By David Rolland
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By Lee Zimmerman
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Leave it to local punk and metal promotions powerhouse Speedfreek to convince Valencia, California's Infest to fly cross-country to Miami for the band's first show outside its home state. Ever.
Infest's discography is meager, and the band never leaves California. But somehow the group has still reached every punk-rock corner of Planet Earth, inspiring myriad stage dives, countless high-fives, rabid finger-pointing, and every other imaginable pit move.
And now our city's too-good-to-be-true curators of brutal tuneage are making history by flying this legendary unit to South Florida. In preparation for this momentously mosh-worthy occasion, we spoke with Speedfreek's Roger Forbes about why Infest might be the most hardcore band in punk history.
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Infest is so elusive even Roger Forbes hasn't seen the band. "I have a habit of flying all over the country to go to shows," says Forbes, the P. Diddy of hardcore. But even he hasn't seen Infest. "[They] broke up in '96, before I got a chance to see them perform." Hey, if you ask us, the harder it is to see a band, the more that band should be considered hardcore.
Infest invented powerviolence. Roger isn't "sure who the first powerviolence band was or that it even matters." But his job is flying punk bands that are legendary to the point of being mythical for one-off shows in Florida. It's our responsibility at New Times to speculate about unknowable factoids, such as who was the true inventor of powerviolence, a hardcore-metal hybrid genre that cartoonishly pairs grindcore's splatter speed with sludge-metal breakdowns, usually in 30 seconds or less.
Infest predicted the future of punk. "They've influenced so many bands," Forbes says. Talk about an understatement. As we were saying, the Infest guys were playing powerviolence way before Man Is the Bastard formally introduced the term into the punk-rock lexicon. And over the past two decades, they have inspired stage-diving miscreants around the world to play faster, harder, louder with as much dedication to the music and its message as possible. "For those of us who love this music, Infest is where it all started."
Infest always inspires a momentous mosh. You best believe we are training like Rocky Balboa to get ready for the Armoshgeddon that Infest will let loose in Little Haiti. P.S.: We're bringing nunchucks.
Infest has never played outside its home state. We're talking about one of the most revered ensembles of punk speed freaks in the history of punk speed-freaking. Infest inspires hysteria in unwashed youth across the globe. Yet the band has never played a single show that wasn't in its native California. That's hardcore!
Infest wouldn't do an interview with us. That's right — the band refused an interview. "I'm pretty sure they would view it as narcissistic and egotistical," Forbes explains. "I can respect that."