roundup! the killer punk and hardcore bands playing afropunk fest in 2017

July 12, 2017

Look, we believe in a big tent punk rock here. But sometimes you just need to throw down in the pit. Whether you want some lean classic NYHC or something new, noisy, and experimental, we got you covered.

Check out the loudest bands playing AFROPUNK Fest worldwide in 2017.


Almost more myth than band, the long-running hardcore pioneers in Burn have only put out a handful of EPs since their founding in 1989. All of them are essential. Frontman Chaka Malik has cut a reputation as one of the most intense singers the scene has ever produced, mixing incisive lyrics with an ear-splitting vocal punch. Splitting the difference between classic NYHC and the alt-metal pioneered by drummer Alan Cage’s Quicksand, the band is as angular as they are jugular.

Junior Astronomers

DIY to the core, the Charlotte NC quartet has built their reputation on a string of EPs and 7 inches, and an unforgettable live show. Terrence Richard’s impassioned howl cracks above the band’s explosions of distortion and rhythm. Their debut LP Dead Weather has already risen to classic status, while their latest Body Language boasts the kind of smart songwriting and emotional performances that legends are made out of.


The OBGMs know how to kick off a party. Their overdriven hooks and fuzzed out synths soar over a tight garage rock rhythm section that re-writes the book on pop punk. Their self-titled debut comes out internationally this summer, anchored by the unforgettable single “Torpedo.” There is no choice but to play them loud.

Pay To Cum

It takes some guts to paint yourselves as the heirs to the greatest hardcore band of all time, but Atlanta’s Pay To Cum has em. They earn the Bad Brains comparison with an intense live show that mixes finger-blistering hardcore and stripped down reggae. Their debut (titled Banned In Atlanta, of course) finds the band doing their take on the classic that gave them their name as well as a run of furious originals. Pay attention to these kids.


Rebelmatic’s been kicking around since 2008, serving up classic punk rock with a side of hip-hop. The NYC-based quartet’s got a little Wu-Tang, a little Mötörhead, and a shit ton of energy. This is music that was made for the pit.

Louder Than Quiet

Mixing post-hardcore songwriting with death metal intensity, Louder Than Quiet more than live up to their name. Songs switch it up from stunning melodic vocal lines to pummeling breakdowns on a dime, leaving you breathless.


Noisy, aggressive, surreal, and political as fuck, Ho99o9 is a little bit like Public Enemy, Nation of Ulysses, and Crass rolled up into a blunt. Their performances push distortion to its limits, while their songs spin out horror stories from the modern American dystopia.


Bloodplums play straight up classic garage and punk from the basements of Atlanta. No posturing, no frills, just the kind of teeth grit garage that makes your bones move.


Stripped down, lo-fi, and thrashy as fuck, the Soweto-based four piece has been tearing it up since 2013. Starting as a skate crew, the Skate Society Soweto decided to take their soundtrack into their hands and formed TCIYF. Their jagged edge skate punk belongs as much on the half pipe as it does in the pit.


B L A C K I E… All Caps, With Spaces blurs the line between noise music, punk rock, and hip-hop. With performances that border performance art and maximize volume, there is straight up nothing like it. Your hearing will never be the same.

Nova Twins

If you’re not already up on the Nova Twins, you’re missing out on one of the most exciting bands to come out in the past few years. Half punk, half grime, their sound is totally in-your-face and totally new. Their debut EP is riot grrrl for the 21st century driven by distorted bass, fierce vocals, and massive drums.

Pure Disgust

Since day 1 DC has been home to some of the best hardcore ever produced. Pure Disgust carries on the tradition with their oi inflected fury. With songs that take aim at the school to prison pipeline, white complicity in police violence, and respectability politics, the band’s self-titled record is a take no prisoners modern masterpiece. It’s stripped down no bullshit hardcore in the best possible sense.