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New Blood! CONMAN, MILD SHAG, and EX-DEBS

“New Blood” is our weekly feature spotlighting new bands from around the world! See below for info ...

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Maximum Rocknroll #394 • Mar 2016

Here comes Maximum Rocknroll #394, the March 2016 issue! This issue features a massive bilingual ...

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Tigress

MRR Radio #1490 • 1/31/15

The Slumber Party with Rory & Shabana! Intro song: DREAM RITUAL - Green World Harsh Realm SUPER UNISON - ...

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New Blood! CHLOROFORM, ROBBERY, and SHOJO WINTER

“New Blood” is our weekly feature spotlighting new bands from around the world! See below for info ...

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Filip Fuchs (RIP)

MRR Radio #1489 • 1/24/16

This week, coincidentally on his birthday, Matt handles the international jams and pays tribute to ...

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Create to Destroy! Stuart Schrader


September 23rd, 2015 by

You may have heard the name Stuart Schrader before, as he did Game of the Arseholes zine. This was a highly respected zine in the “rawer” punk scene which you may have inferred from the title which references ANTI-CIMEX. He has done countless interviews, some of which have appeared in MRR such as MISSBRUKARNA and MELLAKKA. Oh, and don’t forget the ANTI-CIMEX archive! I am hoping for a re-issue of his zine, but for now here is an interview (by Amelia Eakins):
How’d you discover punk?
First, thanks for the interview. I appreciate the Create to Destroy! feature because I think it is really important to recognize the blood, sweat, tears, and labor put into the punk scene that goes beyond just playing in bands. It would be incredible if we rewrote punk history not from the perspective of bands only but from a more holistic perspective of everyone who contributes, including those whose idea of “do it yourself” is to do nothing but just be a punk!

Anyway, I came to punk in a way that is almost unimaginable today: with great difficulty. I knew about punk years before I had ever heard it. I learned of the band names MINOR THREAT, BLACK FLAG, and DEAD KENNEDYS through mentions of them by guy named Glen Plake, who was an extreme skier with a giant mohawk who was semi-famous in the early 1990s. But it was before the internet and because I didn’t know any punks, I didn’t really know how to find the music. I discovered a DEAD KENNEDYS badge in a suburban CD shop, but they didn’t, as far as I could tell, have any of their CDs or cassettes. I was a pretty disaffected, angry, and lonely kid, and I was listening to mainstream metal and grunge at the time. Eventually, I met some punks, including one with whom I’m still friends: Nick Turner, who played guitar in COLD SWEAT and WALLS. He made some mixtapes for me, and it all began. Nowadays, one can use a search engine to discover so much, but it’s hard to imagine YouTube or downloaded mp3s being as precious to anyone today as those first mixtapes made by Nick and other friends were to me.

Yeah it used to be difficult to get into punk, I miss the hunt. Do you like ANTI-CIMEX?
I would say that I am obsessed with about three years of ANTI-CIMEX’s history. On most days, I think their second 7” is the finest hardcore record ever produced: just uncontrolled, sheer rage. I am also quite fond of their third 7”, as well as compilation and other tracks recorded circa 1983 and sung in Swedish. I do like their later output, but my life would not be diminished if I never heard it again. The 1983–1984 stuff, though, is essential.

On the Anti-Cimex Archive, I have collected a lot of information and ephemera about ANTI-CIMEX and SKITSLICKERS. I have tried to make the postings interesting and compendious, but it is difficult to be totally accurate, especially because there are lots of competing stories to be found and because I don’t speak Swedish. There is another cool blog in a similar spirit by a Swedish dude that fans should check called Victims of a Bombraid. Members of ANTI-CIMEX are on Facebook, and more ephemera is appearing online. Still, I am proud that I have put a lot of unique material online for free and easy access, stuff that is nearly impossible to find elsewhere. My favorite posts are one with complete info on the eight SKITSLICKERS sleeve variations and one on a few pre-CIMEX bands. I do have a lot more material that I would like to put online someday. It’s a slow process.

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Create to Destroy! Loud Punk


August 26th, 2015 by

I met Chris when I was with Perdition on a small Montreal/Albany tour in 2010.  I think that’s when I met Chris?  Anyway, he’s always been a go-to person in Albany and I wanted to find out more about his label and his recent Noise Annoys record store turned web shop.  Here is Chris from Loud Punk Records and Noise Annoys:

Are you from Albany?
Yes I’ve spent almost my entire life bouncing around the Albany area minus a small stint in Boston during 2000.

punk

What was the height of the scene there?
It really depends on how you look at. The late 90s was a really great time to grow up around here in the aspect of the punk scene.  It was a really crazy and exciting place during those days. All corners of the scene were really thriving, with shows all the time and a lot less internal divisions and inner scene politics. At the same time it was also a pretty intense and dangerous scene too. You typically couldn’t go to a show without at least a handful of brawls breaking out.But it too really depended on what shows you went to. It taught me a lot of life lessons at a young age, good and bad. The 2005/2006 years were also a really key time locally. The first part of the 2000’s were kind of bleak around here then. There was a resurgence, all of us that had been around for a bit weren’t kids anymore and started filling the shoes of guys like Nate from DEVOID OF FAITH/Gloom Records and others who were the real backbone of what went on around here but were not as active as they once were.  There was also a whole new wave of kids that started coming to shows. We had some amazing venues, great bands not only in the local scene but coming through town at the time. It made for a very fun and exciting environment.

What’s it like now?
Albany’s scene comes in waves, though things will be great for a few years, but quiet for a few. Currently it’s a little quiet but your hard pressed to find a scene not in a major city that isn’t in the same position that we are. While some come and go, the core group of dedicated folks around here are still doing what they know and love. Things can only get better and I have no doubt they will.

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Blast From the Past: Xcentric Noise


August 4th, 2015 by

this ran originally in MRR #339

by Andy “Shesk” Thompson

I’m listening to the Beating the Meat LP from 1984 to get me self in the mood, but it really pisses me off every time I hear it… It was a great compilation, a culmination of the stuff I’d done to date, all the excitement of receiving the tapes, the tape-to-tape duplicating, the stupid sound effects, the letters, the DIY!! When I went into a studio with the quarter-inch tape to put it together (Angel Studios near Hull, with Steve Larkman the engineer — I’m sure he thought I was nuts), I paid about £240. I designed the cover and wanted to do the usual inner sleeve — since packaging was always well important and far more interesting and exciting than a two-track single in a plain sleeve — but I had no money and accepted an offer to release it…and was ripped off, struggled to get any copies, the cover was just turned orange and had no inner sleeve, it never looked or felt right — and yet sounded amazing! There was no communication and it took ages for me to get back my costs for the studio, which only happened because I knew the guy at the distributor Jungle Records and he felt guilty, ’cos he knew I was on a loser. I managed to get a few copies off him, too, but not many. I dunno how many were actually made or sold.

And for the record, I made nothing from Beating the Meat and was forever pissed off that all those years had been hijacked!! Just one of my many regrets, but at least it got the bands heard again around the world! Please have it for free (download via mediafire.com) ’cos I’m not re-releasing it, not that I ever got the master tape back anyhow. I’ll be happy you just at least hear all the bands on it, ’cos that’s all Xcentric Noise was about — trying to pass on some of the excitement I was feeling, spreading this amazing music with message and passion and screaming anger and everyone doing it yerself! It was just so energising….

DISCOVERING PUNK

shesk_oldI first got into punk about May ’77, the moment I first heard it. I was only fourteen years old, previously had liked T. Rex and Sparks and some Bowie. I remember going into school the day after seeing a newspaper with the Sex Pistols in it, and talking music with my mate Mu. He said, “You’d love punk — listen to John Peel.” Bang, it was instant — a real slap in the face. My tranny radio and the pillow were my friends for a few years after that, and definitely the best part of the day! I guess maybe I’d finally found somewhere I felt I could belong, somewhere outside the norm.

I grew up in Little Weighton, England — a village with no streetlights, pretty cut off from the world. I guess I didn’t fit in with the norm, a kinda loner but with friends, the weird one, and the only one really into punk down our way. But ’cos I played football pretty good, I didn’t get fucked around, just the piss-takes like normal. They never got punk rock! I just ended up doing stuff all the time in me room while always liking and supporting the underdog (Hull City / Norman Wisdom [RIP] / Newport County); I was anti-injustice, anti-apartheid and anti-poverty, and I hated pop music, disco and shit soft rock crap.

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Maximum Rocknroll #388 • Sept 2015

mrr_388_cvr

MRR #388, the September Issue, features interviews with New Orleans mold breaking freak-punks MYSTIC INANE, vitriolic Texas snot-punk cult VIDEO, and Memphis’s Goner “groove masters” EX-CULT. We’ve also got conversations with PURE DISGUST (at the forefront of the NWODCHC), Terry Hammer (Toxic Reasons’ manager and a first wave San Francisco punker), Canada’s HIRED GOONS (oi! oi!) and Greece’s GUTTER. Plus, an in-depth tour diary from PERMANENT RUIN‘s recent European run and a back-n-forth with 1859 Records. Plus all the reviews and columns that you love!

Buy MRR Back Issues

Download this issue of MRR for only $2.99!!
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Blast From the Past: Really Red Part Two! U-Ron Speaks


July 23rd, 2015 by

This originally ran in MRR #326/July ’10, which you can grab here

Deep South Punk Legends from Ozone City:

U-Ron from Really Red!

By David Ensminger

 

While flying home from Portland last weekend, where I lectured about the need for a greater understanding of Mexican-American gravesite traditions (no, they are not landscapes of trinkets, they are spiritual culturescapes), I flipped through a mid-1990s MRR that included multiple angry letters to the editor about Mykel Board, the magazine’s perennial “straw dog.” Today, I read angry letters denouncing my March interview with John Paul of Really Red, which I prefaced by explaining that punk was a wide umbrella genre with an inclusive community. If we denounce him with a purge befitting Stalin, then we should throw out our records by the Dickies, Dag Nasty, Bad Brains, and the list goes on. I support the editors. In today’s saturated media environment, easily entrenched political slogans and platitudes on CNN and punk blogs act as substitutes for authentic discussion and discourse. The real danger is smug self-satisfaction.

When they offered to re-print my 2005 interview with U-Ron, I approached him about openly releasing his email to me, too, in which he explains his reaction to the article, (the email can be found in the letters section of this issue). I do not seek to fissure the band’s relationship with each other. I seek to explore the multiple perspectives (even multiple truths) that occur throughout the history of most punk bands. As a reader of MRR since the winter of 1984, I feel more dedicated than ever to its efforts because it is willing to engage, not pretend, and to incite, not recite. Flex your head.

 

 wrex

 

MRR: From Lightnin’ Hopkins to Roy Head to Townes Van Zandt to Steve Earle to ZZ Top (OK, Dallas should get some credit, too…), and even Kenny Rogers, Houston has been the home to a myriad of artists. When you started listening to music in Houston, were you at all aware of the city’s rich musical history? What was local music like when you were growing up? For instance, Steve Earle sings of Telephone Road and the gritty honky tonks…

First off, it is very flattering to be asked to do this interview 25 years after the release of Really Red’s first LP. It’s even odder that Empty Records wanted to re-release it 25 years after the fact. I’m pretty stunned. Really Red never thought that we would be remembered three years after we broke up. All that said, I have no idea who in the hell would want to read this, but at the risk of being totally boring I’ll try and give you the best answers I can. I have to point out that this will be my perspective and recollections. In no way should any of this be taken as reflecting the opinions of Bob, John Paul, or Kelly, the other three former members of Really Red. They might remember things in a whole other way. Maybe no one will care about or remember these people and places, but they were all involved in Houston’s formative punk scene in one way or another, and they do deserve to be mentioned. This is about a scene that is long gone, but it took a lot of brave and unique people to make it happen. They deserve credit. I appreciate the chance to give it to them and to tell our story.

When I moved from Canada to Houston in the 9th grade, I knew very little at the time about any Texas music. By time I was in the 10th grade, I started going to see live music. One of the greatest bands that I ever saw was The 13th Floor Elevators. They were amazing. A bunch of working class acid heads from East Texas who shirked any trappings of being wannabe rock stars. They were drenched with acid mystique, and when they weren’t too high to play, they were like a damn hurricane. They were playing their own brand of psychedelic punk. They were one of the greatest and strangest bands that I’ve ever seen. I still love them and still listen to their recordings.

I met Kelly Younger around that time. We formed a band with Andy Feehan, and some other guys, called The Lords. We played these community center teen dances. The Lords, only played covers. Hit singles and the like. At least we did album cuts of the Velvet Underground, Rolling Stones, Animals, Yardbirds and Love. We thought we were pretty radical because we refused to wear uniforms, and most other groups did. Most bands only played known radio hits and we played album tracks. You have to remember this was before FM radio started playing album cuts. With few exceptions, radio only would play the selected single. There were other interesting bands doing some originals, but not too many at that time. Everything was so restricted and stifled. I remember at one gig some older asshole stepped up and sucker punched Andy because he had yelled, “Fuck it!” in frustration about something. It was ridiculous.

Later, Andy Feehan and I started hanging out in the psychedelic clubs. You could go there underage because they were not serving alcohol, just lots of weed being smoked. We saw the 13th Floor Elevators playing at 2 and 3 AM. We saw bands like Bubble Puppy, the immensely underrated Children from San Antonio, The Chessmen of Dallas (the Vaughan brothers), and we got to see Sam “Lightnin” Hopkins a bunch of times. It was an excellent introduction to live noncommercial music.

The Lords broke up before I finally got kicked out of high school for “subversive political activity” and I left my parents’ home. My “subversive political activity,” by the way, was nothing more than being very vocally against the damn Vietnam War. I was on a Houston Independent School district blacklist. They were out to get kids like me, and they finally did. It happened to a lot of kids. High school was an Orwellian nightmare. It was really an eye opener. Once you see the lies exposed, it is impossible for anyone to stuff the genie back in the bottle. After high school I moved into a big house with Kelly and a crew of crazies, and it was a time of lots of live music, experimenting with acid, weed, and beer, nothing too different from the rest of the world. Kelly and I met up with John Paul around this time.

After a few years of working shit jobs and staying stoned Kelly, John Paul, and I ended up living in a series of old houses in the Montrose district. Kelly got hit by a car, and as a result of the insurance settlement he bought these huge Orange amps and some guitars and stuff, and we used to get fucked up and try and make original music. We sucked, but we had a lot of fun. We would go out to the Attics Dam area and pick shopping bags full of Texas psychedelic mushrooms. It was wild. You would wait until after a good rain and go out to the cow pastures there and pick all you wanted. People would have these mushroom parties. Crazy crazy times.

By this time the psych clubs were long gone and the local live music scene began to really suck. There were touring bands all of the time, but the local rock and roll music scene had dried up due to lack of club and radio support. Everyone who was on tour came through Houston in those days. I mean it. But a lot of the Houston clubs had a preference for cover bands only if you were local. It was fucked up. Austin had the Cosmic Cowboy thing and Houston had cover bands, kicker bars and pre-disco DJ clubs. It was a bleak time for local rock music.

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