone’s invited but nobody’s coerced. And guess what? They’re doing all this with wide smiles plastered across their faces and a posi attitude that’s infectious as hell.

MODERN GUILT’s sound slaps you with nostalgia yet feels fresh as a solid jab in a mosh. Think UNIFORM CHOICE meets SSD, with a sprinkle of YOUTH OF TODAY, all mashed up in a blender that’s been to hell and back, set to the tune of melodic chaos. It’s like stepping into a time machine, only the flux capacitor is powered by sheer adrenaline and a touch of modern melodic sense.

The crew? A lineup that reads like a who’s who of Swedish hardcore royalty: with ties to SUBJECT TO CHANGE, DIVISION OF LAURA LEE, ANCHOR, PABLO MATISSE, and OUT OF VOGUE, these cats bring decades of sweat and riffs to the table. And while they’re all about that edge life, they’re not above chilling with some cartoons and chomping on vegetarian delights—just a day in the life!

Their first demo, “1000 Miles,” dropped like a bomb on March 31, 2024, and if you blinked, you missed it because that limited edition with the PEANUTS gang flew off the shelves faster than free drinks at a punk show. Spoiler alert: there was no Snoopy on the cover, but the vibe? Totally there.


Now, before we sneak peek into an interview with the vocal powerhouse Peter Bader, here’s the scoop: MODERN GUILT is a unity gig, a shout-out to the scene that says, “Hey, let’s make a difference, together.” Whether it’s rallying against global injustices or championing personal empowerment without the haze of substances, these folks are on a mission to ignite minds and stages alike.

Interview with Peter Bader from Modern Guilt

Could you give us some insight into Modern Guilt and your sound?

Modern guilt is: Peter Bader – Vocals, Thomas Lundin – Bass, Mattias Rasmusson – Drums- Should be referred to as ”Matte Edge”, Per Stålberg – Guitar.

All members have been in bands since the mid 90’s to this day. Me and Thomas was in Eyes shut, Subject to change and The Change (who released an album on Porcells label FFWF rec.) Per is in Division of Laura Lee and Pablo Matisse and Mattias was in Anchor and we are currently both in Sharp tongues who are about to put our a record on New age Records.

Modern Guilt is all about channeling that raw, ’80s hardcore energy while infusing it with our own twist. We’re blending that early 80s west coast vibe with post 88 youth crew. Adding some Bad Religion influences melodies here and there.


Your passion for the genre is evident. What prompted you to start Modern Guilt, and what role does the straight edge philosophy play in your music?

P: One of the main reasons for starting Modern Guilt was to make a band with a Straight edge message, It’s been years since we did that, but SXE have always been very important to me. And there’s always been this underlying desire to create a straightforward, ’80s-sounding edge band, so when the opportunity arose, I jumped at it. With Thomas and Mattias on board, we had the perfect lineup to bring that vision to life. The only challenge has been getting our guitarist, Per, back on the straight edge path. So obviously we are an edge band with an edge member short… But, since we are serious with the straight edge mission we took on Per to support him back on the right path… one punk at a time (haha)

Tell us about your first release 1000 miles.

P: “1000 Miles” is our first demo, recorded in a burst of creative energy within our first few months as a band. The idea of the recording was actually to be a pre-production of our recording, but we decided to just put it out. I think it channels the band in a really truthful way. We wanted to do something fun with it so we released it on a limited cassette, featuring an (unauthorized) “Peanuts & Friends” collaboration. It sold out within hours so that was fun!


Tell us more about the message of MG?

I: Hardcore music isn’t just about the music—it’s a catalyst for positive change. It’s a platform where everyone’s voice is heard, where we can address issues that may not have had a spotlight before. For us, that platform revolves around straight edge. In a world where drugs and alcohol are used as pacifiers to keep people in line we think it’s more important than ever to resist, speak up and not to stand in line.

You mentioned the importance of straight edge in your life. Can you elaborate?

P: Straight edge has been a constant companion for over half of my life. It’s guided me through the ups and downs, especially during my years touring with bands. Having a clear mind allowed me to navigate through difficult situations and support those who needed it. Plus, it’s connected me with like-minded individuals across the globe, fostering a sense of unity and purpose.

And in my eyes drugs and alcohol can numb the mind and stifle creativity, straight edge serves as a beacon of clarity and empowerment. I know that there are people who use drugs to boost creativity. It might work at first but in the end it too often leads to destruction. We have several extremely talented friend and close ones who through the years lost their creativity and sometimes even their lives as a result to substance abuse.


Straight edge can be positive, don’t you believe it has the potential for negative impact?

I: Absolutely. Like any movement, when taken to extremes, straight edge can become exclusionary and divisive. It’s essential to maintain a balance and ensure that it remains a force for inclusivity and positivity. Unfortunately, some bands or people will always use straight edge, to portray an elite or set themselves higher than others leading to negative perceptions and cracks within the community.

Are there any bands you admire for their positive portrayal of straight edge?

P: Bands like Minor Threat and Youth of Today have always been beacons of positivity within the straight edge community, using it as a force for empowerment and social change.

As mentioned, with Modern Guilt we take it one step further as we are a straight edge band with one non edge member – I’d also like to elevate the bands role as a support system for individuals who have struggled with the straight edge lifestyle. We have humorously dubbed the band to the ”Modern Guilt SXE Rehab for people with Edge tattoos” (Haha)

Thank you, for sharing your insights. We’re excited to see where Modern Guilt goes from here.

P: Thank you for having me. And thank you for everything you’re doing for punk & hardcore and your constant dedication!

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