All Songs Considered Blog
Thu April 19, 2012
Code Orange Kids' "My Mind Is A Prison": Unhinged Hardcore Captured Live
Originally published on Fri September 21, 2012 4:25 pm
Packed into a tiny basement in Washington, D.C. called the Rocketship, it was one of those shows where if a pit got started, everyone got involved. Shirts came off, heads narrowly avoided exposed light bulbs, and the underage room was caffeine-jacked on Arizona tallboys from the corner store.
Based on Max Moore's video for "My Body is a Well," it seems like that might be business as usual for Code Orange Kids. Moore's take on the familiar, immediate-feeling live-performance clip captures Code Orange Kids' energy and turns it into a dark, stylized take on the band's totally unhinged and tangibly aggressive hardcore
In an email, Moore explained that the video was shot "in one pass, completely live with three cameras, at a real show":
The video was shot in Louisville, Kentucky at a house show called The Chestnut House. Realizing the power and emphasis of Code Orange Kid's live performance, I knew that capturing the video live would be essential.
Drummer and one of three screamers Jami Morgan is "really stoked" about the video
[Max Moore] did an awesome job of conveying the mood/imagery that we feel goes along with our band and this split. We are proud of the song and its counterpart and even more proud of Full of Hell's killer side of the 7".
Live-performance music videos are a relatively cost-efficient way to promote a release (in this case, a split seven-inch record with Full of Hell): Set up some cameras at a show, let the band do its thing, edit it down. But there are very few that don't feel like poorly stitched-together YouTube clips or artier versions of a live Van Halen video from the '80s. Moore spices things up by splicing in anthropomorphic Evil Dead-like tree branches between live shots. But for the most part, "My Body is a Well" is edited to convey the bloodthirsty headrush Code Orange Kids inspires
Watching Code Orange Kids in that basement is like what I imagine D.C. hardcore looked like in the '80s, with Minor Threat's Ian MacKaye hanging from the rafters. That doesn't quite hit the mark — the main things that connect the two bands are age (the members of COK recently graduated from high school) and energy. A more suitable comparison might be the dark, maniacal hardcore of Deadguy slowed down to a mosh-able mash. But even then, the band's tapes and seven-inches hint at something more chaotic, sinister, and ultimately heavier, and I'm looking forward to what fresh hell Code Orange Kids conjure on its full-length for hardcore heavies Deathwish Inc. this year.
Code Orange Kids' split EP with Full of Hell is available from Top Shelf Records.