If someone says that musicians should “stick to playing music and keep politics out of it” then turn around, tell them to go fuck themselves and kick them into traffic because they don’t have a fucking clue what they’re talking about. Music has and always will be a tool for every generation to have their say. Punk in the 70’s. Grind and hardcore in the 80’s and 90’s. These are genres of music that blossomed because young, pissed off people felt that performing music was the best chance of having their voices heard. I recently attended a Napalm Death show and between songs Barney Greenway took his time in letting the audience know what the tracks stood for; gender inequality, racism and unchecked corporate greed among others. These are just as present now as they were when Scum released in 1987. Some things change but grind is still as hostile and disheartened as ever. Thirty years hasn’t changed Greenway and company, why should this current generation feel any different?
This edition of Grind My Gears belongs to an upcoming compilation with a more than deliberate message. A glance at the artwork should give you a clue as to what that message is. Some publications and blogs keep their cards pretty close to their chest when it comes to the burning issue of the day. We don’t. That’s why I’m using my space here to help promote an upcoming compilation from newly founded label Posers Inc. Grind Against Trump won’t solve any of these issues overnight but it’s a start. This compilation of grind, violence and ‘core stands for something when most are content with simply sitting and playing the voyeur. Organiser and label founder Benjamin James took some time out from his day to day life to answer a few questions about the compilation, who it will benefit and why it is a necessary step.
Tell us a little bit about yourself first and foremost?
My name is Ben and I’m 22 years old. I live in the Quad Cities, which is in Iowa and Illinois. I have 3 wonderful ferrets and a girlfriend of almost 4 years who helps keep my head up. I’m a full time nerd and collector of many things like; tapes, records, VHS, toys, comics, and band merch. When I’m not pushing my thick rimmed glasses to my forehead, I’m teaching preschoolers and fronting a metalcore band, Artorias. I’m involved as much as I can be in my community and local DIY scene, from promoting shows to bringing awareness to the injustices people in our own neighborhoods face every day. This recently inspired me to start a label called, Posers Inc. Which is what brought me to Grind Against Trump.
Why Grind Against Trump?
Grind Against Trump is the first (cassette) release for my label, Posers Inc. It’s a benefit comp that features 25 grindcore/powerviolence bands who either in their songs, or by their presence on the comp, are stating that, Trump, his cabinet, and the fact that his presidency has made it more comfortable for neo Nazis to show their faces, is not going to be tolerated, EVER! 70% of the proceeds will be donated to SPLC (Southern Poverty Law Center) to combat the rise of hate groups across the country.
How necessary do you feel that actions like this are, specifically to combat the rise of the kind of hate we see everywhere today?
I feel actions like these are absolutely necessary, but are also not enough. This sort of thing mainly helps organize people, which is the first and one of the most crucial steps to literally sticking your foot in the far right’s mouth. Music scenes are a place where political opinions are expressed all the time. People may not like it, but politics are just a part of music, it’s how it is. The far right has tried to make their way into DIY for years, specifically metal and punk. We have forced them out before and we will do it again, guaranteed. This comp will show who is ready to step up and fight. Unfortunately, these battles are not won with words and never will be. When the media wants to normalize white supremacy and refuses to acknowledge the “Alt-Right” as neo-Nazis, then we have a big problem on our hands. Your oppressors will try to kill you, regardless, which is why we need to step up and keep swinging. If they take us down, they will take us down in a bloody mess.
Grind Against Trump is available for preorder and you can find Posers Inc on Facebook and get them supported. SPLC is just one small charity with a big goal but every purchase goes a long way toward helping stamp out the kind of knuckle dragging hatred that the right has always been associated with. Similar to Anal Trump (Cattle Decapitation‘s Travis Ryan doing his best to help people affected by the Drumpf’s regime), this compilation is for the benefit of those affected by things that people like myself only have to witness at arms length. The right exist in Scotland and the UK, of course, but the US has a teeming cesspool of the type of folk who think that they deserve more than someone else with a different hue of skin. My brothers and sisters in grind across the world are all pointing their middle fingers straight at that orange faced prick and the cock eyed followers he has accrued. Help us help those who are being marginalised.
Here’s a full list of the acts involved in this compilation. If anything you’re gonna get some killer tunes from some Heavy Blog favourites.
To The Point