Wretched / Indigesti – Split (1982)

January 11:th 2013 – Essential early Italian hardcore

Wretched / Indigesti – Split

Not On Label – – 1982 – 7″

There are various things that make record collectors go frenzy. In my case it’s for sure first presses, but another thing is the inserts. Frankly – I can’t own a record with missing inserts – the few I got in my collection just makes me pissed. A rather turn down an opportunity to buy a record than owning an incomplete release. Psychiatrists have without success tried to treat my condition. In the case of this record, I have never seen a copy where I’m 100% sure that it hold all the 3 original inserts. So when I stumbled into this one, and the price was acceptable, I bought it and here it is!

This EP not only ranked high among collectors of hardcore punk. The raw thrashy sound and radical lyrics also make it a much respected record among the hardcore fans. Released already in 1982 it’s the first ? Italian hardcore release. Both bands were inspired by the UK scene and for sure Discharge. Listening to Indigesti there are some influences from the US scene and certainly the Dischord sound. Both bands are from Northern Italy, Indigesti from Vercelli outside Torino and Wreched from Milano. I have noted that in a few articles about these bands there are some willingness to connect Wretched to the idea of Brigate Rosse. It’s a quite stereotyped notion that might score some interest. I believe the truth is rather that the first wave of hardcore bands had a deeper connection with the historical anarchistic formations and trends in Italy. This goes back a 100 years starting with people like Errico Malatesta. As bands they had to “import” less political standpoint compared to similar bands in other counties. Also some the views of the Italian hardcore scene was to some extent “less” radical for the public in heavy industrialized cities like Milan as the communist based trade unions has a lot of power and influence.

Wretched started already in 1980 and was involved in Centro Sociale Virus that opened on Via Correggio in Milan. It exploded with the Spring Offensive where a lot of bands played for a large audience. Supporting each other, Virus had people fixing concerts, publishing books, zines and records etc. I don’t know the details but after a few years they got some issues with the city or the owner of the building and moved to a couple of other places until it all busted in the end of the 80’s.

I will admit that Wretched on this record is not the tightest band. But the furious vox, speedy songs and a really “direct from the rehearsal studio” sound is just awesome. Hardcore is for me much about emotions and less about technique. As a band they had the motto: , translation -Chaos, not Music. They are doing the best to honor that motto on this EP. Wretched was also on the a Bad Compilation Tapes but I have not heard it. Later they released the In Nome Del Loro Potere Tutto E’ Stato Fatto.. in 1983 and Finira’ Mai? in 1984. All great!

Indigesti is tighter and plays with less distortion and have a cocky vocalist (Rudi Medea) that I like. As Wretched, Indigesti also made a tape in 1982. The band quit already in 1983 but re-united later and put out a couple of (strange) albums. If you would ask me which of the bands is the best on this EP, I say it’s not possible to answer. Today I like Indigesti most, but I’m sure I will favor Wretched next week and then favor Indigesti again a few weeks later.

The Italian scene has a few great hardcore bands in the early 80’s. As I wrote this article I got the both the EU’s Arse first EP and the Declino EP from the and put them on the turntable. Both are highly recommended, assuming if you liked Wretched and Indigesti. Sadly my early Italian records are all in crappy condition so I decided to upgrade them. Hopefully I will post both EP’s mentioned above fairly soon.

I mentioned earlier that there are three inserts for this release. The truth is that some copies is said to have a fourth Indigesti insert (two pieces of paper, printed on both sides). I spoken with some hardcore Italian collectors that was around already in 1982 and they have not seen this insert, physically. For me it’s still unclear if these inserts actually came with a few records as they were sold or of some collectors just added the extra insert later. Futhermore – a few copies came with some stickers on the plastic cover which can be seen on the Good Bad Music site. There is a nice re-issue (with red labels) available. It got nice repros of the three inserts.

Full EP: ♬ Wretched side – Schiavo Del Sistema / Promesse / Fino In Fondo / Se Ne Fregano / Il Loro Stato / Usa La Tua Rabbia (MP3 320 kbps)

Full EP: ♬ Indigesti side – No Al Sistema / Crea Veleno / Mai / Polvere Fastidiosa / Mass Media / Detesta (MP3 320 kbps)

Click on the images to expand them to higher resolution. As usual all images and audio clips is from my record.

Stamped dust sleeve with labels visual

Indigesti insert

Wretched insert – 2 pieces of paper


  1. leo

    i’ve never read any of those articles you mention about a BR-wretched connection… that sounds just absurd and a bit silly! and i’m quite sure you havent read it on italian ‘zines. wretched were anarchists and against violence (if you check the inserts from their records, besides the (A)’s, you will also see the peace symbol!), while the BR were communists/marxists and definetely PRO-violence! anarchists and communists, at least in italy, have always been completely opposed (except maybe in very few sitautions, like big demonstrations against war or NATO army bases, where both anarchists and communists (but also, say, catholics…) can march together).
    a funny note: don’t remember if this was reported by Jumpy Velena or Laura (from RAF punk), but: when the police raided some BR houses, they found some really shitty music (cassettes and records of the worst pop italian singers), while the german police found from the RAF houses GREAT stuff like amon duul II records ah ah! : )

  2. Marco

    I agree with Leo, and I confirm the story about BR music stuff

  3. the editor

    Hello, I am not the one stating a valid link to BR, the enemies do. What I say is that there was a strong radical communist movement in that part of Italy. The same is valid for certain part of Sweden, France and UK, etc. It’s was in many cases areas with heavy industries or rural mining area. So there is s link to an environment of radical ideas. The articles (or clips) are from people who try to dis-credit the bands. Many governments do the best to link angry, outspoken but pacifistic to terrorist movements. It’s a way to marginalize them. The bands that we talk about are anti-war and anti-authorities. The enemies however do what they can to discredit anything that threatens the power balance. One way to do so it to link them to BR (in this case). In Sweden we had this debate linked to the animal right movement and the bands supporting (Umeå in the 90’s). It also happened when the EU top meeting was held in Gothenburg in 2001. The police provoked the demonstration and it all ended in a rally and the people open fire to the demonstration. Also here the politicians and the police defended the shooting of protestors saying them being out-law criminals.
    I can see from the two comments above that my writing has been unclear and misunderstood. I hope this text clarify things.

  4. leo

    hey Editor! my note wasnt against you, of course! : ) and it was clear for me that you have just “mentioned” those articles, and that isnt your point of view… i’ve just said that 1) i wasnt aware of those articles/never read them, and 2) that the situation was VERY different, but indeed you seem to know already, since you wrote also “I believe the truth is rather that the first wave of hardcore bands had a deeper connection with the historical anarchistic formations and trends in Italy”, which is true. the italian communist party (PCI) was very strong back them, as well as other communist/marxist oriented groups, including the BR. but yeah, anarchists and punx were just something ELSE. cheers!

  5. leo

    oh and i have this one too for trade or sale, all 3 inserts included, very beautiful sleeve, can send pics of course.

  6. the editor

    I will mail You!

  7. leo

    you have my email, right?

  8. Chano

    A coupla corrections: 1) the first Italian HC rec is most probably the “700 Fascists” 7″ ep by C.C.M., released in 1981 2) Wretched were formed in October 1981. I don’t know about the BR connection, but it sounds pretty unlikely to me.

  9. the editor

    Thanks for the feedback on the first hardcore. Also – about the BR connection. I did not mean the band in specific, I was refering to other articles and writes basically the same as you do. It’s a stereotyped connected even if it would be idiology.

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