First-wave hardcore fans may have trouble conceiving of hardcore (formerly “hardcore punk”) existing in 2011. What started out as a subculture of the maladjusted and praxis of social resistance has become a folk culture all its own. In the early 1960s, young people didn’t hesitate to don flannel, pick up an acoustic 12-string and bang out tunes Woody Guthrie made popular 30 years prior. In 2010 bad haircuts, fuzzed-out SG copies and Agnostic Front records may not mean what they did in 1982, but they still mean something. Despite recurring invasions from major labels, wannabe major labels and art-school kids looking to latch on to their next post-emo phase, hardcore remains a vibrant subculture for young and old.

Old folks and other cynics seeking proof that hardcore still turns out envelope-pushing, relevant rock and roll need look no further than the fruits of the last decade. From the crossover thrash revival to renewed influence in the mutant strain known as powerviolence and experimentation with prog and jazz, the hardcore of the aughties holds its own with any other decade.