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Mesa Verde are an important band in the history of MTAT. We are very proud today to offer you the “Discography; 2004-2009” for free/pay-what-you-want download.
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I remember seeing them play for the first time in Barcode in Perth, scene of so many important development shows and one of the spiritual homes of east coast hardcore, sometime in 2005 and following them on MySpace, as was the custom of the time, to check out their demos. They were part of a burgeoning and very healthy Scottish hardcore scene championed by the likes of Cold Dead Hands, WeAreTheKids.org, and oopemoscreamo, with a litany of incredible bands like Santo Caserio, The Fall of Boss Koala, Allergo, Kaddish, By My Hands and countless more.
The band played shows with kindred spirits like Louise Cypher, Raien, Yage and Stop It! and, in 2006, released the “Amor Fati” EP on Art For Blind Records. To me, it became an instantly captivating essential document, a a release that spoke to me in ways that hardcore hadn’t done before, with a vulnerability and sliver of light. Seeing them perform at the inaugural Motionfest that year sealed it; Mesa Verde would be a band that I would carry with me forevermore, documenting a difficult period of our collective lives and the wider punk/hardcore community, their coruscating desperate screamo articulating what mere words could not. Beyond the darkness, there seemed hope.
In 2008, I remember standing at the back of Mucky Mulligans as Mesa Verde and Kaddish wrapped up the first Book Yer Ane Fest and having my brains splattered against the wall. That was also the first time that I picked up a copy of the incredible and essential Ecossemo masterpiece “The Old Road” LP on vinyl. I didn’t have a record player at the time but it was needing to listen to this LP and the first Kaddish record (which I believe I acquired the same day) that led to me getting one, a tipping point for what will now be a lifelong obsession.
If there are two bands who, for me, full embody and the spirit of DIY punk/hardcore and inspired me that this (running shows, doing a label, trying to be a progressive part of a wider movement for change, etc) was achievable, then it was Mesa Verde and Kaddish. They revitalised me, sparking a determination and drive in me that abides. I came into the hardcore scene comparatively late, youthful naivety clouding my vision of the bigger picture and our whole interconnection, but I will remain forever thankful for the lessons that it taught me and the inspiration it gave me.
Much has come to pass in the ten years since Motionfest; some of it beautiful, some of it tragic. Mesa Verde played their final show in 2009, moving forward in their personal lives like we all must. What they left behind a 15 track legacy of vital, invigorating screamo/hardcore that still stands up among the greatest in Scottish DIY, and lit a fire in my heart. I can put on the “Amor Fati” EP and be instantly transported back in time, arguably a simpler, more innocent time. That EP moved me in ways I cannot fully articulate but I know what it means. It was inspirational. I’m very proud to carry that spirit in my heart, to call Mesa Verde friends, and hope that I continue to carry that early spark everywhere I go.
We have a limited number of copies of “The Old Road” LP available here.