Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Spits Spits Spits!

I used to say Seattle punk band The Spits never can surprise me because I expect the unexpected with them. Crazy costumes and crazy live shows are the norm. But this month look what they've done, The Spits have totally surprised me! First, Fat Wreck Chords announced they would be releasing a split single with The Spits and NOFX on November 23rd. A split with NOFX, really? And then this bizarre comic book story called "Haunted Fang Castle" and accompanying soundtrack, which was released by Scion featuring The Spits. It sounds like the synthesized voices of the Wood brothers telling the tale of a band of misfits on an adventure to save a princess, with interludes of weird psychedelic music and songs. It almost reminds me of that scene in "Dogs in Space" where Michael Hutchinson shoots heroin with his girlfriend and he tells her the story of the dragon that gets a stomach ache every time he eats people. The music isn't what you would expect from The Spits and the art is funny. The unicorn is a donkey with a horn, the wizard looks like Santa Claus with glasses, the robot is really an '80s arcade game, and most of the characters are wearing jeans vests. Check it out!

Monday, July 26, 2010

MC5 Mondays!

I love this video of the MC5 from 1970 doing "American Ruse". It's political, jammin' proto punk and they're rockin' the 'fro:

They told you in school about freedom
But when you try to be free they never let ya
They said "it's easy , nothing to it"
And now the army's out to get ya
Sixty nine America in terminal stasis
The air's so thick it's like drowning in molasses
I'm sick and tired of paying these dues
And i'm finally getting hip to the American ruse

I learned to say the pledge of allegiance
Before they beat me bloody down at the station
They haven't got a word out of me since
I got a billion years probation

Sixty nine America in terminal stasis
The air's so thick it's like drowning in molasses
I'm sick and tired of paying these dues
And i'm sick to my guts of the American ruse
Find More lyrics at
Phony stars, oh no! crummy cars, oh no!
Cheap guitars, oh no! Joe's primitive bar... nah!

Rock'em back, Sonic !
The way they pull you over it's suspicious
Yeah, for something that just ain't your fault
If you complain they're gonna get vicious
Kick in the teeth and charge you with assault
Yeah, but i can see the chickens coming home to roost
Young people everywhere are gonna cook their goose
Lots of kids are working to get rid of these blues
cause everybody's sick of the American ruse

Well well well , take a look around !
Well well well , take a look around !
Well well well , take a look around !
Well well well , take a look around !
Well well well , take a look around !

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Athiarchist crashing Mayhem Fest!

Athiarchist is a two-piece hardcore thrash metal band from Eugene, Oregon. The band had a brilliant idea to build a mobile stage and sound set up in a truck and tour the country playing impromptu, free, and mobile shows. Brilliant! This video is of them crashing the Mayhem Festival down in Auburn (Washington) a few weeks ago:

Follow the band's adventures via their blog and videos as the take the DIY route crashing the Mayhem Fest tour across America:

Thursday, July 15, 2010

The Final Days of the Lusty Lady

Seattle's legendary strip/peak-a-boo booth club the Lusty Lady recently closed it's doors. I know quite a few people that have worked there over the years and quite a few more that patronized it... and all of Seattle laughed at their funny sign captions. The Swedish Legal System fantastically filmed a cover of Carly Simon's "You're So Vain" inside the Lusty Lady during its final week, featuring some of the Lusty's dancers. Awesome and totally goofy!

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Eric Davidson and his Garage Punk Book

I was a total New Bomb Turks fan back in the day. When "Destroy Oh-Boy!" came out I fucking LOVED that album. I played it probably every day for two years. So much energy, so much fun. You know how certain bands just do it for you? They hit on all levels? That was, and still is, the New Bomb Turks for me. The perfect mix of punk rock energy, garage rock rawness, speed, and catchy songwriting.

When NBT came to Seattle on their first tour to support "Destroy Oh-Boy!" they played the Off Ramp. I lined up an interview with the band through their booking agent (or maybe even by writing the band directly) and we did a fun hour long interview in a van outside the club that belonged to that dude Reverend Rot'n'Hell that used to do Gee-Zus zine in Vancouver BC (who seems to have dropped off the face of the punk rock earth!). I saw the band a number of times live, including an awesome show in Vegas at the Las Vegas Shakedown. To cap off a wonderful Vegas Shakedown weekend, when Amy and I went to catch a cab to the airport, both hungover and thrilled after an awesome Vegas weekend, the line was totally huge. Crap, would we even make our plane?

Eric, lead singer of the New Bomb Turks, was just getting in a cab and waived us over to ride with him to the airport. Super nice guy! He supported my old punk rock fanzine 10 Things from the get go, he sent me letters of support and I always sent him copies and reviewed everything his band put out. It's those connections in the DIY underground punk scene that can make or break a band, but I always had the feeling Eric didn't give a shit about networking and all that stuff, he was just a cool cat that supported what he liked. And for that, I and a lot of other zinesters always supported the band. It was a great era when zines were at their peak, there was a strong punk rock scene, and bands could almost make a living on big indie labels if they toured a lot and put out new records fairly often.

When I heard Eric was writing a book on garage punk, I really should have gotten my shit together and sent in photos and info on Seattle bands. After all, I've got literally a couple totes filled with photos and have dedicated years of my life to writing about and documenting this stuff. But I had so much going on in the past year I just never did. Luckily Tim Hayes, ex-owner of Fallout Records, gave him a bunch of stories and info on Seattle. And Tim Hayes is the motherfucking man, he has excellent stories!

Last week Eric came to town to do a book reading and sell signed copies of "We Never Learn: The Gunk Punk Undergut, 1988-2001." Apparently he did a record store gig earlier in the day at Easy Street. At night it was pizza/drink joint Snoose Junction 2 up off of Greenwood Ave at Holman. It's a weird location, but a cool place, I've gone for drinks there a few times and seen Tom Price's Desert Road Classic or whatever they are called band there before. Alot of the usual suspects were there from the garage punk scene, but surprisingly not a huge turn out, maybe 30 people. Eric was very cool. Somehow with all the people he's met over the years he either faked it really well or totally remembered me. Actually, when I introduced myself he immediately said he name checked 10 Things in the book as one of the regional zines covering garage punk during that time, which was awesome. Later we rapped about the first interview I did with the band in the van outside the OffRamp... so long ago at the beginning of his band's career, long before getting signed to Epitaph and headlining big tours. Very cool and fun reading, he's still a stand up guy.

I've just cracked open the book, I'll give a review in a few weeks when I've had a chance to read and digest it all.

Cathy (ex-Fizz zine), Jenny Hayes, and Meghan (ex-Empty Records) and I debated whether this cover photo was actually taken in the time frame of the book, it seems likely it was after 2001. Still a killer shot of The Spits though:

Half the time Eric told side stories and tidbits of info that wasn't in the book instead of actually reading from it, which made going totally worth it:

My signed copy of the book:

He also read some stories that didn't make it in the book, apparently the publisher made him cut the content in half. He read them off printouts... possibly a part two at some point?:

The Librarian

Recently I entered the world of Extreme Pencil Fighting after winning as an audience member at their show at the Rendezvous. My character, The Librarian, came together pretty well for the first Extreme Pencil Fighting show at The Funhouse (although the mini pencils started falling off my pencil bullet belt).

I even got an awesome naughty librarian posse to back me up!

The announcers, comedian Owen Straw and Rat City Rollergirls/Bloodhag singer Jake Stratton:

Bill from Bat Country vs. the Ultimate Warrior

Friday, July 2, 2010

Cover night at the GRN STRP house!

The GRN STRP House has hosted some great shows in Seattle and it sounds like soon will be coming to an end. This weekend will be a doozy of show with a bunch of bands playing as cover bands: