V/A – Kaosa Euskal Herrian
Tough Ain’t Enough Records / Zalduntxoen Biltzarra
Of course it were the "Chaos En France" compilations it all started with, but over the years chaos has reigned over Sweden, Catalonia, Italy and even the entire continent of Europe! With exception of the latter, which was actually the follow up album to the two classic "Chaos En France" compilations, all other albums copied the pioneering records by Chaos Productions with their layout and artwork, always resulting in excellent compilations – though the originals were never beaten.
Now Tough Ain't Enough Records' latest compilation might not exactly look like the next "Chaos In..." type of album, simply because it doesn't have that cartoony kind of cover and layout – but truth is, it is! Entitled "Kaosa Euskal Herrian" – which literally translates into "Chaos In Basque Country" – this is now the second autonomous region of Spain that gets its own "Chaos In..." compilation and with 25 bands total it's quite the chaos indeed!
Although it has been a while since I last received such a massive compilation, it is always a welcoming addition to the collection – especially when all songs were, at least at the time of release, previously unreleased! Besides the CD version, I don't think it will surprise anyone that 25 bands and an equal amount of songs don't fit on a single LP, making "Kaosa Euskal Herrian" a double LP, spreading the festa over four sides of vinyl!
Yet familiar with a good portion of its contributors, there's also room for plenty of debutantes on "Kaosa Euskal Herrian". Known bands such as Cuero (if you haven't checked these guys out just yet you really, really have to), Sta. Cruz (their debut EP is out now on Mendeku Diskak), MadSkins, Labana (ex-Hexen, debut EP out now on Common People Records), Revertt, Tears & Beers, Blessure (debuted earlier this year on a fairly brilliant split EP with Golpe De Gracia), Kaleko Urdangak (Tough Ain't Enough Records' big dogs), Orreaga 778, Doubling Boys and Rotten XIII are mixed with debutants like Zikin, Miñoi, Aho Zakil Konektion, Iramo, Sindy Berbenas, Irauten, Atturri and Street Wise – resulting in a fairly brilliant compilation with top quality coming from both the old guard and Basque's new glory – love it!
But a compilation wouldn't be a compilation without some favorites, right? On this double LP mine are the black metal skinheads of Cuero (though their track eventually got released on the "Cabezabota" EP as well), the ladies of Labana, the French and female fronted Blessure, debutantes Iramo who somewhat wrote the title-track to this record with the song "Kaosa", the always anthemic Kaleko Urdangak, the tough Doubling Boys, Tatxers with their The Vicious/Generacion Suicida/Rotten Mind vibe, Rotten XIII – simply because a saxophone in Oi! is always a big plus and if we aren't going to hear more from Atturri in the near future I'll eat my hat, killer!
"Kaosa Euskal Herrian" is massive in its tracklist (25 songs/bands) and runtime (over 75 minutes of chaos), but never gets old or bored as it is stacked with hits and perfectly compiled by Tough Ain't Enough Records, making listening to this compilation smoother than slicing with a hot knife through butter! Must-have!