Brutal hardcore punk band Regional Justice Center’s sophomore album Crime and Punishment is due for March 5, 2021 release via Closed Casket Activities. It follows up their 2018 debut World of Inconvenience, as well as a split with Wound Man, a live album and two quick EPs the prolific artist has put out the last few years. Along with the announcement, Regional Justice Center shared two singles from the record, “Absence” and “Inhuman Joy.”
Both new songs are heavy with screamed vocals, dynamic switch-ups and guitar feedback, but they have their differences. “Absence” is faster right out of the gate, switching between a repeated guitar riff and sections with double-time drumming, and “Inhuman Joy” sounds a bit doom-inspired, moving steadily at a significantly slower pace until its explosive ending.
Regional Justice Center is led by a multi-instrumentalist named Ian Sheldon, who started releasing music under the name to express his anger with the American for-profit prison system. Joining him are guitarists Alex Haller and Che Hise-Gattone, with bassist Steph Jerkova. Sheldon made a statement that the new album is more about his place within the institutions that impacted him growing up, “I realized part way through writing that I was making a record about my roots and the way they shaped who I am. The first half of the record is about cause and the second half is about consequence.”
Crime and Punishment was produced by Taylor Young at The Pit Recording Studios. Shelton talked about how Young helped shape the songs on the album, “A lot of times my songwriting can be about deprivation—with grind, power violence, or any short form songwriting it’s about withholding until the right moment to make the most impact. Taylor really pushed me to be more open to those kinds of parts and find even more dynamics in the songs.”
It’s a quick record, with ten tracks clocking out around 13 minutes long in total. Preorders and merch options are available on the label’s website.
Crime and Punishment Track List:
1. Taught To Steal
2. Dust Off
4. Inhuman Joy
5. Sickness On Display
9. Violent Crime
10. …And Punishment