Wednesday, 9 June 2010

Poland - Lublin

Hi! I am from Lublin. It's a city in Eastern Poland with 400 000 people living in it. A big part of them are students, since we've got 5 univeristies here, so during holidays the city seems almost dead empty haha.

The hardcore punk scene in Lublin always was pretty strong. It used to be called the polish Portland. I've been an active participant in the scene since 2000. That's when a golden era of DIY gigs started and lots of new bands popped up in Lublin or in the area.

During the 90's the most known band was AMEN with a strong anarchist/atheist/vegetarian message (they released a live tape, a split tape with another local band RED LIGHT and a 7"). Some members of AMEN later formed ANTICHRIST which was a step forward to more extreme forms of hc/punk (imagine Born Against combined with Assuck). They released a 12", two 7" and 1 split 7" w/ INTENSITY from Sweden.

In the meantime (late 90's/early 2000's) in two nearby cities (Pulawy and Kurow) lots of Straight Edge and Emo Core bands started playing. Pretty strange, since in the 80's Pulawy was the polish heroin capital and the mother town of the most extreme of all polish 80's hardcore bands - SIEKIERA (check out their "summer '84" demo tape), which later turned into a cold wave band (these recordings are also woth checking out!).

Design: Negative Pete

The most known Straight Edge bands from that area were CRUSH ALL FAKES (old school hardcore) and INSURRECTION (new school hardcore), both bands ended up on a 4 way split. JULIETTE was the most known emo core band with members from Lublin and Pulawy (they released a demo cd-r and a cd).

GAS CHAMBER MELODIES was the next band to take emo a step further into hell (a local answer to ORCHID or REVERSAL OF MAN. Emo was never my thing, but i must admit that GCM's live shows were very intense! GCM released a demo cd-r which was finally released with some extra tracks as a 12" last year.

One of the busiest touring Lublin bands was SILENCE combining crust parts with some emotional riffs (kinda like early REMAINS OF THE DAY). They released one 7", one 10", one 12" and a split 7".

Members of ANTICHRIST, SILENCE and GAS CHAMBER MELODIES formed THE BOLD AND THE BEAUTIFUL, a local answer to power violence with a strong social/political message, often packed in a humorous form (so far they've released two split 12"s and are still active).

The local answer to grindcore punk is SUFFERING MIND who released numerous records, mostly splits. They also have a stench core side project called HELLISHHEAVEN (they released a split 12").

Artwork: Nothing Sacred

PANACEA from Pulawy can be called the continuators of SILENCE. So far they released a 12" and a split 7" with ALL DAY HELL from Biala Podlaska.

The local answer to traditional punk rock is IN VITRO who recently released a cd which will soon be released as a 12" with some bonus tracks. I myself used to play in THE BOLD AND THE BEAUTIFUL and later on joined KNIFE IN THE LEG, a local answer to 80's hardcore. So far we have released one 7", two split 7"s (with IMPERIAL LEATHER and The FIGHT), a split 12" w/ FIX MY HEAD and a new 7" is soon to be released.

Some of us also play a more rock & roll approach to punk in THE UNION (we released a demo tape).

Other bands worth mentioning that haven't released anything yet are ALERT! ALERT! (raw d-beat where i also play), KILL AT COMMAND (crust core, not active anymore, but some of their songs should end up on a split 7"), BATTERED (doom/sludge, also disbanded, some of their songs will be released on a 4 way split and a tape) and PRZECIW, which is one of the longest running punk bands from Lublin (they released a tape and a cd with new songs and their previous recording as a bonus).

We also recently had an all girl punk band called FE! but they recently disbanded without releasing anything.

The community is not very big, but quite strong. The number of people playing in bands is small, so most people play in more than one band. I myself play in four.
For the last 4 years we have a local venue called TEKTURA, where DIY gigs are held 2-3 times a month (the number of public varies... sometimes it's almost 200 people, sometimes it's only 20... but most of the time it's around 100 people at a show). Except shows we have a local FOOD NOT BOMBS group which is active every winter and a Samba group with more than 10 people playing (very useful during demonstrations), from time to time a critical mass is held. Latety we had a fascist march (130 boneheads) in our city, so we organised a legal demonstration (around 150 people attended it) and also an illegal blockade of the fascist march with around 40 people blocking one street on the way (34 got arrested and were luckily released with no charges and a small fine to pay).

OK, that's all I guess.
Stay Punk!

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