Earthmover's earliest rumblings took place in late 1994, forming from the ashes of Detroit crossover stalwarts Scruffy Tearaways. The band gained a strong local following via two demo tapes and energetic live shows that hit listeners with a heavy and honest approach to hardcore. A three-song 7" on one-shot label Autonomy Records was released in 1995, featuring the group's early singalong show closer, "Abuse." Their first full-length, Themes From Everyday Life, soon followed, released on guitarist Andy Dempz's +/- Records imprint. Digital issues of the album included a one-tracked live set that demonstrated Earthmover's power and chemistry outside the studio. Around the time that Themes From Everyday Life hit the streets, the constant rotation of Earthmover's rhythm section began, with members of Trephine and Universal Stomp among the cast. The group carried on, making compilation appearances and sharing a 7" with Belgium's Facedown. Earthmover's underground following had swelled considerably by the time +/- released their second full-length, Death Carved in Every Word, in early 1998. Unlike so many of their hardcore peers, the band broke up at the top of their game, playing a decided final show that fall. Dempz went on to form the political thrash outfit Bloodpact and guitarist Mike Hasty formed Walls of Jericho. The urgent and intense hardcore sound that informed Earthmover is abundantly present in both groups.
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