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Posts Tagged ‘Missouri’

Descendents: Live At The Foolkiller in KC, MO 08-26-85

March 3rd, 2009 6 comments

The three years after Milo Goes to College was released seemed like an eternity in my life, so in 1985 it was hard to believe that the Descendents had actually gotten back together and that I was going to see them. Unable to find anyone else driving up from Lawrence to catch the show (it was a Monday night, most everyone I knew was 16 and car-less, etc), I somehow managed to cajole my friend Andre into coming down from KC to both pick me up and take me back home that night. It was worth it.

This was the Milo Aukerman, Bill Stevenson, Ray Cooper and Doug Carrion lineup (listen for Doug doing his “Scoobies” right before the band plays a larval version of “Enjoy”) and though it was their first tour they were obviously already “road tight”. While seen from the vantage of 2009 there are a couple of surprises here and there (“Mr. Bass”, “Shattered Milo”, the screamy vocals on “Enjoy”) mostly the set was about what you’d expect it to be: a killer display comprised of favorites off of the “Fat” E.P., Milo Goes to College and the just-released I Don’t Want To Grow Up album.

That said, despite the high energy level of the night (the Micronotz set included — check it out here) the crowd was really pretty reserved throughout. In fact aside from a couple dudes who slammed their way through “Kabuki Girl” and a few other songs, Andre and I were the only people anywhere near the stage for a good 95% of the Descendents’ set (which is why Milo thrust the mic our way during “Hope” and you can hear Andre warbling “You’ll be the only onnnne”). Weird huh? It’s kind of hard for me to reconcile this with my memories of the next three or four times I would see them in Lawrence at the Outhouse (always super-packed shows), but in 1985 the speed of Punk Rock was moving pretty fast — maybe people just needed to be reminded.

In fact for added and somewhat embarrassing context, here’s the review I printed in my fanzine “Room 101″:

Descendents show review from Room 101 #8
Click to enlarge

Still, what a cool night. The bands were great, the ride there and back was a blast, and the songs were fantastic. I played this tape all Fall and Winter long, and though I almost feel foolish admitting how much these tunes (and others) helped get me through my teens, the truth is that they did. At 16 I was a little punk kid in search of some pop-smarts and lusty-but-achingly-heart-on-sleeve lyrics; clearly no one in 1985 could have delivered better on that than the Descendents. Thanks guys!

Descendents: Live At The Foolkiller in KC, MO 08-26-85 Set List
Set List: Click To Enlarge
(Note: though listed here, they actually never played “Rock Star”,“I Wanna Be A Bear” or “I’m Not a Loser”.)


Descendents: Live At The Foolkiller in KC, MO 08-26-85 (192 kbps)
01 Theme (1:18)
02 Descendents (1:39)
03 I Don’t Wanna Grow Up (1:24)
04 Kabuki Girl (1:12)
05 GCF (2:00)
06 Pervert (1:48)
07 My Dad Sucks (1:19)
08 Weinerschnitzel (0:12)
09 Mr Bass (2:16)
10 Silly Girl (2:17)
11 Christmas Vacation (2:39)
12 Hope (2:27)
13 Bikeage (2:07)
14 Wendy (Beach Boys) (2:04)
15 Myage (2:22)
16 Marriage (1:45)
17 Suburban Home (1:51)
18 I’m Not A Punk (3:52)
19 Enjoy (1:38)
20 Shattered Milo (3:00)
21 Catalina (4:42)


Oh and hey! At the end of the show be sure to listen as Keith Patterson reads the lineup of gigs set to go down over the next week in KC:

Touring: Die Kruezen, The Offenders, Killdozer, Sonic Youth, Flaming Lips.

Locals: Orange Doe-Nuts, Slabs, Lard & Vegex.

We really had it pretty fucking good.

Battalion of Saints: Live At The Foolkiller in KC, MO 06-18-85

January 27th, 2009 14 comments

I first picked up the Battalion of Saints Fighting Boys EP back in 1983 at the great Starship Records in Tulsa, Oklahoma after being turned on to them by some Bartlesville friends of mine. Being overly enthusiastic 14 year olds, when together we would sometimes call the phone number the band had listed (for booking purposes) on their lyric sheet just so that we could, you know, chat and tell them how swell we all thought they were. Amazingly they didn’t tell us to fuck off, and later on I’d run information gleaned from these phone calls as “Updates on Battalion of Saints” in my fanzine Room 101 (the one here dates from issue #2, early 1984). Battalion were one of the few “metallic tinged” Punk bands that got the mix exactly right for my tastes and over the years I would continue to slavishly pick up any and all releases of theirs I could find, spinning them for hours on end.

Flash forward to summer 1985: by this time the Bats had released their first full LP Second Coming (containing several slightly slicker re-recordings of tunes from the demo tapes, singles & comp tracks already out there) and were booked for a show at the Foolkiller in KC on my 16th birthday. For some reason this and a few other gigs around mid ’85 got held in the basement of the building and though the sound was a bit dodger (George’s vocals suffered the most) I personally liked the “cave vibe” as well as the fact that it didn’t take as many people to fill up.

After sets by the Slabs and the Orange Doe-Nuts, Battalion of Saints finally got up and were ready to crank out what I’d been waiting forever to hear live. There was some more flash around the edges (check out those “Van Halen style” licks on Fighting Boys) and the set was cut a bit short thanks to several strings breaking, but I had no complaints — they were just a great fucking band and as cool in person as they’d been over the phone.

You’ll find a couple of unreleased tunes here; “Number One” (vocals sadly buried but helpfully introduced with “This is a new one, uh it’s called ‘Number One‘, thank you!”), whatever Track 13 is actually entitled (could be a cover for all I know, but a hot song either way), and the last thing which is a quick message that (now deceased) guitarist Chris Smith recorded for me to give to Oklahoma chum Brendan and his sister “Astri or Austry or whatever the fuck her name is.” A great night, a great band and a great birthday present.

Note: Swell guy and fellow KC punk (not to mention letterpress whizz) Bryan Hutcheson thinks he still has pictures from this show — stay tuned in case they materialize.

Battalion of Saints: Live At The Foolkiller in KC, MO 06-18-85
Click To Enlarge

Battalion of Saints: Live At The Foolkiller in KC, MO 06-18-85 (note wrong date)
Click To Enlarge (Note incorrect date on flyer)


Battalion of Saints: Live At The Foolkiller in KC, MO 06-18-85 (192 kbps)
01 Club Noise/Warming Up (0:12)
02 Second Coming (2:33)
03 Right Or Wrong (1:33)
04 Fighting Boys (1:47)
05 No More Lies (2:26)
06 No Time (2:13)
07 My Mind’s Diseased (2:42)
08 Beefmasters (1:58)
09 Cops Are Out (2:14)
10 Number One (1:58)
11 Animal In Man (1:32)
12 Holy Vision (2:28)
13 Track 13 (2:26)
14 Fair Warning (1:30)
15 (I’m Gonna) Make You Scream (2:14)
16 Message To Brendan (0:33)


7 Seconds: Live At The VFW#18 in KC, MO 09-21-84

January 16th, 2009 8 comments

I thought LA was rough but you guys make them look like a bunch of wimps!

You could accurately describe the 1984 me as something of a raving little straight edge kid, and as such 7 Seconds spoke pretty directly to my brain. Their speed, their melodic “woah-oh” vocals, their lefty-style personal politics, their “regular guy” look, their fairly “nuance-free” lyrics — all of it worked its magic on me in a big way. I was so smitten by their first two 7″ records (the era that is still my favorite — what a drag that the “United We Stand”/”Old School” sessions got held back for so long) that I even wrote Kevin Seconds a fan letter in 1983, promptly hanging his gracious response up on my wall:

Kevin Seconds terribly polite 1983 letter to Jason
Click To Enlarge

Given the above it’s fair to say that this night (the Samhain half of which I already wrote about and shared audio from here) found me pretty amped up, and happily 7 Seconds didn’t disappoint. They were fast, tight, passionate and engaging, and even with the spookiness of Samhain waiting in the wings it seemed as though the crowd did their best to respond in turn (for example it was the most neighborly large-scale slamming I’d seen at the VFW to date; plenty of girls and every felled dancer quickly helped up). To top it all off the guys themselves were all friendly to a fault, and Kevin sold me a copy of the recently released Positive Force comp single “Nuke Your Dink” himself, helpfully (and correctly) mentioning how great he thought the No Deal track was. While 7 Seconds’ later musical ventures turned out not to really be my thing (though logical in context of the myriad twists and turns 80′s Punk Rock was to take), this was still a really fun night and the best I would ever see them play — I’m pleased to be able to share it with the world.

7 Seconds sticker, 1984
The sticker that Kevin gave me with the “Nuke Your Dink” single (Click to enlarge)

One kinda funny thing I always think about in relation to this show happened on the ride home with my good friend (and regular show-going punk rockerist) Pete Haney. He asked me what Kevin meant when he ended his introduction of the song “Aggro” with “…’cause you guys are aggro”. I told him that I thought it was some kind of compliment based on all the energy the crowd was putting out, and that I’d heard him use that term in interviews to indicate “positive aggression” or whatever. “Oh,” Pete said, “I thought that maybe because this was the Midwest and there’s so much agriculture out here he was just calling us a bunch of farmers.”

7 Seconds: Live At The VFW#18 in KC, MO 09-21-8
Click To Enlarge


7 Seconds: Live At The VFW#18 in KC, MO 09-21-84 (192 kbps)
01 Strength (1:59)
02 Definite Choice (1:20)
03 Redneck Society (1:11)
04 Five Years Of Lies (1:39)
05 Drug Control (0:44)
06 Bottomless Pit (2:22)
07 In Your Face (1:44)
08 Bully (2:23)
09 Wasted Life (2:26)
10 Regress No Way (1:59)
11 I Have A Dream (1:33)
12 Straight On (0:44)
13 This Is The Angry (Part 2) (3:43)
14 Colorblind (3:04)
15 Aggro (1:57)
16 How Do You Think You’d Feel (2:56)
17 Not Just Boys Fun (1:36)
18 Anti-Klan (1:50)
19 Comitted For Life (1:52)
20 The Crew (2:17)
21 Racism Sucks (3:54)
22 No Authority (1:16)
23 99 Red Balloons (Nena) (Incomplete) (3:17)

No Heroes: Live At The Foolkiller in KC, MO 06-23-84

January 13th, 2009 12 comments

No Heroes stickerNo Heroes flyerNo Heroes flyer

No Heroes flyerNo Heroes flyerNo Heroes flyer

I first saw No Heroes at a 6/2/84 Foolkiller gig opening up for Winnipeg, Canada’s Personality Crisis. While I was ready for Personality Crisis to tear it up (and they did — what a fucking amazing and underrated band. Check out the book “Warm Beer and Wild Times” to read their whole story), I was pretty shocked when No Heroes just came roaring out of nowhere to play a killer set. Despite hailing from Omaha, their sound was unlike what I was used to from most other Midwest punk bands of the day — though some Toxic Reasons comparisons came to mind they also had at least a few SoCal sounding numbers that wouldn’t have been out of place on an early 80′s Posh Boy release. After their set was done I gushed about how good I thought they’d been (both in person and later in my ‘zine), and struck up a brief/intermittent flyer trading relationship with their drummer Mark Blackman, the results of which you can see represented above.

The show I’m sharing here is actually from a few weeks later though, when they opened for the Freeze (who were great of course; there’s audio from that show and a rather personally embarrassing story forthcoming). To be honest, compared to the earlier gig No Heroes weren’t as on fire here; they battled some gear problems (which I remember them being pretty pissed about later) and had longer gaps between numbers as a result. Still while it maybe isn’t as tight of a performance as the first time I caught them, the upside is that this set was a longer one and more of their songs made it to tape — that’s good news because while the band stuck it out at least another year after this gig (i.e. there might be a demo or something floating around), for all I really know this could be your only chance to hear the pride of Omaha circa 1984. Certainly in retrospect I wish I’d had the prescience to record every local and small band opening the shows I taped — so many of those songs are probably lost forever.

To refresh my memory for this post I did some internet poking and found that a thread running through much of the early Omaha punk scene seems to have been artist and drummer Mark Blackman. Prior to No Heroes he was in a band called Self Gratifukation and later did time in several other groups (Apathy, Nuns with Guns, etc) before settling into his current gig Bad Luck Charm. These days guitarist Phil Thompson is playing with Snakey Billy (with Seth Kirschman, ex-vocalist for Apathy), and if my memory serves me right Omaha producer Jim Homan (yeah, he was ALSO in Apathy) was the second guitarist here. So who was on bass? For the life of me I can’t recall (Jim’s brother Michael, also ex-Apathy? Confirmed! Yes.)– there’s gotta be a ton of folks out there who can fill in more details here, so please feel free to set me straight.

Update from Michael Homan via the comments: The lineup was Mark Blackman on drums, Dave Loomis on guitar 1, Jim Homan on guitar 2, Michael Homan on bass and vocals.

Also: this may only be tangentially related, but it would appear that there was recently a large Omaha punk reunion show which amazingly enough my old pal Meghan (from Empty Records, the Rat City Rollergirls, and other general coolness) looks to have been heavily involved in! You can read about and see video and photos from the event here, here, & here among other places. Oh, and be sure to look here for a bunch of old flyers and pics; it’s a pretty amazing archive!

No Heroes: Live At The Foolkiller in KC, MO 06-23-84
Click to enlarge

No Heroes: Live At The Foolkiller in KC, MO 06-23-84
Click to enlarge


No Heroes: Live At The Foolkiller in KC, MO 06-23-84 (192 kbps)
01 TV Preacher (3:06)
02 Read Between The Lines (2:42)
03 Ban The Klan (2:40)
04 Media Burn (2:21)
05 Brainwashed (2:53)
06 Screw Religion (2:13)
07 ASOPB (4:04)
08 Fuck You Jim (0:20)
09 Nothing’s Left (2:26)
10 Thing’s Gotta Change (1:55)
11 Butcher And Murder (1:29)
12 What’s The Cost (3:24)
13 Fun Outta Life (2:15)
14 Once Upon A Time There Was Hiroshima (2:16)
15 Social Reject (3:56)
16 Judgement Day (1:22)
17 Proud American (2:54)
18 Seven Steps (2:14)

Marginal Man: Live At The Foolkiller in KC, MO 07-03-85

January 11th, 2009 4 comments

You know, Marginal Man always kinda reminded me of the original Alice Cooper group. Something about the nighttime vibe a lot of their music had going on, and even some of Steve Polcari’s vocals — there was just a certain variety of cool happening in their sound that you didn’t hear much of at the time, and straight away I liked it.

All that had been released when they played this show was the Dischord 12″ “Identity” (well, and the Artificial Peace song “Someone Cares” which they do here), but as you’ll hear from the between song banter their follow up LP “Double Image” was ready to go, and surprisingly enough there are even a couple of tunes that would later turn up on their self titled Giant Records release from 1988. Still for me the big shocker was their closing cover (enigmatically introduced as “another band’s song”) of “Black Magic” off of the 1984 Joe Wood-era TSOL LP “Change Today?”! At the time I scarcely knew anyone else besides me who liked that album (this being the start of the “without Jack it’s crap” backlash), so it was a complete surprise when they pulled it out of their hat.

Aside from the vocals getting lost here and there (you could say that the guitar dominates), the sound is pretty good on this recording, so if you’re a fan you should enjoy this one.

For added context, here’s a rather enthusiastic review my pal Doug wrote about the show (for my fanzine “Room 101″):

Marginal Man show review from Room 101 #8
Click to enlarge

…and hey, check it out. I even bought a shirt:

Jason (in Marginal Man shirt) and his Grandma (not in Marginal Man shirt). July, 1985
Click to enlarge

Marginal Man Live at the Foolkiller in KC, MO 07-03-85
Click to enlarge


Marginal Man: Live At The Foolkiller in KC, MO 07-03-85 (192 kbps)
01 Turn The Tables (3:53)
02 Identity (1:53)
03 Mental Picture (2:03)
04 Tell Me (2:57)
05 I Had a Feeling (5:21)
06 Emotional Scars (1:14)
07 Linger In The Past (3:34)
07 Under a Shadow (2:32)
08 Strange Feeling (2:24)
10 Someone Cares (1:38)
11 Friend (1:40)
12 Marginal Man (2:34)
13 Missing Rungs (2:12)
14 Torn Apart (2:50)
15 Mainstream (5:42)
16 Double Image (4:46)
17 Chocolate Pudding (4:30)
18 Shades of Reason (3:21)
19 Pandora’s Box (2:08)
20 Fallen Pieces (2:48)
21 Black Magic (TSOL) (3:04)

Blind Idiot God: Live At The VFW#18 in KC, MO 10-23-84

January 10th, 2009 5 comments

Gabe Katz (Blind Idiot God): This one’s for all the pussies down in the bar that won’t come up and hear us. (shouting) You know we drove 250 miles to do this!

Unimpressed gentleman in the audience: That ain’t shit.

Recorded the same night as the ill-fated Dr. Know set which I posted earlier, this was the first time I was able to hear Blind Idot God. At the time all I knew about them was that their demo tape had been mentioned in MRR#14/given a “top twenty” listing by Pushead, and that there was some strong local chatter concerning them in KC. Still I guess I had no real idea what to expect.

MRR #14 St. Louis Scene Report
Click to enlarge

MRR #14 Pushead's Top 20
Click to enlarge

People who know what they became 3 or 4 years later and have heard their SST and Zorn related output might be a bit surprised at the more single minded hardcore/metal/punk/noise type blasts that dominate this recording, but if you listen closely to the many “Title Unknown” tracks here you’ll be able to find snippets of riffs and ideas that would later get stitched into much longer pieces. This being 1984 there’s nary a hint of Dub to be found, but the “Avant” underpinnings are still very much in evidence — it’s really too bad their set got cut short. Then again I guess the “pussies down in the bar” (and there were more than a few) probably felt differently about that, eh?

Blind Idiot God Live at the VFW#18 in KC, MO 10-23-84
Click to enlarge


Blind Idiot God: Live At The VFW#18 in KC, MO 10-23-84 (192 kbps)
01 Track 01 – Title Unknown (2:43)
02 Track 02 – Title Unknown (1:16)
03 Track 03 – Title Unknown (2:14)
04 Blasting Off (1:38)
05 Track 05 – Title Unknown (1:19)
06 Track 06 – Title Unknown (3:01)
07 Sawtooth (2:25)
08 Track 08 – Title Unknown (1:29)
09 Shifting Sand (3:49)
10 Track 10 – Title Unknown (2:03)
11 Track 11 – Title Unknown (2:19)
12 Track 12 – Title Unknown (2:51)
13 Easing Back (2:11)
14 Track 14 – Title Unknown (0:24)
15 The Police Are Outside/Club Noise (1:23)

Dr. Know: Live At The VFW#18 in KC, MO 10-23-84

January 10th, 2009 6 comments

Eric Schindling: (stopping the show) I’m sorry, do you wanna be arrested? There are like two cop cars and a paddywagon at the end of the street, they told the owner of the VFW, the manager of the VFW, if it goes on any longer they’re gonna come back to save time ’cause they’re pissed ’cause they were supposed to be, we were supposed to end it about a half hour, forty five minutes ago.

Soundman: (talking through the stage monitors) Tell them to go riot down the street and not here.

Eric Schindling: Fuckin’… you tell… why don’t you vote in November against Reagan and then we might have a little bit left.

Soundman: (shouting) Go riot down the street!

Eric Schindling: Right now all the high school kids are, you know, agreeing with these pigs outside so why don’t you, you know, go register if you’re eighteen, and register to vote…

Kyle Toucher (Dr Know): Outside after the show, there’s gonna be a big riot. Everybody line up, get your bricks and bottles ready… down the street, not here, down the street. After that there’s gonna be a few gang fights and shootings…

Not having come to Punk Rock by way of 80′s Metal (NWOBHM or otherwise), few of the first wave “Crossover” bands actually did that much for me. An exception however, was definitely Dr. Know. They took far more from my precious Black Sabbath than they did from the then-current Metal scene and I loved Kyle Toucher’s voice/guitar solos. Plus, despite their more common lyrical themes of religious damage, nuclear holocaust and insanity, something like “Fist Fuck” was tailor-made to win my 15-year-old brain over.

So since “Plug In Jesus” was getting such heavy rotation in my bedroom, the fact that (as you can see from the transcription above) this show got stopped early was a real drag. Around that time there were fairly perpetual noise complaints and police hassles plaguing the VFW though, and this night also featured a sparse turnout combined with some out-of-place looking frowny musclebound dude stomping around the dancefloor shouting “Just play the music, and don’t quit!” (this prompted a lyric change from Kyle Toucher during “God Bless America” along the order of “Kill that jock if you love God”, informing the guy afterwards that “I just sang a song about you! Impromptu even. Situational.”).

Still the gig got shut down, and Dr. Know were sent packing after only 25 minutes. So while the bad news is that this was a pretty short set, the good news is that eight months later I got to catch and record a way better gig when they were on tour with RKL (and about to release the “Burn” single). Watch for it, smart guy.

Note: I arrived late and missed (the always excellent) Power of the Spoken Word, but I did manage to tape Blind Idiot God‘s set, which you can check out here.

Dr. Know at The VFW#18 in KC, MO 10-23-84
Click to enlarge


Dr. Know: Live At The VFW#18 in KC, MO 10-23-84 (192 kbps)
01 SATC (Agression) (2:27)
02 Mr Freeze (3:20)
03 What To Do (1:42)
04 God Bless America (2:35)
05 Life Returns (4:01)
06 In That House (4:44)
07 Crucified (2:34)
08 Circle Of Fear (3:56)
09 Two Cop Cars And A Paddywagon (1:21)

D.R.I.: Live At The O.D. Ranch in KC, MO 06-24-84

December 22nd, 2008 2 comments

You know, I still fucking love early D.R.I. Admittedly they kinda lost me after “Dealing With It”, but there are still plenty of days when I’m in the mood for those first two 7″s (or the first 12″ & the “Violent Pacification” single, or the first CD, or however you wanna look at it). I don’t know if it’s the era, the songs, the crude recording quality, the pre-Metal writing structure, the youthful energy or just the freshness of my own personal exposure to hyper fast noisy Hardcore (maybe only the earliest Gang Green cuts came close), but its hard to top those first few years of total AUGHHHHHHHHH!

This show was held at the “O.D. Ranch” (the Orange Doe-Nuts’ upstairs loft and namesake of their LP “Back at the Ranch” — I seem to recall that they were later evicted after being charged with “partying during office hours” when Tales of Terror played), and for a house party the sound was really pretty good. D.R.I.’s show was right in the middle of a near-solid week of KC gigs (Sluglords: 6/22/84, The Freeze: 6/23/84, Nick Cave: 6/25/84, JFA: 6/26/84, The Faction: 6/29/84), but even in the midst of my live music sensory overload they managed to make a strong impression. The O.D. Ranch certainly was a cool space and this gig was SweatyHotPacked with plenty of energy and some exuberant (but contained) slamming that looked like a tiny ball of elbows if viewed from a vantage. In listening back I can still ID half of the people who joined in on the mic, and right after the band was done I dashed up to snag one of those giant ceiling-to-floor butcher paper setlists, the spoils of this act triumphantly hanging upon my bedroom wall for months. Considering all of the tiny stuff I’ve held on to over time I have no idea how I eventually managed to lose track of something that huge, but I did. Ah well, at least the recording remains.

D.R.I. J Card
Click to enlarge


D.R.I.: Live At The O.D. Ranch in KC, MO 06-24-84 (192 kbps)
01 I Don’t Need Society (1:19)
02 Reaganomics (0:34)
03 Commuter Man (0:51)
04 Plastique (0:18)
05 Why? (0:31)
06 Balance Of Terror (0:36)
07 My Fate To Hate (0:22)
08 Who Am I? (0:31)
09 Money Stinks (0:41)
10 Human Waste (0:20)
11 Yes Ma’am (1:34)
12 Denis’ Problems (0:44)
13 Closet Punk (1:07)
14 How To Act (1:00)
15 Taxes Back (0:48)
16 Equal People (0:42)
17 On My Way Home (1:01)
18 The Beginning Of The End (0:50)
19 Bail Out (1:45)
20 Snap (1:06)
21 The Explorer (1:31)
22 Slit My Wrists (0:21)
23 Busted Again (1:28)
24 Stupid Stupid War (0:50)
25 Counter Attack (0:18)
26 I’d Rather Be Sleeping (1:39)
27 Running Around (0:52)
28 Couch Slouch (1:25)
29 To Open Closed Doors (1:05)
30 God Is Broke (1:00)
31 Soup Kitchen (1:58)
32 Sad To Be (1:53)
33 War Crimes (1:28)
34 Busted (0:41)
35 Draft Me (0:23)
36 First Round Draft Choice (0:32)
37 Capitalist Suck (0:30)
38 Madman (0:43)
39 Misery Loves Company (0:36)
40 No Sense (1:27)
41 Blockhead (3:19)
42 Karma (3:13)
43 No People (2:46)
44 Violent Pacification (Incomplete) (0:51)

Iron Cross: Live At The VFW#18 in KC, MO 08-11-84

December 21st, 2008 No comments

Jason: What were your thoughts of the Kansas City crowd?

Sab: I had a good time, apart from the two people. But there are always at least two in every crowd.

Andre: Could you explain what they were doing?

Sab: Oh, they were just Sieg-Heiling that’s all, and I don’t have any time for that so I told them off.

Jason: What did you say?

Sab: I said that if they were beaten up by three people in the N.F. (National Front) when they were sixteen, they wouldn’t be doing that.

My exposure to Iron Cross before this night was limited to their tracks on the Flex Your Head comp and a crappy tape recording of the Skinhead Glory single. Thanks to the source quality I’d scarcely spun the tape, but the Flex Your Head tracks really stood out to me due to that killer guitar tone & the overall comparative tempo restraint. Still, aside from reading an interview with Sab in Maximum RocknRoll #11, I barely knew a damn thing about the band and had little clue about the (by then 3 years old) various controversies surrounding them. My ignorance aside, even from this 38 minute set I could see the divisive impact they had on punks of the day; for example at the KC show their cover of Skrewdriver‘s 1977 tune “I Don’t Like You” was met with Sieg-Heiling, and throughout this recording you can hear people mockingly shout stuff like “More Heavy Metal!”, “Slow down!”, “It’s too fast!” and “You’re too wild!”. 1984 Hardcore in a snapshot, I suppose.

I was outside interviewing Naked Raygun (their set from this night has been posted as well, grab it here) when Iron Cross began to play, so while “I Don’t Love You Anymore” starts a bit abruptly, this is pretty much the full show. Interestingly, along with some otherwise unreleased covers by the likes of Led Zeppelin and the Rolling Stones (“We Love You”!), there are a handful of songs here that either never officially came out or are tunes I simply don’t know. To wit, “House of Pain”, whatever Track 07 is really called (which starts with Sab shouting “Whatcha gonna BEEE when you grow up?” & seems to have a chorus of “What is right for you?”), and the “New One” (announced with a preface of “I don’t even know the words yet and we’ll probably fuck it up but you won’t notice the difference”). In taking to Sab after the show (more on that in a second) he mentions their plans to go home and record a full album, so I can only assume these were slated to appear there. If you’re out there Sab I’d love to get the story, there are some cool songs here that (if dead) probably deserve a resurrection.

Also bundled in with the show is a PDF of an interview with Sab that I ran in issue #5 of my ‘zine Room 101. I can’t say that it’s my finest hour as I’m either clueless or silent through most of it, but my friend Andre saved the day by having a couple of actual questions to ask. Despite the ramshackle quality Sab was gracious as could be throughout, so (against all odds) you might actually be somewhat entertained. Topics touched upon include “Straight Edge” (you know, of course), SOA, Naked Raygun & “how Sab got into Punk”. Somehow I managed to avoid asking him what his favorite pizza topping was.

Flyer
Click to enlarge


Iron Cross: Live At The VFW#18 in KC, MO 08-11-84 (192 kbps)
01 I Don’t Love You Anymore (2:17)
02 House Of Pain (3:28)
03 Shadows In The Night (3:20)
04 I Don’t Like You (Skrewdriver) (2:26)
05 Wolfpack (3:02)
06 Communication Breakdown (Led Zeppelin) (2:52)
07 Track 07 (What Is Right For You) (2:35)
08 You’re A Rebel (4:41)
09 Crucified (3:51)
10 New One (4:45)
11 We Love You (Rolling Stones) [False Start] (0:35)
12 We Love You (Rolling Stones) (3:15)
13 Keith Patterson Announces Upcoming Shows (1:01)


• Here’s the interview in PDF form all by itself.

Micronotz: Live At The Foolkiller in KC, MO 08-26-85

December 19th, 2008 2 comments

Having barely missed the true heyday of the Embarrassment (the only other real contenders), I can easily say that The Micronotz were by far my favorite local band growing up. At the age of 14 I already knew I was damn lucky to have them around, and listening back on their albums today it’s even more apparent to me. Throughout their relatively short career (5 and a half years) they always delivered a solid and unique garage/Detroit-influenced form of American proto (and post) punk, with increasingly crafty pop-styled song structures showing up a bit more towards the end (translation: reviewers started mentioning Hüsker Dü more and Iggy Pop less). As most people familiar with the Micronotz know, there were two versions of the band; the short breakdown is that after original singer Dean Lubensky left Lawrence in 1984, “Crazy Legs” Jay Hauptli stepped in on vocals / second guitar to complete the new lineup. I’ve always thought that both formations were completely excellent in different ways and I’m sitting on around seven or so recordings from the “Jay Years” that I’ll be happy to share here.

Chronologically this show is actually the last of theirs that I recorded, but I’m starting off with it both because it was a great gig (in multiple respects as they were opening up for the recently reformed Descendents), and because of a conversation I found on the tape when I got home. Turns out that right after the Micronotz finished up their song “40 Fingers”, some fellow from the crowd picked up the recorder I’d left sitting on the mixing board. Assuming that it belonged to the band (and as a side note, old vocalist Dean was actually in attendance here in the crowd), this gentleman helpfully proceeded to solicit reactions about the show from his female companions:

Larry: So what did you think of tonight’s performance, Blair?

Blair: What?

Larry: What did you think of tonight?

Blair: Oh, wonderful! Musically tight. You know, with Dean they had a better show, but now with Jay they’ve got a better, better sound.

Larry: Now that’s Dean, Dean “The Machine”, is that who you’re talking about?

Blair: Right, right, right, right. He had the bod that attracted the girls, but these guys, they’ve got the music ability.

Larry: Thank you. Thank you for your comments.

Blair: You’re welcome Larry.

So there you have it; both a succinct breakdown of the different eras of the band and the final word on the subject. The arguing ends now.

Micronotz live at the Foolkiller, 1985 (Photo by Phillip Heying)
Click to enlarge
Micronotz live at the Foolkiller, 1985 (Photo by Phillip Heying)


Micronotz: Live At The Foolkiller in KC, MO 08-26-85 (192 kbps)
01 Stray Cat Blues (Rolling Stones) (1:40)
02 Born To Kick Ass (1:03)
03 Whatcha Trying To Do (2:24)
04 Proud To Be A Farmer (2:42)
05 Psychodeli (2:18)
06 Black And White (2:04)
07 Your Mind Is Empty (2:24)
08 Exit 301 (3:09)
09 Push It Out (2:12)
10 40 Fingers (1:51)
11 Audience Reactions (1:41)


And to round things out, here’s an interview with the guys on tour in early ’85, uploaded to YouTube by SuperFan Mike Blur: