Comprised of members of Swedish screamo / hardcore bands Barabbas, du förtappade and Kid, Feral, powerviolence crew COMMUNAL VIOLENCE takes no prisoners. On their new debut release “Consciousness of Error” (available on tapes via No Time Records), the Stockholm, Skövde and Uppsala based quartet waves the ferocious powerviolence banner with a hint of groove and uncompromising grindcore delivery, serving up an end result that’s wild, brutal, punchy, and extremely listenable. We have teamed up to give you a closer look at their work, with special track by track commentary from each member’s perspective.
Comments COMMUNAL VIOLENCE’s vocalist Marta Głudkowska: “The original idea for the band came up in Russia during our two other bands’ tour (Barabbas, du förtappade and Kid, Feral). I (Marta) remember asking Jesper if he wants to play powerviolence in our van before the show where we were both warming up our voices to do some features. Another day we talked with Seva that we wanna play some fast and aggressive heavy stuff. After getting back home we two were pretty decided on it but thought Jesper wasn’t being serious. Turns out he was and the missing piece was a guitarist. We thought we would ask our friend Jack, although he lives in Uppsala, but is a super good musician (go here for his solo tunes). He was excited to join us as we stated early that we plan to be a ”chilled and not super productive” band. Recording of the debut release took place during the second full band rehearsal so I guess our statements are not to be trusted…”
Asked about the recording process, as well as distribution plans, Marta continued: “As aforementioned, we wrote all the songs online by sending the tracks to and fro, then rehearsing them all when we would finally meet. Some were rehearsed for the first time the same weekend we recorded the album. The process turned out in ten intense songs based on reactions to everyday life, its disappointment and misunderstandings. They move from anger to sorrow. It is a dark and relentless cry that never stops. Mixing done by Samuel (Skoog, plays in Panhandler) added that roughness we wanted in it, he did some really cool job with analogue gear there.
Putting the album out has been a ride though… At first we thought we got everything pretty quickly, the great people from great labels were (still are) with us. Unfortunately, due to difficulties the vinyl release couldn’t be finalized so, after a long wait, we decided to push a limited edition of tapes via No Time Records and a digital release. We also need to mention the amazing artist Johnny, who made all our artwork for this album and also our merch. Seva noticed his works at one of the Art School students’ market. If you wanna check him out – go here.”
𝐼𝑡 𝑖𝑠 𝑑𝑖𝑓𝑓𝑖𝑐𝑢𝑙𝑡 𝑡𝑜 𝑡𝑎𝑙𝑘 𝑎𝑏𝑜𝑢𝑡 𝑎𝑛𝑦 𝑝𝑙𝑎𝑛𝑠 𝑟𝑒𝑎𝑙𝑙𝑦, 𝑤𝑖𝑡ℎ 𝑡ℎ𝑒 𝐶𝑜𝑣𝑖𝑑-𝑝𝑎𝑛𝑑𝑒𝑚𝑖𝑐 𝑠𝑡𝑖𝑙𝑙 𝑔𝑜𝑖𝑛𝑔 𝑜𝑛.
“Since we started last year we managed to play two shows in Stockholm and, just days before the European lock-down we managed to play in Helsinki and a few days earlier a See You Next Summer fest in Copenhagen, which were least to say amazing. All other plans are postponed and we are totally okay with that, there are way more important things going on around us. We hope everyone is being safe and doesn’t tour this summer. We are just awaiting the vaccine like crazy!
We are writing new tunes though. We actually have been ever since we got the 10 songs for the album. It just never stops.”
𝐴 𝑙𝑜𝑡 𝑐𝑜𝑢𝑙𝑑 𝑏𝑒 𝑠𝑎𝑖𝑑 𝑎𝑏𝑜𝑢𝑡 𝑝𝑜𝑙𝑖𝑡𝑖𝑐𝑎𝑙 𝑎𝑛𝑑 𝑠𝑜𝑐𝑖𝑎𝑙 𝑡𝑜𝑝𝑖𝑐𝑠 𝑡ℎ𝑎𝑡 2020 ℎ𝑎𝑣𝑒 𝑠𝑒𝑟𝑣𝑒𝑑 𝑠𝑜 𝑓𝑎𝑟.
“We have Covid-19, we have police brutality against POC, we have Polish president with his party stating that LGBT is an ideology and not only that but also a dangerous one, as dangerous as communism (sic!). A lot is going on, a lot is making us sad and irritated and it is definitely scary. We can say though that we are really surprised about how many ”public” people took their stance on these topics and that they became loud and clear! (for example in Poland, for the first time afaik calling black people ”murzyn” has been questioned, which I feel has been LONG overdue!!!!). Another positive is a way bigger availability of free, public culture because of the pandemic. I am aware that this might not be a thing everywhere so it’s a small small plus in the ocean of minuses (and we live in Sweden where there never was a real national lockdown!).
Hopefully the times makes people reach for books and other forms of education about social processes and the Covid-19 teenagers will be the next, active and ready to revolt generation.”
Jack: I think that this is the song that I contributed the least to in regards of writing, but it’s still very special in my opinion because it’s the only song that is written around the drums, while all the other songs are either written around guitar parts or bass parts that me or Seva came up with. Perfect opening and the breakdown at the end always get me pumped!
Jesper: I wanted to make a ”album intro” and improvised some drum parts that Seva later put bass over and then it was pretty cool.
Marta: I couldn’t really match any text to this song until the very end, and on the weekend when we would record the album I begged Seva to write something for it. Funnily enough, a few days later I found Morris’ book “Can the subaltern speak?” on sale at my university’s bookstore. Bought immediately.
Seva: I think this is the only time that I’ve written a song based on drums instead of matching drums to an riff or a bass pattern. But the drums were written in such an intro-friendly fashion, I just immediately heard the powerviolence-style bass over it.
Ja: This song always makes me smile since it is the song that brings me back to this band’s first rehearsal. We had written everything online, and everyone had practised on their own. And when we would finally have our first rehearsal this was the first song we would play. I remember I thought that we would barely make it through the first part before we would have to stop and figure something out. What happened instead was that we played the song, start to finish no different than it sounds today. For me that was an incredible moment that really set the tone for how we would come to do everything related to the band.
Je: It’s super hard to blast slowly but I think I did ok.
M: This is probably the oldest lyrics I have ever written and originally I imagined it to be a screamo song. It’s about exploitation of people and animals, about people who think the order of the world we live in has been somewhat established a million years ago and it just ”has to be this way”, blaming this world’s order instead of reflecting upon oneself and taking action, about trying to understand their lines of thought. I was like “yeah… this fits”.
S: The first song we wrote together, this one completely online. I wrote the bass part and sent it to the others on Messenger and I don’t think that we even changed anything in the end. I remember that I was blown away by the drums when Jesper sent a phone recording on our chat group. Right there, I thought “fuck, this band is going to be good”.
3. Born Evil
Ja: I think everyone else is mad at me for writing this song, haha.
Je: This song was and still is a pain in the ass. But it’s pretty good
M: Yea a song about the late GenY/GenZ that didn’t learn their history and didn’t listen to the elder’s experiences.
S: Jack wrote this song and it was very mathy at first with a lot of stuff happening that I couldn’t figure out. It’s kind of strange that it became the shortest song on the record, now that I think about it.
4. Sulcus Social Perception
Ja: I really love the vocals and the drums in this song. It is definitely one of the funnier ones to play live, both because of the moshpit ending, and the way the backup vocals go together with the guitar I’m playing at the same time making this part one of the most difficult for me to play.
Je: Song of never ending syncopes.
S: I was laughing my ass off when we first came up with the tempo drop and the “breakdown” at the end of the song. Everytime I listen to it now I just wish we’d do it even slower. But that’s what live shows are for. Very pleased with seeing some mosh to this shit.
M: It was supposed to be named “Stranger” as a direct reference to Camus, but Johnny, who did our artwork came up with some mock-titles for our album and we loved this one! It also suits the song really well, as the text is basically trying to explain the feeling of social anxiety when not being able to understand and read other people, thus over analyzing and making not-the-best decisions. This is something I don’t mention too often so writing this song is kind of coming-out for me about this. The ending, like “what’s your point?” works just SO GOOD with this song. And it was so, so difficult to get in with vocals on the right moment, I still weep with despair when I think about trying to make it work.
Ja: When I wrote this song I had an idea of how (I thought) Jesper, Seva and Marta would write each others elements of the song around the guitar parts, but all my predictions were wrong. The end result was something completely else but so much better than I could ever imagine. I think that is really the charm with letting everyone write their own parts. You can really change the feel of a song quickly if, for example, the drums are completely different from what you first expected them to sound when you wrote the song.
Je: This song has a shut the fuck up riff at the end which i like alot.
M: Ah that one, a sick song. It’s about mental health. Stop pitying. Things happen.
S: Classic Jack song for me. Very smart, fast and so good. I wish I’d be able to play it good enough while losing my shit.
6. Lowkey Dying
Ja: I always think about how Seva once told me very excited how “Lowkey Dying is the song that looks the best”. When we recorded this song we really tried to play this song as fast as we could, and it is a song that only becomes faster and faster every time we play it.
Je: I always confuse this song with Bonemeal.
M: It’s an embarrassing song about a crush I had a few years ago. But on a more serious note, it’s about how it feels to meet new people, pretty simple. I kind of wish I could focus more on music while playing it live cause everyone says it looks sick…..
S: This is the song that looks the most powerviolence when played. The chords are all over the neck. I always think it that it probably looks much cooler and harder than it is. That’s half the point of powerviolence though. Also, the title is hilarious.
7. Kommunal Well-being
Ja: I love to play this song, so many fun riffs. I love the triplet part.
Je: Marta sounds like metal dragged against asphalt on this song and that’s cool.
M: This is my favourite song!! I could write about it for hours so I will just cut it down asap to one point: it is about liberals and neo-liberalism.
S: I think this is the most death metal-inspired song on this record. I already know it will be more stuff like this in the future.
8. Apostasy Concussion
Ja: This is my favorite song of ours to this day. It’s a Seva classic! I love his way of writing music, it’s almost like he invents his own 12 tone systems for composing, each riff heavier than the last one. I think the “Sensations overrun the sensible mind..” is the peak best vocal part on the album.
Je: Peak Seva.
M: So it’s about breaking the habit/religion/ed. The ending is pretty sick, I barely succeeded to pronounce all the words.
S: Everybody tells me that I write in weird scales. Well, here you go. I love how well the drums and vox works with the parts throughout the whole song.
Ja: I always screw up this intro live because it is sooo fast. Really one of the most intense songs to play live. It sounds cool, too.
Je: This song has D-beat!!!!!!
M: It’s yet another song trying to portrait the feeling of not understanding people with other values. I remember writing it on a bus back from work while listening to the really bad recorded demo, trying to make out the beats. I’m also a fan of my boys’ vocals in it.
S: I think that the feedback “part” (being as long as the actual song, if not longer?) was my idea and I’m glad we did it. It’s an obvious Weekend Nachos rip-off but why not. When we recorded the record, bass was the last thing we did. It was a sunday, we were in our rehearsal space the whole day and I had to get up to work the day after. Being so tired I actually cheated on the last blastbeat part and skipped tremolo. I’m glad I did so that I don’t have to do it live!
Ja: I think this is the song we struggled the most with getting exactly right on rehearsal. For some reason the accents were very hard to get right. It started with Sevas bass part which was for me very hard to write riffs around. But I’m really satisfied with some of the riffs on this song, like the very atonal riff 0:38 and of course the ending of the song, which is one of the funniest parts to play live, trying our hardest to sync our ritardando and accelerando.
Je: This is a weird one but I like it alot.
M: I couldn’t get the rhythm of this for the life of me. It turned out quite alright. It’s an answer to a suicide letter. I played a lot of Morrowind at the time it happened, specifically Tribunal so the title came very naturally. Ah, the city of light, the city of magic!
S: This song was written based on the bass alone and it mindfucked me because we changed it just slightly. The banana-style tempo changes towards the end is very fun to play.