Smashes The State - 2008 - Bones Brigade

Enemy Soil image
S= RICHARD JOHNSON>>Drugs of Faith, Agorophobic Nosebleed - VAUGHN>>Exploding Meth Lab
G= RICHARD JOHNSON>>Drugs of Faith, The Index
B= Initial State>>MASON>>The Index, Exploding Meth Lab, Initial State, Frodus
D= Adam Perry - Brian Harvey

Enemy Soil was a grindcore band from the grinding hotbed of Virginia, USA (er) that was founded in 1991 by Richard Johnson (vocals and guitar) and Mason (bass). Singer Vaughan would join later. Mason had sent a demo to Richard for review in the latter’s zine, called Disposable Underground, when the two decided to form a grindcore act. Some programming took care of the backbeats. Mason left to Texas and was busy with Initial State before rejoining the group. The band issued the Casualties Of Progress 7" on Relapse Records in 1994. The band was heard on the Nuclear Blast compilation Death... Is Just The Beginning III. At that time, Relapse was operating the American office of Nuclear Blast Records, which issued the compilation. Enemy Soil was also heard on the And the Scene Goes On ... sampler. Many line-up changes and EPs later the group disbanded in the spring of 1999. The group reunited for one show in 2001 at New York’s CBGB’s.

Several members were listed in The Index. Brian Harvey and Jr Hayes were busy with Pig Destroyer and creating rampant paranoia among both hogs and the boys in blue alike. Johnson also took over one of the vocal spots for Agorophobic Nosebleed. This last band had a split EP with Enemy Soil. Poland’s Selfmadegod issued a DVD, called Smashes The State Live, in 2008.


This DVD is composed entirely of single hand held camera footage of Enemy Soil in and around Virginia, Maryland and Canada, from 1996 to 1998 plus a 'reunion' in 2001, destroying basements and halls with their all-out performances. The many lineup changes Enemy Soil went through are obvious at every performance, including the human replacements for the drum machine, which became a feature of the band. The settings all lend to the band being face-to-face with the (small) audience and that adds to the aura of free flowing grindcore that the band played. The accompanying two page liner notes includes thoughts by Mason, Doshu Tokeshi, Omid Yamini, Adam Perry and JR Hayes who all reminisce about the chaotic and mixed up times of being part of band which seems to be more appreciated after the fact. Main man Richard Johnson is often mentioned, in particular his efforts to try to keep the band going amidst the chaos. It is acknowledged that few might remember or care about Enemy Soil, but for those who do this DVD is at least a nostalgic reminder. - Anna Tergel


Enemy Soil