Published Oct 02, 2014Earlier this year, Davey Havok and Jade Puget took a break from their beloved gothy pop punk band AFI to explore more aggressive sounds as XTRMST. The pair shared a four-song demo, which they'll soon follow up with a proper LP.
The album is simply called XTRMST and, according to Havok, was actually a long time coming. "Jade and I have been talking about starting a straight edge hardcore band for years," he said in a press release. "We started writing and recording in early 2012 and chose the name XTRMST because it expresses the messages represented on the record. The straight edge movement is not one of moderation. It's based in undeniable objective truths."
The album was recorded by Puget at his home studio. It will arrive on November 18 via Dim Mak. Label head Steve Aoki, though not straight edge now, spent the early part of his musical career as a member of the straight-edge hardcore community.
"I got into straight-edge hardcore when I was a teen. It was my community, it was the reason I picked up a guitar, it's the reason I was in bands, and ultimately it was the reason why I started Dim Mak," Aoki said. "I met Davey a while back and we bonded over our shared experiences in straight-edge culture. We found a lot of kinship there, and so it made sense for us to release an album that represents the spirit of what originally birthed Dim Mak."
While it's billed as a straight-edge hardcore band, XTRMST do not play music that sounds like Minor Threat, Carry On or Keep It Clear. Instead, the songs are complex and technical, often leaning towards metalcore. "I wanted these songs to be chaos, at times difficult to listen to, the wild architecture difficult to understand, but with a taste of the hardcore we grew up on thrown in. The vocals are raw and the main vocal in every song is the first take," Puget said.
Check out the tracklisting for XTRMST below, along with a stream of the new song "Words for the Unwanted."
1. Words For the Unwanted
3. Social Deathplay
8. The Breed
10. The Way
11. Swallow Your God
12. Dirty Nails
14. Coward Bow Your Head