Dazzling Killmen – Face of Collapse: Special Edition

5 out of 5

Label: Skin Graft Records

Produced by: Blake Fleming and Andris Balins (remastered by)

So, bad news up front: the extra tracks included on this special edition maybe don’t matter? They are remastered, but because they’re not part of the original album, they don’t necessarily belong – the alternate of My Lacerations is interesting but not required – and you probably own these as part of Recuerda, remastering aside.

Good news: the fact that they don’t matter doesn’t matter. This is an amazing, landmark hardcore album, and while the harsh edges of the original recording are part of it, it is also such an ear-blessing to have this remastered, bringing Nick Sakes’ vocals a little out of the fuzz – which just makes them harsher – and similarly allowing the brutality of the guitar, bass, and drumming to just hit that much harder. I won’t trash-talk purists, but this is my new preferred way of hearing these tracks.

On top of that, Skin Graft did their work on the packaging: extensive liner notes, a gorgeous 4th-side silkscreened LP – take note, lazily-etched half-designed empty sides of LPs; this is what this stuff can look like – and a nifty OBI, just to round out the package.

Absolutely worth it, even if you end up defaulting to the original, just to hear the difference + the packaging bonuses.