'Dedicated to Babies That Came Feet First' is one the best modern hardcore albums you haven't heard yet. Although Cold World released it back in 2008, most of the myopic music press failed to even acknowledge its existence. Packed with meaty guitar riffs, stark lyrics and compelling nuances, the album sounded like nothing else in its genre. Cold World is busy working on new material and hopefully this time out more people will take notice of their street smart take on hardcore. Noisecreep pulled drummer and lyricist Nick Woj away from his work (cause we're pests like that) and asked him for the five albums that changed his life. As you'll see below, he's got some eclectic tastes.
'Kill 'Em All'
"I'm not going to get into what Metallica album is the best, but this is definitely the one that changed my life. After inheriting this tape (the original one with the Diamond Head covers) from my uncle, I became obsessed not only with metal but with playing drums. In regards to drumming I've always been drawn to style instead of technical skill and that's understandable considering Lars was my first drum hero. Besides Ulrich's unique drum style I was also drawn to James Hetfield's voice. You could almost hear the acne in his melodic yet strained bark."
'Let the Rhythm Hit Em'
Eric B & Rakim (1990)
"I got this and a handful of other rap LPs in a closeout bin for $3.99 when I was super young. Considering my age at the time, you'd think Kid N Play's '2 Hype' and Digital Underground's 'Sex Packets' would have been my favorites of the batch, but I was sucked in by Rakim's monotone voice, calm delivery and vivid lyrics. Many of the songs had the high-tempo energy that rap had in 1990, but at the same time the drums and samples were dark and heavy-hitting, setting it apart from everything sans the Bomb Squad's Public Enemy production. Of course, years later, we would learn Large Professor was responsible for those groundbreaking beats, which was cool to find out."
'New York City Hardcore: The Way it Is'
Various Artists (1988)
"This is the least obscure of the handful of NYHC compilations from this era, which is probably why it's often overlooked as the best. When I was getting into hardcore, the local scene was very politically-charged and my elders didn't seem to care much about older HC so I had to find things on my own. I got this on tape from a local used record shop after seeing the cool cover and a few bands I was already into. This was pre-internet and most of these band's records and demos were pretty unavailable (especially in my area) so this was my first time hearing raw urban stuff like Breakdown, YDL and Krakdown. This tape was a breath of fresh air from the stale, boring and overly-PC sound that was all the rage in Wilkes-Barre, Pa. at the time."
Everything But the Girl (1999)
"In the late-'90s I learned to DJ and I was also really getting into dance music. When I got this album it stayed in my car until it literally broke. I appreciated that Ben Watt's production bounced from deep house to drum 'n' bass and still remained extremely dark and lush. Tracey Thorn's lyrics were what kept me with the record for so long. "When you're down and troubled you don't tell your friends / you don't tell your family / won't let them talk about me." Lines like this struck a deep chord with me. Maybe it's the anglophile within me but I feel like music that is extremely stylish yet at the same time depressing and delicate can only come from the UK."
'The Best of The Smiths'
The Smiths (1992)
"I got this from one of those eight CDs for a penny clubs in the magazines. I think I was in 9th grade. This music and especially the lyrics that came along with it connected to a part of me that '90s NY gangsta rap and straight-edge hardcore definitely did not. Marr's intricate riffs (can you even call them riffs?) were the perfect bed for Morrissey's over-dramatic wailings to roll around on. Although Moz is usually regarded as self-indulgent, when you think about it he's often writing about someone else or from some other tragic figure's perspective. I try to take a cue from his technique when I write lyrics for Cold World. If I only wrote about myself we would eventually end up with songs about rearranging your iPod library every day and having a size Large Polo 5-horsemen tee for trade (but seriously, hit me up with offers)."