HELLBASTARD United Kingdom

HELLBASTARD - Engineering II


What do you get when you mix the influences of legendary bands such as Crass and Slayer? England's HELLBASTARD!!! Since 1985 these guys have been pumping out this crazy blend. The band, which is rightly considered one of the founders of the crust core style, hit the bull's eye with a legendary demo tape, Ripper Crust, in 1986. Since then, much has changed.

In 1991 HELLBASTARD fell apart to be revived again by the driving force of the band, Scruff, in 2008!!! Since then, the band has been firing on all cylinders, added more crossover to their music and touring endlessly in Europe and America. That's why we are happy they could find the time to play again at the Battlefield after four years. Their last album titled "Feral" is just an invitation to dance like a lunatic!!! So let’s dance!!!


Arguably the origins of HELLBASTARD all centred around the live music venue “The Station” in Gateshead. Local bands TOTAL CHAOS, THE REPTILES, MODEL WORKERS and more all came together to find a place where live music could blossom - and blossom it did. We were into heavy music before it became trendy to like it, like we could give a shit what people thought. If all truth is to be told, the Hellbastard legacy began in 1984 as 3 trampy unkempt looking friends who wanted to make heavy music and have pseudo-political ‘support-the-underdog style’ lyrics.

All members had been in other bands and re-grouped to make something a tad more 'active' than their previous incarnations ('Sons of Vengeance', 'The Apostles’, ‘'Feeble Minded' & 'Public Disturbance'). From the off it seemed Hellbastard were ‘too metal’ for the punk kids, and ‘too punk’ for the metal kids. The legendary USA magazine 'Maximum Rock ’N Roll' said it best in a
review in 1986 “Metallica meets CRASS meets SLAYER and the results are quite satisfying.”

Hellbastard are NOT a “crust” band per se, it was the title of the first demo that spread this legacy, and although the worldwide honour is huge, the humble Hellbastard prefer to remain uncategorised. Born from depression families in the darkest grey of the North East of England, Hellbastard made a name for themselves both in the punk & metal communities alike. With a
stable line up of “Scruff” (Guitars/Vocals), Scotty (Bass) and Phil (Drums) the band set about recording their debut demo tape “Ripper Crust”, an 11-song tape that gave birth to the new era of “Crust-Core”.

Like most bands of the early 1980’s the DIY ethic was the way forward and the band saturated every magazine & radio station on planet earth with music and information. It wasn’t long until the mainstream glossies took an interest & Hellbastard began receiving very favourable reviews in Kerrang!, Metal Hammer, Aardschock, Metal Forces, Sounds, N.M.E & so on. Hellbastard were quickly sharing stages with Antisect, Amebix, Sacrilege, Forbidden, Death, Kreator, Napalm Death, Carcass, Bolt Thrower, etc. A little-known fact is that Ginger from the Wildhearts decided to form the band after attending a Hellbastard concert in 1987. Many artists from Sacrilege to Napalm Death to Onslaught to Paradise Lost, Sabbat to Extreme Noise terror freely admitted that the first Hellbastard demo was so ‘chock full’ of riffs that it was easy to play the tape and gather some ‘new inspiration’.

1987 saw the release of a second demo cassette “Hate Militia” which led to them being picked up by local indie label “Meantime Records”. Being young & incredibly naive the band went ahead and signed a very dubious contract, payment alone for the debut album “Heading for Internal Darkness” (1988) was a mere 60 copies of the record given to the band upon release. This
album distribution was Red Rhino/Cartel & sold out in a matter of weeks of its’ release. A mere 2 years or less later Meantime sold (for a sizeable financial amount of 4 figures) the master 1/4” reel of said album to a USA label called “Silent Scream” ... subsequently they released the album on cassette, CD & vinyl.

So, it was 1988 and our new drummer Bry meant that we could write more technical-based material and see-it-through. This was a joy. We kept the same rehearsal studio in Alnwick, Northumberland where the infamous “Ripper Crust” & “Hate Militia” demos were recorded and it was an adventure in itself to get there from Gateshead/Newcastle-Upon-Tyne. Both Scotty and Bry were my friends, which meant we’d see each other regularly OUTSIDE of band activity. I haven’t felt that kind of camaraderie since, well not as intense as that was anyway. We were in each other’s pockets and really didn’t mind at all. We were mates. We’d hang around even if there was no band stuff to take care of, cos that’s what mates do. We recorded these tracks in Leeds at Lion Studios, the same place we recorded the “Heading For Internal Darkness” album only this time we realised that it wasn’t a really good idea to hire a transit van and take a load
of mates as well. Our friend Ian Crow helped a lot with this. We did the whole thing in one day and then went home again. It seemed so simple. We were very well-rehearsed and were really happy with the mixes we left the studio with. All 3 of us paid for the recording and it was a total D.I.Y venture. Afterwards, a deal was secured with a small German record label called “Temple Of Love” and the limited edition 7” EP “They Brought Death” was released in 9 different coloured vinyls and sold out in a few weeks. Label boss ‘Tyman’ was very happy of course. By now, Hellbastard were travelling further and further afield to play shows. The BBC Radio 1 DJ Sir John Peel introduced Hellbastard to thousands of listeners and was a huge fan, single-handedly bringing Hellbastard into the homes of the unsuspecting public! With no management & sheer determination the band played in no less than 16 different countries in less than 3 months.

1989 saw Hellbastard signed to the legendary label “Earache Records”, home of friends like Carcass, Bolt Thrower, Morbid Angel & Napalm Death. Their follow up album “Natural Order” (LP/CD/Cassette) was very well received in the major press. Every magazine on planet earth wanted to interview Hellbastard & the band were inundated with concert applications. One visit to Switzerland saw the band joined by Venom drummer 'Abaddon', although it was actually Jed Wolf of local Neat records band Atomkraft who took drum duties on this one-off festival. The band were receiving around 150-200 pieces of mail per week (all answered with a personal note on very professional looking band letterhead and ‘with compliments’ slip). The “Natural Order” album sold like hotcakes, among smaller headline tours and touring with Napalm Death and Carcass only helped with sales and promotion.

Along came 1991/2 and this saw Hellbastard record brand new demo tracks for the follow-up album to “Natural Order”. Despite offers from various record labels and booking agencies, Hellbastard temporarily split up in 1992, due to situations beyond the band’s control.

2008 saw a reformation of Hellbastard, and the same year “The Need to Kill...” album was released via Germany’s “Civilisation Records”. This led to a huge spate of shows and a headlining tour of Europe which took in 15 countries on a 2-month tour. A few months later into 2009 saw the band record the “Eco-War” EP and this was again released along with “The Need to Kill...” on “Selfmadegod Records”. Now the band were again sharing stages with old mates Napalm Death and Bolt Thrower, as well as Anvil, Tryptykon, St.Vitus, Corrosion of Conformity, Eyehategod, Pig Destroyer, Converge, Morbid Angel, Macabre, Wolfbrigade and Agnostic Front. A huge American headlining tour followed inbetween playing prestigious festival dates like “Maryland Death fest”, “Ieperfest" and “Punk Illegal” etc. Taking advantage of modern technology Hellbastard ventured into the video/audio field & among other promo films created visual back-ups for the tracks “Pylons II” (2008), “Sea Shepherd” (2009), “Slough Feg” (2008), “Arcadia” (2011), “Engineering Human Consciousness...” (2013), “We Are Coven” (2015).

A return to the studio saw the “Sons of Bitches” EP (2012) receive a critical press acclaim that was never experienced before. In between another huge headlining USA tour and many festival dates and shows at home and abroad, Hellbastard recorded the brand new (2014/15) album “Feral” featuring special guests Andy Sneap (Sabbat/Hell) and Rob “The Baron” Miller (Amebix/Tau Cross). Most recently (2016) the band have just performed to a sold-out venue in Berlin (Kopi-Koma-F) and the infamous “Obscene Extreme” fest in Czech Republic.

Hellbastard thanks for being who you are:

Paul and Trev at Chaos Control, Humphrey, Padda R.I.P ☠️, Smitt Ratbiker & Lynn & Harry, Tinka & Latikka, Anne & Leipzig Black Label, Dennis & Koma-f/Kopi Berlin, Massimo De Prenda & Erry Rollins, Warren White, Dean Whitby, Scotty & Bry, Andy Martin & Kielan (Unit), Malek & Insurgency & every single insect, animal & tree on planet Earth.



Release date Release name Media
2019 To the dead & The Dying MC (TAPE)
2015 Feral CD
2015 Sons Of Bitches 12” Ltd. Edition Test Pressing
2015 To The Dead & The Dying 12” Picture-Disc
2014 Engineering Human Consciousness... Ltd. Edition 7”
2012 Sons Of Bitches 12"
2011 Sons Of Bitches CD
2009 Eco-war CD, EP
2009 The Need To Kill CD
2009 Heading For Internal Darkness LP
2009 Sea Shepherd
2009 Discography 1986-1988 CD
2008 Ripper Crust LP
2008 The Need to Kill LP
2000 The Good Go First LP
1998 Blood, Fire & Hate CD
1998 Heading For More Darkness CD
1997 In Grind We Crust CD
1996 They Brought Death LP
1993 Ripper Crust LP reissue LP
1992 Situation Violent DEMO
1991 Grindcrusher Double LP LP
1990 Natural Order CD/LP/CASS
1990 Heading For Internal Darkness CD, LP, MC (TAPE)
1989 They Brought Death 7" EP
1989 Earache Demo #3 DEMO
1989 Natural Order CD, LP, MC (TAPE)
1988 Thrashing a Dead House 12”
1988 Heading for Internal Darkness LP
1987 Hate Militia DEMO
1987 Civilised? LP
1986 Ripper Crust DEMO
1985 Massacre DEMO


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