Umeå — the European Capital of Hardcore

A perfect storm of coincidences turned a northern small town of Sweden to become the epicentre of the hardcore punk movement in Europe during the late 1990’s. Fuelled by the emergence of the scene in Washington D.C. and an abundance of drug-free youth centres, a whole generation of teens in Umeå channeled their creative and political frustration into hardcore punk.⁠

By luck we stumbled upon some dead stock copies of this ambitiously curated and designed book, documenting the scene and its visual history. Archival photos of sweaty live shows with kids in skate gear, DIY posters and band graphics all convey the adrenaline high of a youth in revolt.⁠

The book was originally produced as an exhibition catalogue for the Umeå Hardcore Archive project arranged and funded by the Popular Movement Archive in Västerbotten. The full archive was exhibited in Umeå in 2014 and boasts over 3000 photographs, 200 films, 600 newspaper clippings and a variety of posters, fanzines, cassettes, vinyls and CD’s - many of which can be viewed in the book.⁠

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