Trash Talk are granite. Slabs of the stuff, smacking your face. Razor throated nihilistic screams from Lee Spielman, thundering doubled up kick drums, and grinding bass and guitar- in fact, everything you’d expect from a Sacramento hardcore outfit. This, the bands fourth album, is going to get a whole lot more attention than the previous three solely because it’s being released on Odd Future Records. Odd Future is the label owned by the hip hop crew of the same name, and Trash Talk are their first non-rap signing.
The frantic pace and 80s retreads of the band make utter sense in the context of Odd Future’s vicious, parent baiting, old skool aping hip hop, but like their new mentors there’s a sense of style over substance on this record. 119 is enjoyable enough hardcore, but it could have been made at any time in the last 20 years, and has been, time and again. There’s less of the charisma that makes Cerebal Ballzy stand out, and I can’t see why Trash Talk are any better – or, to be fair, worse- than a million other Californian outfits. It’s competent, tight punk, and if that’s what you’re after you won’t be disappointed. Still, there’s nothing to come close to the hardcore blueprint laid down by Suicidal Tendencies on their classic ’83 debut, and instead you’re treated to repetitions of angry hollering and thudding riffs.
No doubt hordes of hipsters will be able to enjoy a thrillingly exciting mosh to this, and long standing punk fans should find enough meat n potatoes songcraft to nod along to, but as albums go, 119 is just alright rather than utterly definitive. Listen in full below