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Bloodstains - Bloodstains (self-released)

7 March 2024

After their 3-song 2020 demo and a 3-song 7” in 2023, Santa Ana, CA’s Bloodstains are back with their first full Lp and it’s an absolute corker! While those looking for a reinvention of the wheel should maybe look elsewhere, they play this style of melodic yet raw early ‘80s style Southern California hardcore with such incredible feeling, passion, and a rage inherent in having something to say that it simply demands to be heard. Just read the lyrics to “Public Hanging” or “Nuclear Age,” to name a few, to confirm that this is a band that lives in the here and now.

Only 4 of the songs are exclusive to this Lp as “Anti-Social” was the A-side of their 7” and also appeared on the demo and there are also a few other songs (“Public Hanging” and “Nuclear Age,” two of their best) that are re-recorded from their previous demo versions, too. All of that doesn’t matter much, though, as it flows incredibly well, leading things off with the ‘80s style instrumental “The Last Rites” that makes this reviewer think of lots of classic ‘80s intros by everyone from Descendents to Bad Brains and Warzone, going straight into the aforementioned “Public Hanging.” And after 8 songs, it’s all over, so of course it demands to be played again. And again.

Simply put, if you like early ‘80s Southern California hardcore punk along the lines of D.I., Rikk Agnew’s solo Lp All by Myself, Adolescents, and their namesake Agent Orange, this is an absolute must!