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System Of Hate – Unhallowed Ground - December 27th 2016 - Sentinel Daily - Link

The best way to get rid of any remaining post-Christmas cheer... Barnsley misanthropes System of Hate purvey what the press release accompanying this album describes as ‘aphotic power punk’; As I’m sure you’re aware the word aphotic refers to that portion of underwater ‘inner space’ where less than 1% of sunlight penetrates the depths. And if Unhallowed Ground isn’t as resolutely stygian as such an adjective might denote, it’s pretty bloody close. If you’ve had your fill of Call the Midwife-fuelled Christmas cheer for one year, this is surely the album to cancel out any traces of the feelgood factor in your system.

Overcoming the considerable handicap of bassist Paddy’s resemblance to celebrity baker Paul Hollywood, the band bring together an exciting mix of Killing Joke, Amebix and Joy Division to create a cold, unloving, synthwashed post punk backdrop to the excellent vocals of Dave, who barks out his tales of woe – again referring to that press release, he’s baring the heart of South Yorkshire to us all, exhorting us to watch it bleed – in suitably careworn fashion.

Tracks like Crucified and Antichrist are excellent, aggressive soundclashes taking place at the junction where agit punk and gothic romanticism meet, all droning guitars and low slung bass menace, whilst Zealot’s Path adds some honking sax to give a surprise, though undoubtedly welcome whiff of The Psychedelic Furs to proceedings.

Mutilation is shorter, sharper and altogether more punked-up, whilst the excellent Killing Fields, despite weighing in at only three minutes in length has a real epic feel to it; In fact the closing title track that follows …Fields, Unhallowed Ground, is something of an epic – at seven and a quarter minutes long it’s by far the longest song on the album – and the two songs mesh together well to close the album in brooding, portentous fashion – Even if that closing track does ostentatiously press gang the bassline to Joy Division’s Transmission into service as it’s intro! But that aside, the track is a monster, and I can see many a dive bar dancefloor rammed to the gills with off-their-gourds-on-cider punx and goths falling under it’s hypnotic sway in 2017!

Great stuff then, especially for fans of fans of the punk and post-punk of the early eighties. And old miseries like me.

System Of Hate – Unhallowed Ground, December 23, 2016 - Moshville Times - Link

This band seem fearless, as they barge their way through punk avenues at a breakneck speed. System Of Hate are an act with a spirit many bands lack, rolling out songs that will attract the poet within you. They create intelligent wordplay, weaving and placing those words correctly, with ease and inventiveness.

A state of anxiousness is evident. The music is fierce, but there is a sense of unrest; of deep panic. It’s heard in the songs that make up Unhallowed Ground, an album brimming with searing riffs and energy. This energy marries well with darkness and sombreness. And yes, the songs may seem upbeat when the crashing guitars overlap, but there’s a pessimistic tone that thunders through.

With punk, there’s no obligations. It’s a movement that doesn’t hold you or contain you, it drives you to become a person of curiosity. It has its weirdos and people that are drawn to its rawness. It’s a genre powered by a DIY ethic. The disenchanted traveller also listens to punk as an escape mechanism away from the tediousness of day to day life. System Of Hate embody punk rock. Their album pushes for hope. It doesn’t cling onto lost moments. It doesn’t crash into tarnished memories. It’s about the here and the now.

The record begins with “Rogue Apostle”, a track that opens with a solid guitar riff that complements the harsh vocals. The wisdom of the words shine through, managing to create an electrifying atmosphere. “Antichrist” is a revealing track. It describes death and conveys a sense of longing too. The song plays emphatically well with the cutting-edge guitar sequence. “Mutilation” is fast and expertly driven, communicating dark lyrics and negativity.

System Of Hate are a band keeping fierce punk alive. They’re a group that don’t give a damn!

SYSTEM OF HATE – Unhallowed Ground by PUNK ON LINE - Weblink

The vaguely middle eastern keyboard opening to the track Rogue Apostle briefly engages the listener before System of Hate launch into a monster guitar riff and vocal treatment that reminded me of Killing Joke. The album from these punk rockers from Barnsley in the fertile musical region of South Yorkshire England is a barnstormer. Released last month, Unhallowed Ground is aggressive yet sophisticated. Kiss The World (1916) begins with a snippet of a Northern brass band and then sits you back as it launches into a rhythmic/tribal Amebix style assault on your senses.

System of Hate have appeared at Rebellion (this summer was their 4th consecutive appearance) and have supported legends such as Discharge, Sham 69, Vice Squad, UK Subs and The Angelic Upstarts. The bass heavy introduction to Crucified builds into a keyboard led chorus as the track powers along at a tremendous pace. Three songs in and I’m overwhelmed with a feeling of having discovered the next wave of punk. System of Hate are lyrically dark, musically powerful but full of hooks and melody that are very compelling. I simply loved Antichrist with it’s blending of the Killing Joke and Amebix influences to create a sound that only Rudimentary Peni have come close to over the years.

The album reached the half-way point with Santoria, a track that is propelled by a strong beat, huge walls of guitar, a chanted multi-vocal chorus and a keyboard solo…if this isn’t the perfect punk sound for 2016, I’m not sure what is. Unhallowed Ground is extremely well produced and that’s a blessing as these folks write complex songs where every instrument has an important role. On Zealot’s Path the addition of a saxophone adds that Theatre of Hate ambiance and that feeling is cemented by the superb bass guitar up-front in the mix.

The band are far from monolithic in their approach or sound and can deliver some straight up punk rock as they do on Mutilation albeit with melodic backing vocals adding to the mosaic. Apostle Of Pain brings forward the menacing keyboards creating a bloodcurdling wall of sound truly fitting the lyrics. It’s a super track clocking in at four minutes and precedes the shortest track on the album, Killing Fields where the band bash out a tribal powerhouse of a song that had me back in Rudimentary Peni land.

The album closes with the mammoth seven minute long title track Unhallowed Ground. The bass guitar kicks in hard and fast, is joined by drums and a building keyboard and the guitar adds to the construction. For over 100 seconds, the song builds before we are surprised with a Sisters of Mercy style melodic vocal. It’s a track that you can see being used in movies, adverts and as backing to sports clips. It’s also a fitting end to a tremendous album. One of the best of 2016 for me!


If this is hate, bring on the war! 8/10

These Barnsley bruisers might have only been around since 2012 but, after the first wall of saxophone here, they thrust us straight back into the cold, dark '80's with this official release of the album. Songs go like the clappers, taking in elements of street, anarcho, gothic and crust punk. The tribal drumming bombast jousts with chugging guitar and underlying synth work, providing an antagonistic velocity and sounding like the band could easily have escaped from an old Mortarhate compilation album. Short, sharp and very much to the point, numbers like 'Crucified' and 'Antichrist' are battered out without compromise, really getting under the skin and energising with their incessant, powerful clamour. The immediacy of the material gets you on the first listen, has no problem dragging you back for another addicted spin and proves a compulsive charge to seeing the band live.............Pete Woods

System of Hate – Unhallowed Ground (Ret Records), Mass Movement Mag, 7 Oct 16 - Web

And lo did the Beast create System of Hate and say unto them “Thou shall carry forth the seed of thy progenitors and sow it far across the face of the world”, and they did rise from the clay and set forth to help usher in a new age of reason. Or rather, in my imagination, and after listening to Unhallowed Ground on repeat all morning, that’s how I imagine System of Hate were brought into being; their fusion of early Killing Joke, Bauhaus, The Damned and Amebix, filled with astute political commentary and religious imagery rising from the darkness to drag us all, willingly and happily, back through time to the eighties. Back to their natural habitat, a time when alternative and indie bands – and music –stood for something, were exciting, thrived on danger and were more than just the sum of their parts. Simply tagging System of Hate as a punk band would do them disservice, as they dwell in that strange wasteland between the original Goth movement and mid-eighties UK punk, existing solely in neither scene, but nevertheless, still part of both. And they sound fantastic… Tim Cundle

Rebellion Festival 2016 - Blackpool, Winter Gardens - 4th August 16 by UBER ROCK- Web

"Next up we head to the Pavilion for the first time to catch Northern post punks System Of Hate, a band who impressed me greatly with their recently released ‘Unhallowed Ground’ album. They seem to have impressed a fair few others too as the place is packed long before their countdown intro tape builds the atmosphere and temperature to boiling point as opener ‘Sanatoria’ does it’s best to rob me of whatever hearing I have left after The Dwarves. It’s ‘Crucified’ where the band really shines though, or is that flash of white light from singer Suty’s studded gauntlets catching the follow spot? A fine performance from a band fast moving up the Rebellion bill."

System Of Hate, "Unhallowed Ground", 8/10 - Terrorizer Issue 272, July 2016 by Ian Glasper

Well, the first thing that hits you - literally between the eyes - is how massive this sounds for a self-released effort, System Of Hate refusing to compromise their sonic power in their conviction to do it themselves. Opener 'Rogue Apostle' gets things off to a lively start, but the band soon settle down into a huge rumbling grove, complimented by sweeping keys, that pitches its tent somewhere between Amebix and Killing Joke, which is obviously no bad place to be. There's even an occasional nod towards the Misfits (when they were good), but it's tracks like 'Sanatoria' that make this such a revelation, throbbing with a glorious dark, industrial post-punk fury.

Louder Than War (John Robb) Album Review - 'Unhallowed Ground' - 8/10 - Web Link

A few years ago we played circuit gig in Wakefield and a bunch of silver haired punk vets turned up in black combat gear. They were good company and we talked great records with them. Then they got on stage in an unassuming manner and started their soundcheck and we were blown away with their ambition and power.

System Of Hate’s debut album continues this theme. Far better than it needs to be this is a dark and apocalyptic work from the Barnsley based band that takes its cues from the mighty Killing Joke but very much has its own stamp to it.

The intelligent use of drone keyboards and even an occasional sax combined with the tough gnarl of grinding punk anger is a really effective combination that is a clean break from the UK punk scene with its imaginative and melodic yet still dark power. With an effective and driving bass clatter and chainsaw riffing guitars this album deconstructs punk rock and rebuilds it into a mighty sonic monster.

System Of Hate have somehow managed to find a space that they can call their own in a heavily subscribed space and need to be heard. War, religion, hate and anger are the themes that are dealt with in a dark humour and high decibel intelligence.

A lot of thought has been put into this recording – the band have never gone for the obvious but never lose their power in an unrelenting and power release that really needs to be heard. Stand out tack is the anthemic Killing Fields but to be honest the whole album creates a dark and strangely attractive desolate world where the darkest corners of Ian Curtis’s psych jam it out with the aformentioned Killing Joke and a whole host of dark hearted post punk troubadours replanted into the far more desperate and dark and dangerous 21st century.

An unjustified beneath the radar release that must be heard.

System Of Hate - ‘Unhallowed Ground’ by Johnny H - Uber - May 2016 - Web

I’m not exactly sure why but ‘Unhallowed Ground’, the debut full length album from Barnsley’s System Of Hate, has almost left me speechless. Why? Well it’s certainly not like I wasn’t expecting them to be a decent band, to be playing their fourth consecutive Rebellion Festival this summer must mean they are doing something right, right? Plus the band members aren’t exactly lacking in self-belief either, as anyone who has either seen them parading around the Winter Gardens in their self-promoting t-shirts, or better still, caught one of their live performances will confirm. No, I think that what has astounded me most about this album is just how fucking excellent ‘Unhallowed Ground’ really is.

Okay granted it too me a few plays to fully get under the skin of the ten tracker but once the subtler charms of the likes of ‘Kiss The World (1916)’ and ‘Crucified’ started to unwind within my head I suddenly started to realise just how “different” System Of Hate are.

It would be very easy to simply label what these guys do as being Killing Joke-like, but that for me is really oversimplifying their true full potential, yes tracks like opener ‘Rogue Apostle’ and ‘Antichrist’ are pretty relentless in their delivery just like Killing Joke are, but what I hear here is actually more akin to some twisted hybrid of The Sisters Of Mercy crashing headlong into Discharge, however this all comes with some of the most fantastic saxophone and keyboard touches you will hear this side of a Psychedelic Furs record.

System Of Hate are definitely more dark wave than metal and more punk rock than anything to do with the new romantic movement, yet somehow that take all of the aforementioned and turn this twisted gene pool of influences into a musical fist in the face that continues to stagger and amaze me even after a good twenty listens to the album. It’s the saxophone driven ‘Zealot’s Path’ the discordant Prong-like guitar riff of ‘Apostle Of Pain’ and the almost space rock 7 minute plus epic that is the title track that truly makes this record, and System Of Hate, stand out from the crowd, and the production by Matt Ellis at Axis Studios in Doncaster is some of the clearest yet sonically challenging I have heard for an unsigned band in a long long time.

Admittedly I’m playing catch up reviewing ‘Unhallowed Ground’ a good couple of months after the album was initially released, but it is simply too good to be ignored. So, without further ado hit the links below and get yourself a copy of the digipak CD, you will not be disappointed.

Stunning stuff!

System Of Hate : "Unhallowed Ground" - POSITIVE CREED FANZINE ISSUE#29

After two EP's and many years of hard graft, System Of Hate's long awaited debut album is finally here. I had a feeling that this was going to be something a bit special and I wasn't wrong. What we have here is ten splendid tracks of well crafted punk rock with smooth production and right from the off, these guys don't put a foot out of place. 'Rogue Apostle' is the perfect opener and sets things up nicely for what's to come. 'Kiss The World'. 'Antichrist', 'Sanatoria', 'Zealot's Path', 'Apostle Of Pain', 'Killing Fields' are all brilliant songs and 'Unhallowed Ground' finishes things off and has a bit of a Joy Division feel about it. This album has an eerie goth presence from beginning to end which is built around a punk structure and the combination of both elements works perfectly. Adding keyboards and saxophone to these songs also gives System Of Hate that extra edge over most punk bands around today and their ability to play certainly shines through here. It's hard to believe that Unhallowed Ground is a debut album as the standard of songs and the musicianship behind them could easily indicate a band that has been playing longer than four years. This is an exceptional album in every sense of the word. (Rob) 10 / 10

SYSTEM OF HATE – UNHALLOWED GROUND, March 24, 2016, Alternative Barnsley

There are two things that you really need to know. Firstly, ‘Unhallowed Ground’ is a magnificent debut album by Barnsleys very own, System of Hate. For anyone who has been watching this group develop since the early gigs in 2013, this is the album that we hoped they would make, but perhaps were unsure they could make. Sometimes a studio environment can stifle, rather than capture bands with a reputation for blistering live shows. No fear here though. Producer Matt Elliss has done a thoroughly superb job at the controls and brought out visceral performances from all concerned. This sounds absolutely huge.

My first listen of this behemothic slab of dark punk provided the soundtrack to a terrifying late night car journey home down the M1 last week. My dashboard lit up like a disco and the car steering juddered, as I sweated and repeated a short prayer/mantra, “Just get me home, just get me home!” over the top of System of Hate. Perhaps not an ideal introduction to this album, but then again, they do like things dark, don’t they? Sadly, the car is no more. It expired. It has ceased to be. I don’t believe that there’s any connection between the two events though.

The album opens with a beautiful, other worldly saxophone melody from guest musician, Andy Blower. I almost visualise an alien sun rising, giving light to a barren planet in a far off galaxy. Then suddenly everything, including the kitchen sink, is thrown at you at once, as System of Hate bludgeon you over the head with an intense riff and vocalist Suty growls ”Serpent Father, bless me, your cobra breath instills, lift my sad existence, give me strength to kill”. This is the opener “Rogue Apostle” and is a perfect introduction to the next 36 minutes and 44 seconds of your listening pleasure.

An essential element to the System of Hate sound is the epic, melodic bass lines of Paddy O’Neill and there are plenty of them. He has an immediately recognisable style and the physical stature to back up such a big sound, as well as being one of the nicest, most genuine souls you could ever meet. Teamed with Carl Gullifords tribal drums, it is an awesome rhythm section. At times on this album, they play with a claustrophobic urgency that literally pins you to the wall. The drumming is just sublime. Don’t put this album on and then settle down with a good book. Background music this ain’t.

“Sanatoria” begins with an 80’s keyboard sound that initially reminds me of Hall and Oates! I wasn’t expecting that, but it actually works. It really works and provides a brief, but welcome chink of light in the proceedings, before the lads kick in and reclaim the mood. When I saw keyboardist Martin Roberts debut gig as part of System of Hate, my jaw dropped. Not a regular event, I can assure you. However, this was what the overall System of Hate sound required to take it from brilliant to a compelling, live event with numerous possibilities.

In addition to this, on the album, Andy Blowers post punk saxophone paints fresh melodic colours into songs like “Zealots Path” and recalls those urgent early 1980’s singles by Theatre of Hate and the Psychedelic Furs, who subscribed to David Bowie’s contention that the saxophone can be stripped of all its jazz connotations.

Now, as good as the previous nine tracks are, they still do not adequately prepare you for the last song, “Unhallowed Ground”. At just over 7 minutes long, it is a tour de force of what can still be achieved within the confines of rock music, dark punk, whatever you want to call it. Opening with a Joy Division-esque majesty, driven by another Paddy bass line, it is almost 2 minutes before Suty enters the fray and if you’re not dancing by this point, you should check your pulse. Carls drums push and drive the whole song, with fantastic gutsy stabs and shards of guitar from Pat Crawford. Every single band member puts their heart and soul into this and it shows. Wow, most bands only dream of achieving a performance like this. This is music with ambition and conviction. Non of that apologetic, “it’s only little old us” bollocks.

I tell yer, if Donald Trump gets the US Presidency and inflames and incites the world to turn in on itself and ‘The Button’ gets pressed, then I’d want to go out dancing to this song ! As the radiation blast tears the flesh from my bones, this is the sound I’d want as my ears melted. Yes, folks, this song really is that good. I can’t wait to hear it live again.

Oh, the second thing you need to know ? – contact Pat Crawford for a copy. Do it. Today.

Words by Steve Dalton. System of Hate play Blackpool’s Rebellion Festival on Thursday 4th August, alongside Descendents, Flag, The Dickies, TSOL, Peter & the Test Tube Babies, CJ Ramone and many, many others.

Keep up to date with all things System of Hate by stalking the following links: -

FORKSTER'S Daily Band Review - 06/09/2014 - web link -

System Of Hate are a riveting, thunderous “True defined” Punk Rock sound/band hailing out of Barnsley, England!

These ferociously strong rockers bring driving ‘riffs & rhythms’ with a mighty vocal presence of dark depth! The overall intensity and musicianship of the band is nothing less than magnificent!

On that rocking note, they quickly are becoming legendary for their live gigs and with that combined with their outstanding “All music tracks”, I ‘without a doubt’ can see ‘true music appreciators’ following these explosive punk rockers. Hey, put this band in your ear modules for a bit and let them “Rock it out” for you all, definitely worth it, for sure!

INSANITY EP (INDUSTRIAL REMIX) Review by Alternative Barnsley 25/08/2014 Web

When I were a lad, back in’t day, a remix usually meant that the 7” single version of a song had been extended for the 12” version. Frustratingly, the chorus now came in at the beginning of the song (where it shouldn’t), there were long instrumental passages with slightly louder drums and sometimes the most innocuous lyric repeated over and over. More often than not, it all just sounded a bit shit. Gimme the 7” version, any day. However, in the late 1980’s, things started to improve drastically and the remix version of a song could become something else entirely. The most obvious example that springs to mind is Andrew Weatheralls remix of Primal Screams 1989 so-so ballad “I’m Losing More Than I’ll Ever Have” to create the monster that was and still is “Loaded”. He didn’t just remix it, he took it back to the very bare bones and then totally re-created the song with the help of a drum-loop and a fistful of Class A’s. Actually, I’m astonished Bobby Gillespie had the nous to go with it, considering he was virtually removed from the record.

Well, a similar thing has happened on our very own doorsteps, with Lyndon Scarfe’s ‘Industrial Remix’ of System of Hate’s “Insanity” EP. He has taken a record I really like….and turned it inside out to create a record I now really, really like. Similar to Weatherall, Lyndon’s ‘Industrial Remix’ strips many of the songs right back and then like Dr Victor Frankenstein, he creates new life ! Almost doubling the original running length of the EP, he has taken Systems ‘dark punk’ into fresh and exciting areas, that maybe they never thought they would venture.

The first track, “Insanity” has its backing vocals extended and brought right up in the mix, with the original saxophone now wailing an almost Eastern melody. There is now a weird sound, running concurrently through the track, like a thousand pissed off wasps trapped in a lift shaft, but it’s fantastic. A bit like listening to the Thirteenth Floor Elevators for the first time and not knowing what that bizarre ‘wooga wooga’ sound is (it was Tommy Halls electric jug) Mocking laughter reverberates, as we are bludgeoned with repeated chants of “Insanity”.

An essential ingredient to my love for this band is Paddy O’Neills epic, melodic bass lines and “Ashes of Divinity” features my favourite. The man is a genius. Insistent, dark, rhythmic, it is now given the space and opportunity to breath here, ably supported by Martins keyboard. Carls drums sound tribal and taut, before exploding almost 3 minutes in and pushing the track to a satisfying close.

“The Dogs of War” now has a much more relaxed feel to it than the original version and is much longer. The aggression of Pat’s guitar has been tempered somewhat, but still retains its malevolence. Heavens to Betsy, Lyndon’s even thrown in a dancey drum beat with an undercurrent of an early 1990’s club bass line bubbling away. Again, the original backing vocals are brought to the fore and used as the lead. However, two minutes in and singer Suty reclaims the track with his primeval growl and the pace picks back up, the repeated call and response like an insane Dictators call to arms on the eve of invasion.

Now, I happen to know from the man himself, that the first three tracks were remixed with what System of Hate might find pleasing, but with the remix of the final track, “Infected”, Lyndon decided to simply please himself. What pleases him, pleases me. It is impossible to get bored of this track. Try it. I guarantee you won’t. Easily the most radically different-from-the-original of all the four tracks, it is a tour de force in what can be achieved with some imagination and a good pair of ears. The flesh, muscle and sinew of the original has been cut away and fed to the dogs (of war) All that remains on the slab is the fettered bones, around which Lyndon has reconstructed his twisted creature. I originally wrote on Facebook that it reminded me of those late 1970’s/early 1980’s John Carpenter soundtracks and even weeks later, I still can’t really put it any better than that. It is perfect night time driving music – chilling, eerie, spell binding. Listening to it, I want to don a bandana and cruise up and down in a cool American car, scaring the shit out of the neighbourhood.

Talking of my neighbours , they’ll tell you I’m no gardener, but I do like to watch things grow and develop and I have been watching System of Hate do that over the last two years. The very idea of an “Industrial Remix” CD was a pleasant surprise to me, but the reality is even better and as an experiment it has thoroughly paid off. Buy it.

Words by Stephen ‘Dollar’ Dalton.

LOUDER THAN WAR - New Artist Of The Day: System Of Hate - Web Link

Barnsley bleak punk purveyors System Of Hate release new EP.

From the bowels of Barnsley comes an unearthly sound that is getting people pretty excited up and down this green and pleasant land. System Of Hate have already racked up an impressive haul of support slots and won many new admirers with their brand of intense, aphotic power-punk, and are set for their second appearance at Rebellion this summer.

System Of Hate sprang from Barnsley punk band Total Confusion in late 2012, making their live debut in early 2013. From there, regular gigs, including support to Sham 69, Goldblade and Vice Squad, culminated with a very well received appearance on the new band stage at Rebellion in 2013 and a batch of new admirers. The band are made up of Pat Crawford (guitar), Dave Sutcliffe (vocals), Shaun O’Neill (bass) and Carl Gulliford (drums). However, after Carl was involved in a serious accident, original Danse Society drummer Paul Gilmartin temprarily stood in and this also resulted in the introduction of Danse Society bassist Martin Roberts who plays keyboards and adds a vital depth to the sound.

The band started working on the new EP Insanity last summer and it eventually came out in spring 2014. The tracks perfectly showcase the rolling malevolent noise that sounds as if Hades has declared war on society and plans to launch the first strike in South Yorkshire. Title track Insanity is a contagious rocker with a growling vocal that sits against a tight sound that stays on the melodic sound of thrash and is lightened by an inspired use of sax. Ashes Of Divinity races along at a decent pace and clearly shows the value of keyboards in the mix. The Dogs Of War will see the audience punching the air and singing along in Blackpool while Infected takes the listener into a bleak, nihilistic world that sadly, is all too familiar. This is great stuff with maybe a hint of Killing Joke and 1919 in there, but also with some unexpected twists that give System Of Hate that vital individuality.

The band have also appeared with their heroes UK Subs, Angelic Upstarts and Discharge as well as becoming involved in an album for Teenage Cancer benefit with the Specialised Project. They have recorded a Madness track, Stepping in Line, for the album which will be released very soon.

System of Hate have some exciting shows coming up including Slamfest in Rotherham with 999 and The Lurkers, support to Dirtbox Disco and an appearance on the Sunday of Rebellion Festival in Blackpool. For more info visit their website.

System Of Hate can be found at their website and on Facebook and Twitter.

All words by Dave Jennings whose Louder Than War author’s archive can be found here. He is also on Twitter as @blackfoxwrexham

System Of Hate - Insanity E.P. - Review By: Rockulus Maximus - Web Link

This is straight forward Punk Rock music with the addition of moody keys adding a novel element. These guys are from South Yorkshire in the UK and are fully versed in what makes strong and poignant Punk. Check out the song titles that grace this extended player for examples – 'The Dogs Of War', 'Ashes Of Divinity' and 'Infected' all provoke imagery and curiosity.

The band is relatively new being formed towards the tail end of 2011 by bassist Paddy O'Neill when he looked in to forming a side project from a band he was in called Total Confusion. With the band being filled out By Sutcliffe brothers Dave (vocals) and Eric (guitar) the momentum was set. Carl Gulliford was comfortable in the drum stool and with the recent addition of Martin Roberts handling keys, the full line-up crackles with a dark and menacing sound representative of a post-apocalypse attitude of unsettled annoyance toward the world around them.

Gathering experience in the studio and in the live environment, they are fast becoming a unit worthy of attention. Gigs with Vice Squad, Sham 69, Goldblade and Peter & The Test Tube Babies amongst many others show their true qualities. Listen to the haunting edge given when they chant "Ashes” in 'Ashes Of Divinity' or the spite injected in to 'The Dogs Of War' to feel where their beating hearts settle. The sound is rough but also easy on the ears as 'Infected' assaults the senses. The wall of guitar is familiar and also appropriate in the context of the other instrumentation including the atmospheric keys, which peep over the shoulder of what would otherwise be contemporary and brash Punk music.

This E.P. contains four tracks which are all short and to the point. The title track has what sounds like a brass section adding a quality you'd be more familiar with if you were listening to Ska. It works well here proving that "less is more” is suitable on occasion. Check out the evil and brief laugh on this track as they raise the tempo to mirror the feeling of 'Insanity'. I'm left wondering whether an entire album by System Of Hate would be too much, or if it would be an intense welcoming experience. I suspect it would be a dark and thoroughly rewarding exploit due to their obvious aptitude, energy and observation. Highly recommended.

System Of Hate – Insanity EP (Retro) - Lights Go Out Fanzine #27-

First off, the CD itself is frickin awesome, made to look like a vinyl record, complete with grooves and a black underside, already I am impressed, this is speaking to me already. Then I spot that they thank Jonny Wah Wah and anyone associated with that man is always worrying! Ha ha, nah Wah Wah, you know I love ya really, in your own unique way! So, musically System Of Hate offer up a heavier industrial punk sound but mix in additional instruments like keyboards and the occasional saxophone. They have a real 80’s punk sound about them which flirts with a darker, industrial sound. Maybe Killing Joke-esque at times and Vice Squad too. Fact is that this is a real dark punk affair, and I’m a fan. I would say this lot would go down well at Rebellion, but it seems that they’re already playing it later this year, so if you’re going, make a visit to see this lot on the Sunday for sure.
Mr. T

Positive Creed D.I.Y. Punk Fanzine Issue #23 - System Of Hate: 'Insanity', CD E.P.

I was highly impressed with their last e.p. but this latest release is even better with a new standard of songs. They stick with the same four track format and each one is a winner and a fine example that modern day punk still exists and matters. The new edition of the keyboards really lifts the System Of Hate sound which reminds me of a mild version of Hawkwind in places. Producer Steve Ellis deserves praise for his skills within the studio and Andy Blower needs to be mentioned for his fine efforts on 'Insanity'. Man, I love this band and the way that they create punk music and put their own stamp on it. Surely an album will follow in the near future and I can't wait to see this lot at Rebellion. (RS) 9/10

facebook link here - Positive Creed
Po Box 777, EX1 9TU, Exeter, England.


System of Hate offer sable sonic spillages from the raw and overlooked recesses of Barnsley and do it with a forthright and oppressing manner. The band bring much experience to the table, an assortment of punked influences and numerous other suggestive sonic experiences that all bode well for the overall future of the unit. Having reviewed one release thus far and appreciated the dinnage I do remember myself asking for a little more variance in sound, the question now remains as to whether or not my request has been met and the band are indeed pushing themselves harder and further. Only one way to find out...

The first explosion of intense dinnage is entitled 'Insanity', a fuckin' superb burst of raged abrasion smoothed throughout with a sax soaked streak that really drills its way into your consciousness. From the opening melee through the liquid aggression that freely pours from a tortured soul down to the last bastard blast this is a bruising affair that emphasises where the bands best elements are found and when they turn up the ill temperament levels fine skewering success is undoubtedly there to be had. A big hitting brute of a number that will beat you senseless and leave you perversely gagging for more. 'Ashes Of Divinity' is a less up front effort and relies on regular nagging bassism, tribal drums, carefully attended guitar and strong snatching gobbage. Atmosphere is high on the agenda as the creeping malevolence of the track unfolds and reveals a dark beating heart within. The production values enhance all and each component of this heavy duty outfit is given full complimentary consideration as well as room to expire and exhibit. A powerful song for sure and one that does well to stand in the shadows of the opening behemoth.

'The Dogs Of War' trundles in before futuristically sliding along on electric beams built with cutting intent. The verses are blistered, the chorus cutlets simple but forthright and effective. The saturation of the sonic landscape is entire, no area is left unmolested and what we get is a very intense listening experience not to be shied away from. Again the song thrives from first to last and all I can do is applaud the obvious upswing. 'Infected' thumps, scuffles, destroys the resistance with its malicious drive that has similarities to its predecessors but has a very toxic bite of its own. A bleak number ingrained with disgruntlement and diseased determination to dim the outlook, crush the optimism, defeat any chances of escape. Consuming cacophony for sure.

System of Hate move onwards, forwards, upwards and increase their effectiveness by simply pushing themselves and honing their set qualities - it has all proved to be a superb state of affairs. This music hits home and has impact, I come away impressed, the only question on my lips is can they maintain it? I reckon so as long as they don't settle on this winning thread and keep the fires stoked with new tuned timbers and inflammable hunger - do it!

SYSTEM OF HATE – INSANITY E.P. Review by Alternative Barnsley 13/03/2014 Web

When System of Hate rose from the ashes of local punk legends Total Confusion at the close of 2012, this self-proclaimed ‘dark punk’ band claimed to be influenced by Siouxise, Birthday Party, and PiL, and although debut EP highlights, Dark Winged Immortal and Am I Evil? were prime slabs of punk, they had more of an essence of The Ruts than their post-punk counterparts. Since then, System of Hate have played a shed-load of gigs all over the UK, including support slots with Angelic Upstarts, UK Subs, Peter & The Test Tube Babies and even had a slot at Rebellion Festival. Last summer, Danse Society’s Martin Roberts joined ranks on keyboards, fleshing out their sound. And now, this month, they released their eagerly awaiting second EP, Insanity.

If you’ve been following System of Hate over the last year, then you’ll be familiar with some of the songs collected here. The good news is that, with the addition of Martin and special guest Andy Blower on sax, System of Hate have created some true punk magic. Within just eleven minutes, Insanity clearly sets in stone the band’s manifesto; a true representation of exactly what the band set out to be from the start.
It’s opening, title-track hit you in the face with the butt of the saxophone from the off. Its energy is instant and the song does exactly what it needs to do in just over two minutes.The backing vocals on the chorus helps showcase the kind of atmosphere the boys give off on stage. It also confirms those Siouxsie influences, reminding me of early tracks like Suburban Relapse and Regal Zone.

Second track, Ashes of Divinity, is one of my favourite live numbers, and it’s Paddy’s bass that is actually one of my favourite things about System of Hate’s sound. The collision of the bass, drums and keyboards are fantastic. Everything has turned up a notch since the first record.
Suty has one of those curious snarling vocal tones that might be a bit love hate. Now I don’t know if it’s the various layers of vocals here or just that his pitch is actually lower this time round, but that snarl seems to have turned to an almighty growl, and I like it even more now.
The Dogs of War is another live favourite. You got that awesome bass again; and this time those keys remind me of The Damned at their darkest. And though you have the gothic theatrics, this political rant is as anthemic as the likes of The Ruts and Sham 69.
Closing track Infected is a new one to me and it’s a fine number to close on. It’s solid System of Hate – the sound of an anti-establishment boots marching over a dystopian gothic landscape.

From the off, System of Hate knew what they wanted to look and sound like, and I’m not quite sure they achieved that on the first record, however good as it was (and it was very good). Now, on the Insanity EP, they’ve up their game and got it bang on! They are a band with a cinematic sound and vision to be reckoned with. 2014 is System of Hate’s year of punk noir!

On Sunday 9th of February - John Robb (Goldblade/Membranes) played us his Louder Than War radio show on Team Rock Radio - click on this link - then click 9th of February - WEB LINK

John Robb (Award winning journalist, Author and boss of Louder Than War, singer with Goldblade and The Membranes.) said of SYSTEM OF HATE -

It’s a great powerful Punk Rock take on the Killing Joke kind of thing. They've got the intensity, the feral power, the tribal drumming. Really great live, a fantastically intense show live and they are good players as well, a good tight band. Also, the songs show a little bit of imagination.

Live Review - 27th Dec 2013 - Leopard, Doncaster - Upstarts/Crashed Out by

Click here -

"First up were local boys from sunny Barnsley, System of Hate. I hadn’t seen them before, but they made a good noise. Growling vocals, wailing guitars, all with a screeching synth background, what’s not to like? If I notice them playing somewhere nearby again I’ll definitely be going along to see them."

Live Review - 2nd Feb 2013 - Clothiers Arms, Elsecar, Barnsley by Alternative Barnsley Web

The real reason for my attendance though was to see Barnsley’s System of Hate. It was only their second live show and as they took to the floor in their regulation all black – no labels, any nerves the four piece might have had were kicked to shit with the opening number Insanity. Garden of Gethsemane is instantly likable dark, hard punk in the same vein as The Ruts but with lyrical themes that are more Danzig or The Birthday Party. System of Hate aren’t your usual Barnsley punks.

The chorus of the brilliant Fractured even has a faint whiff of Welcome to Hell era Venom about it and on one particular song, I thought Dave was singing ‘gutless’ but turns out it was actually ‘godless’ on God is Dead and was kind of better for it. The intro to Zealots Path was as urgent as California Uber Alles was and Sins of Father is a diatribe against Catholicism and/or the government.

Even though I went in there only knowing the four tracks from the EP, I left knowing most of the set because every single song has a memorable hook you can cling on to and here, just like on their EP, my highlight is still Am I Evil?. It’s on that number and songs like Dogs of War, when Dave’s snarl is backed up by those reverb heavy bass-lines and those Warsaw-like riffs that System of Hate are at their best. They add something extra and dark to punk without turning into some kind of parody.

SYSTEM OF HATE – IMMORTAL E.P. Review by Alternative Barnsley Web

SYSTEM OF HATE are a new punk band currently doing the live pub/club circuit. Three of its members were/are actually in Total Confusion, another punk band which had been active since 1978 – give or take the odd decade they had a lengthy hiatus. 2012 sees System of Hate launch their debut gigs alongside a debut record, the Immortal EP.

The EP opens with it strongest tracks. These are the ones that are furthest removed from Total Confusion. There was nothing wrong with Total Confusion – they are a brilliant band, but this is a different band, so it’s better to at least sound different. Dark Winged Immortal instantly has more of post-punk feel, especially in that bass and the hook in the chorus has a similar feel to Babylon Is Burning. And with added dark, comic book themed lyrics, what a great start?! Second track Am I Evil? opens with more of Warsaw-era Joy Division bass line – or could it be The Cramps. Even the production sounds like it’s come from 1979. No bad thing at all. It’s timeless yet fresh because of it. The anthemic backing vocals give it a great edge that you know will come across great live.

The second half of the disc has more in common with Total Confusion material than the first half, albeit darker in tone. Parasites in Paradise is angst ridden, energetic old school punk and Sins of Father could be taken as either an anti-catholic stance but is just as likely to be an anti-bankers rhetoric. It’s a fine cut of prime dark punk.

I reckon this short four song burst works even better than the last Total Confusion album, and that is some feat. The sound has the right balance of the raw, the aggressive, the gothic and to be honest, the timeless. It could have been recorded now or thirty years ago. I think it would have worked better with the first two tracks opening and closing the disc, but that is just my humble opinion. However, if those two tracks are a sign of things to come, then we are in for a very nasty treat.


A band that started at the arse-end of 2011 as a side-line project to the wonderful Total Confusion but now seems to be heading in the direction of becoming a fully functioning entity in its own disreputable right. Some would say that a few of these elderly buggers should know better but hey - once that noise virus gets in the blood I am afraid you are doomed to eternally dabble. Success may come, success may go but...the raison d'etre for the band has very little to do with this flimsy aspect of the music industry. They are here to have fun, knock out a toon or two and get up there and do the business - are there any other reasons? So here is there first eruption - 4 songs of a bleak nature and starting the punctured ball to something akin to rolling.

We push aside the silence with the punishing grind of 'Dark Winged Immortal', a song that darkly drills into the senses with a repetitive persuasiveness mainly driven by an insistent bass line. The pulse of the 4 wired weapon is joined by tidy drums, highly corrosive strings and the expected snarlish vocals. Despite being a somewhat safely does it song the bleak essence and harsh wasteland of doom laden rhythms work and this gets the account of the SOH crew underway. The sable and saturated theme continues with more regular riffage entitled 'Am I Evil'. Gob work commands attention and is well mixed within the weave whilst strings and sticks adopt a similar stance to the previous track thus maintaining a complimentary style and certain degree of consistency. Heavily delivered, satanic and harshly dealt - this is another mid-tempo throb to back up the initial promise.

'Parasites In Paradise' slightly ups the pace factor and gets the drums into a more active roll. The end production here seems a trifle muffled and despite still aiming for the scorched and thudding vibe a few lighter tones wouldn't have gone amiss. Perhaps too similar to its comrades that gives this one the least favourable vote thus far but then again as a stand alone track in the midst of less dense tones I reckon the verdict would be better. Not bad but the band have to be careful not to stick to a recipe they are comfortable with - always stretch the limits dudes. 'Sins Of Father' keeps things unhallowed and devilish with a heavy bass line starting and then being escorted by the usual noise. Verses are terse and chorus moments equally so and we have yet another track in keeping with the set thread. The chance to drop out of sync with a midway break is missed and I consider this a faux pas and a moment gone begging when the band could have given us something awkward to ponder prior to the next release. Again OK but nothing outrageous.

So 4 tracks, the opener the pick of the pops and the 3 remainder ditties consistent and keeping on a one way track. The band have obvious potential and I hope this is the first slab laid down in a long and successful path but...they must push themselves. On the back of this I would certainly offer up a gig and do my bit to encourage progression and get the noise out there. Worth a tootle as always but on the next 4 tracker I expect a variation in the sound. Just to add that this was recorded 'live' at Nafro Studios, Barnsley by Nathan King so all in all not a bad job indeed!