DEZERTER: Blasfemia: LP

May 28, 2014

Here’s a reissue of these Polish punks’ fifth LP, the original having emerged in 1992. Blasfemia contains no shortage of ripping solos and intricate basslines, rocking hardest when the band locks into these irresistible metal grooves. An atmospheric chorus effect cuts in and out, reminiscent of darker ‘90s hardcore in the vein of Inside Out. Robert Matera’s vocals are at once bitterly venomous and catchy as hell. Luckily for me, English translations accompany the Polish lyrics—I’ve read that some of their other translations have been lacking, but these are more or less on point. The lyrics are heavy with angst in the true sense of the word: the crushing anxiety of existence, a suffocating sickness that’s futile to resist. The sentiment is all the more powerful given Poland’s history of censorship and political repression. For me, the first truly cathartic moment of the album comes halfway through “Pierwszy Raz,” when Matera’s threatening vocals erupt into a seething, snarling rage. The rest of the album never lets up as it oscillates between haunting, metal-tinged hardcore and straightforward, melodic punk rock. If you’ve been sleeping on this classic for any part of the last twenty years, now is an excellent time to catch up. 

 –Indiana Laub (Pasazer, [email protected],