BENÜMB took the next year and a half to further develop their style of pounding hardcore/thrash as they played tons of shows with friends and peers MAN IS THE BASTARD, SPAZZ, EXHUMED, DYSTOPIA and CAPITALIST CASUALTIES, among others, all the while remembering and appreciating the unity and friendships they were building. 1997 was a busy year for BENÜMB, as the band recorded and released numerous seven inch records, including splits with DUKES OF HAZZARD and APARTMENT 213. Their crushing live set at the infamous Fiesta Grande festival was recorded and released as part of the Fiesta Comes Alive! LP on Slap A Ham. After following the band's progression, witnessing their live performances and hearing their angry bursts of unreal frustration, Relapse had no choice but to get involved.
In late 1997 the destructive Gear In The Machine 7" was released on the Relapse 7" series and in 1998, a killer live split-flexi with SUPPRESSION accompanied issue ..3 of the notorious Monkeybite fanzine to an enormous response. In May of 1998, BENÜMB released their first full-length, Soul Of The Martyr, which delivered 38 atomic clouts of ferocious hardcore/grind in the California tradition. Unveiling caustic new material alongside the Gear... recordings and material from the APARTMENT 213 and the (forthcoming) AGORAPHOBIC NOSEBLEED splits, Soul... also contained BENÜMB's full live performance from the Fiesta Comes Alive! recording.
Soul Of The Martyr was fueled by anger, influenced by metal, and destined for cult status! Songs such as the shocking Agony 1 (:18) and the oh-so-sudden Agony 2 (:05) showed the grinding ferocity of the band, while tracks like Stood Up and Sold Out and Deprivation revealed an overwhelming other side. The inner-sleeve of the release showed BENÜMB's respect and dedication to the underground scene that they thrive in as the band listed the contact information to 101(!) of their favorite bands. Soul Of The Marytr met to a rousing response, and the band promoted the release by completing several mini-tours of the U.S., and appeared at every major U.S. heavy music festival in the two years that followed, including the 1998 and 1999 Milwaukee Metalfests and the 1998 and 1999 March Metal Meltdowns. BENÜMB then issued an eye-opening affirmation to the declining state of society with Withering Strands Of Hope.
Produced by Bart Thurber (SPAZZ, EXHUMED) at Oakland's House Of Faith, Withering Strands Of Hope assails the listener with hostile hardcore/grind and is a grand platform for the band's venomous commentary. Remarkable songs like Once And Never Again, Oxygen Thief, Father To The Fatherless and Ascend From Persecution showed BENÜMB railing against apathy, suppression and neglect with a take-no-prisoners ferocity and activist's aggressiveness. Withering Strands Of Hope was the soundtrack to an impending revolution and musical mutiny at its anarchistic apex. Following shortly after in the spring of 2002, BENÜMB attacked again, this time in the form of the critically-acclaimed split 3" CD with labelmates and grind visionaries PIG DESTROYER.
In addition to being the band's best-recieved recording to date, this split EP showcased an intense evolution in the band's sound with the return of Paul Pontikoff (VULGAR PIGEONS) on guitars. BENÜMB have established a reputation among punks and metalheads alike as one of the most aggressive American hardcore bands. With their new album, By Means of Upheaval, BENÜMB deliver twenty two anger-inspired tracks of ferocious and relentless grind. Blending social concern and political frustration into a lyrical attack that equals the band's sonic violence, BENÜMB absolutely destroy, delivering a rebellion-inducing audio onslaught! Read more on Last.fm. User-contributed text is available under the Creative Commons By-SA License; additional terms may apply..
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