The Polish label Selfmadegod is on top of things when it comes to staying current on the grind genre while also making sure its history is never forgotten. In terms of the latter, The Grind Years is a real treasure. Boston legends Psycho have recorded a slew of records since the early ’80s, but most of them were split releases with other bands, along with various 7-inches. This set collects a whopping 53 tracks from those sources, as well as tacking on in enhanced format five live videos from their tour of Australia in 1992.
Starting out as more or less a punk band before evolving into grind, Psycho shared many of its releases with the likes of Anal Cunt, Meat Shits, Nasum, Satan’s Warrior, and so forth. Those splits are given generous time here, so lost classics like “Predator,” “Roast Beef,” “Douche Bag Rules,” “Sore Rectum” (not to be confused with “Sore Scrotum” or “Crushed Genitals,”) are abundant on this set.
And there is no respite. All you get is a relentless, scarring guitar riffs that only get more sludgy, though a bit slower and darker, as the band matures, along with sledgehammer drumming and a pissed growl delivered with a nod and a wink by the great Johnny X. Psycho was — and still sometimes is, when they get together — one of the heavyweights of Boston punk. The Grind Years is a fun, brutal love letter to a time, a band, and to a sound that you either love or hate but can’t ignore.