One of the more obscure 1980’s American hardcore acts, though one of West Virginia’s best-known musical exports, TH’ INBRED released two LPs between 1985 and 1988 and toured the US three times. A politically pointed punk act influenced by the DEAD KENNEDYS, MINUTEMEN, CRASS and of course, BLACK FLAG, their thrashy attack morphed into jazz-influenced hardcore by the end. Critical of the straight edge youth crew mentality (“The Positive Song”) and MTV, the topicality of this band is outlived by its sarcastic wit. Mocking social mores on tracks like Scene Death, singer Art Reco calls out “nazi jocks with cash to spare” on 1985’s Reproduction EP. Their musical ability set them apart from other negative vibe merchants of the era like FLIPPER or NO TREND.
The A Family Affair LP was reissued by a German label but has essentially been out of print for twenty years! Their second album, Kissin’ Cousins, gets into proggier / jazzy areas a la VICTIMS FAMILY. The original cover art featured Jerry Lee Lewis and his child bride, tastefully blocking out their eyes.
Reco’s rubbery, cartoon-ish vocals give way to gravelly barking over the course of this collection, and the music exhibits a wider intrumental range than straightforward thrash. The percussion variety and space-jazzed guitar sustain pre-dates Primus’ wonkiness. Drummer Billy Atwell also played in The Rhythm Pigs and released a solo album, Ferret in a China Shop, in 1988.
The vinyl is split into two separate releases–the first contains the Reproduction EP and A Family Affair, the second has Kissin’ Cousins and the bonus songs. The material was produced by Paul Mahern of The Zero Boys.