No one would ever accuse Combust singer Andrew Vacante of not being blunt about his passions. This is what the frontman had to say about the current state of NYHC:
"There aren’t enough hardcore bands. There aren’t enough promoters who actually have their hands within hardcore. The kids have their heads so far up their asses and most of them aren’t even from here, so I think more legitimate New York kids need to start stepping up and taking our city back."
The NYC native is obviously fired up about his scene and he isn't just complaining about it, he's putting his words into action. Formerly of such bands as Vice, Impact, and Nerves End, he started Combust in 2017, instantly gaining momentum with their in-your-face writing style that had people within the community compare them to hardcore OGs like Killing Time and Outburst. Andrew isn't mad at that. "I appreciate that comparison. Killing Time was my main influence, among others, for this band. I just think we’re doing shit that we love and can actually represent current NYHC made by actual New Yorkers."
Today, Combust is back with two new tracks that are the official follow-up to their late 2017 demo. "World of Confusion" and "Do Unto Others" find the quintet swinging for the fences, delivering the kind of real shit that cannot be denied.
"I personally believe these songs show that we are just moving forward and playing legitimate hardcore music, and I’m really happy with the sound and production. It really nailed what I felt like we missed with the demo. The lyrics are very important to me because I wrote them during a time where I felt like I was being let down by a good amount of people who I held in a high regard and had a lot of compassion for while battling with other personal struggles. I was making big steps in my life without people I thought would be there. It speaks of a lot of self realization. Knowing what you have to do to move forward and not stay stagnant. So, please read the lyrics [the lyrics are available on Combust's Bandcamp page] cause maybe it can help you in a way that it helps me."
Now that they've been a band for about a year now, Combust are moving forward with more live dates. I asked Andrew how he felt about stylistically mixed bills, since I've noticed more of them happening here in Los Angeles as of late. "There’s so many different people and different specific sub scenes within New York that I feel like it’s rare that you have that mixture you see in a lot of places. I personally don’t mind a mixed bill, I guess.
"As far as having more or less mixed live bills....part of me just feels like if I’m going to a hardcore show, I wanna be at a fuckin hardcore show, you know? I want all bands that I like that are gonna make me feel what hardcore bands make me feel and not have a 40-minute intermission of some soft band out of nowhere putting a wrench in my whole vibe."
You see, I told you Andrew doesn't mince words.