Boomkat Product Review:
Doomcore pioneers and proper rave rotters Fifth Era are finally subject to a reissue programme thanks to the efforts of Canada’s excellent Forbidden Planet.
Originators of the (relatively) slow, morbid hardcore techno sound currently hybridised with Congolese rhythms by Nkisi, Fifth Era are a squad of squat party ravers from the Czech Republic and South London who turned the party dark from 1997 with their potent style of negative ecstasy. This first part of a very necessary reissue series rounds up four highly sought-after bangers from their early years that are sure to give keeling flashbacks to anyone who frequented free parties, teknivals or squat parties during that era.
Following a 2019 tape reissue of Fifth Era’s debut album by Oliver Vereker and co’s Endangered Species label, this new comp hustles four tunes made c. 1997-2004 that would cost an arm and a leg to pick up 2nd hand, if you can find them. It opens with the spine-freezing glory of ‘5 Minutes After the Pill (Fifth Era Remix)’, which may very well be a DJ Scud production if Discogs isn’t bullshitting (he was a regular at Praxis’ Dead By Dawn parties, to be fair) and also takes in the sleazy glee of ‘Grieve with Me’ for the rave sadists, before they properly come up off whatever thumb-sized line they just took with the ravenous pound of ‘Untitled’, and then clock out with the signature, salty synth tone and back-breaking buck of ‘Zombie Raver’, which brings back fond memories of K’d-up pals falling face first into mud at 6am in South Manchester circa the same time these trax were made.