Got a package in the mail today and it came from Niels! One (if not the) high points in European Hardcore saw the light of day when all was almost over: The incredibly catchy and tense EP by Holland’s GEPOPEL. I will never forget how blown away I was over the power of “Paracide”. I had known the tracks from the “The Wolf in Sheep’s Clothing” comp LP, but this EP just left me speechless. And it still does: You know, music in it’s best moments can be a container of memories. It’s not clear pictures or events that I associate with GEPOPEL’s pounding drum beat, desperate and youthful singing and the clean riffs – it’s more of an emotional setting, a mood, a moment. The song “Paracide” would forever be on any “Best of Hardcore” – compilation I might be assembling (although since iTunes, mp3 and all that, I’ve never compiled much no more. Man, I loved sitting in front of my records, pulling everything out, trying if the particular band would hit the right mood needed for the comp and then started recording the songs onto tape, trying to deliver a good cutting job. Here’s another for you re-enactment guys: It was all about the lack of hi-tech!). “Dogs” starts off with one helluva roar and all the other songs on “Paracide” breath the same fresh air. This is Hardcore: No Metal, no more Punk audible. It was something new, somthing unique and in all its limited glory, something ephemeral.
This discography contains all (at least this is what it says) of the band’s recording history (Niels: I think there’s plenty of unused stuff from the FUNERAL ORATION / GEPOPEL split demo, isn’t there?). It’s nice to ride through the album and hear how the band developped and changed. The liner notes of Niels are a good and interesting read, very personal and reflected, just like what he always achieved with his greatly missed blog. Yet I must say that this LP has its flaws: First off, it’s the really cheap cover. I mean, Photoshop doesn’t make you a graphic designer and worse yet – if you can’t properly handle it for a prestage printing production, it totally fucks things up. The sound reproduction is okay: Unfortunately the level is extremely low and the EP sound has been “pushed” a little with adding some bass frequencies (or taking out the middle frequencies by accident). Nothing dramatic, but if you have listened to the EP regularly over the past 23 years like I did, you immediately hear a difference. I couldn’t resist it and ripped the EP version of “Paracide” with the same settings for you to compare.
Anyway – if you don’t have the original EP and even if you do, you must get this from noiseanddistortion.com or you might wanna try and ask Niels directly.
Original EP track: