Shirt Stains: Metalcore

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Making your parents mad since 2003.

The New England Metal and Hardcore Festival is just a month away. Though this year’s lineup contains a mixture of metal styles ranging from thrash to power, the fest always manages to cram in a bunch of lower-level metalcore bands. Maybe you’ll see one of these winner’s in the crowd right before the wearer gets spinkicked in the back of the head.

 I Declare War – Keep Calm And Cringe On

I Declare War specialize in terrible merchandise. Sometimes their merch is ugly. Sometimes their merch is unnecessary. Sometimes their merch is in horrible taste. Sometimes their merch is hateful towards women. Whatever the case may be, I Declare War’s merchandise is suited for people that hold on to their detention slips long after the public school system graduated them just so they would leave school grounds.

This I Declare War tank top is for the Edgelady in your life that thinks saying “go suck a fuck” counts as community service. It takes the incredibly annoying and tired “Keep Calm” slogan and goes all up in ya mothafuckin’ face cause IDW is just so crazy, bitch. “Piss on the Cross.” Take that Jesus, and God, and angels and stuff! You can’t handle what I Declare War is putting down! This tank top is so in my face I can practically smell the stale stench of Cheetos chicken fries from Burger King. This tank top should be this generation’s scarlet letter. It should serve as a warning that we have failed as a species and should just start over on one of those newly-discovered planets.

Every Time I Die – Low Teens, High Word Count

There’s so, so, so much going on with this Every Time I Die long-sleeve shirt. People with epilepsy should refrain from looking at it. I think it’s actually giving me a nervous twitch the longer I look at it. Like many other band shirts that cram in as many words as possible, this shirt manages to forget that it’s supposed to be promoting something. “Every Time I Die” is one of the smaller words and could easily be missed in the word slurry that’s regurgitated on the chest. If I didn’t know any better, I’d guess this is a shirt for a band called Ex Lives.

Let’s read the shirt together: “EX LIVES I AM DEATH AND YOU HAVE MARKED MY WORDS BUFFALO EVERY TIME I DIE NEW YORK THE LOW ROAD HAS NO EXITS SHE’S ALL I HAVE LEFT.” That’s…that’s a lot of words. That’s not even counting the highly unnecessary “C’EST LA VIE” on the arm. God only knows what type of alphabet soup is on the back. I don’t know if any or all of these phrases are ETID lyrics, but does it really matter? No. No it does not. I can only assume the three nooses on this shirt represent the English language’s desire to end it all. That’s a dark message, ETID. Maybe stick to more wacky song titles like “Ebolarama” next time.

We Came As Romans – Denimtastic

We Came As Romans have moved on from ruining camouflage to ruining denim. This doesn’t come in M, Lor XL, it just comes in Sad, Sadder, and Elementary School Art Teacher. They didn’t even bother to make it look decent in the photo. They just pulled it out of the hamper, sniffed it, shrugged, threw it on, and went to their court date. This shirt looks like the way most of this country feels right now.

I assume that’s the band’s logo on the front patch, but it could easily be the symbol of some old-school porno company. The back helpfully let’s us know the band’s name and where they are from. Now we know where to send all the hate mail. Throw on some dungarees, a jean jacket, and hop across the border into Canada for that authentic Canadian Tuxedo look. Apologies to our Canadian readers. It won’t happen a-gain.

August Burns Red – Ugly Even By Children’s Standards

It’s not often that you find a band shirt that manages to be ugly in so many different ways. Congratulations to August Burns Red for hitting for the ugly merch cycle. August Burns Red is putting up Hall Of Fame numbers with this shirt. They’re worthy of getting in on the first ballot if you ask me. It would make baseball fans forget all about the steroid era and that Curt Schilling is an absolute shitbag of a human being.

I can’t decide which is worse: the chunky building-style letters for the “August” or the knock-off spicy tortilla chips letter of “Burns Red”. The random brown splatters really send the message home that this shirt has no fucks left to give and even if they did, the fucks were not be given towards making this a batter shirt. Even the dollar store Reptars look like they’re absolutely disgusted with the madness surrounding them. Or maybe they’re about to sneeze. It is kind of hard to tell.

Bleeding Through – *Squint*

Huh? What’s that say? Don’t be scared, little guy. We just want to see which band you’re supposed to be promoting, but are too embarrassed to do so in a meaningful matter. ENHANCE!

Oh, it’s a shirt by the band The Spooky Spiders. Man, they were great opening for The Misfits back in ’82. What’s that? Oh, it’s a shirt for Bleeding Through? Well, why didn’t they say so? Y’know, it would be easier to see the band name if it was printed horizontally across the chest and not vertically in the upper left chest/shoulder area. I sort of hope that this was just a printing error and they just had to tour the country with 1,000 misprinted shirts.

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