When people lament that hardcore 'aint what it used to be,' (especially one of my older, more esteemed friends), I can kinda see where they are coming from. Certainly the message isn't as prevalent anymore, and what with multiple violent straight edge crews popping up and laying the smackdown on anyone and everyone it's not difficult to begin to agree with this thinking. Furthermore, there aren't compilations like this anymore, not only was 'Justice For The Enslaved,' crammed with awesome bands and songs but the proceeds were being used for various causes by the label (the UK's Sure Hand records, who released a 7 inch by Above All)that at that time (animal rights of course being at the forefront) were bound to hardcore, whereas now, its all about printing provocative t-shirts then trying to fight for what's right.
What's interesting about this compilation is the absence of American bands, clearly veganism and straight edge was no longer as strong as it once was in the US but in Europe and elsewhere (South America), it was still strong, still thriving. The more I hear these songs, the more I wish that some of these bands had been able to put out more material. Fortunately the finest on here (Point Of No Return & Reprisal) did, but others, especially Dehumanize & Clouded, contributed their finest material on this compilation and then left us with little else. The former went on to release a MCD in the early 2000's but it was more noisecore and not the creepy blackened hardcore found here. Clouded disappeared without trace, a real shame because the progress from their debut 7 inch/mcd to these tracks promised something really special.
As for the rest, see what you think,
http://www.sendspace.com/file/q5axko - Clouded - Revel In Oblivion
http://www.sendspace.com/file/ajqnoc - Dehumanize - Hung
http://www.sendspace.com/file/60bl4f - Reprisal - Pleniluno
http://www.sendspace.com/file/c4jhk9 - Justice For The Enslaved Vol.1
Sure Hand was a great label, and put out some quality stuff, sadly, all of its out of print, so you'll have to scoure around for it on channels such as www.ebay.com, I will be putting some more stuff up, so watch out for that. Also, you can check out their www.myspace.com/surehandrecords.