I’ve lived in Brooklyn for about a year now, and as you might imagine, it’s not exactly Malibu. It’s kinda dirty, people are loud, and a strong wind often carries the stank of rotting garbage. But you know what? It’s real. It’s rough around the edges, and its residents have the courage to celebrate that because they recognize the beauty in authenticity.

The same is true when it comes to Swine, the strong debut EP from my neighbors in the Bronx, Crippled Earn. The guitars have a consistently coarse texture, as do the aggressive vocals, bringing a sense of angry, gritty urgency to the forefront of the listening experience. And yet beneath it all, we find an all-too-real human heart, as the lyrics depict a wounded, jaded speaker whose violent impulse against the world stems from the deep pain and frustration of living with himself. “You’re the only human I despise more than myself,” the vocalist growl-sings in the second track.

Even more surprising is that there is a certain catchiness to the EP. This is especially true of “Disappointed and Disengaged” and “World Without Religion,” where the vocals and chorus bring to mind a hardcore version of the Dropkick Murphys. “Self Worthless” and “Runt” sacrifice some popular appeal for raw ferocity, but the tracks still work in their own way.

Overall, Crippled Earn is an adrenaline shot of quality hardcore punk. And as our geopolitical realities continue to spiral into some kind of insane fantasyland, you might find me listening to Swine to find some catharsis and get back to something real.

Swine Track Listing:

01. Self Worthless
02. Disappointed and Disengaged
03. World Without Religion
04. Runt

Run Time: 9:25
Release Date: February 3, 2017

Check out the track “World Without Religion”