Friday, November 25, 2005

This Year's Selection for Hardcore's All-Time Turkey: Bad Brains "Rise" LP

In terms of entries, this has been the best contest yet. A lot of you wrote in with your nominations, and many interesting and compelling arguments were made. Thank you so much to everyone who took such an enthusiastic interest in the contest this time around.

Without a doubt, the self-titled Warzone LP and Token Entry's Weight of the World LP drew the most attention, but many of the arguments made weren't compelling enough for me to stick either of those birds on the table this year. Since I plan on making this contest an annual tradition here at BBHC, there's always next year to make your case.

The winner of the first annual "Hardcore's All-Time Turkey" goes to Bas Lochorn, who did an excellent job of carving up the Bad Brains "Rise" LP. Congrats Bas!

First off, when choosing a a record from a band that should be listed as the biggest atrocity of the hardcore scene, it better be a band that mattered. You could take Intensity, with their songs about bald eagles and screaming words like "Yummie" like a New Kid On The Block with an erection, but them writing a bad 7" like that had zero to no effect on the hardcore scene whatsoever. So who cares, right?

Secondly, from a band's point of view, it almost has to be a later era record, where the band totally destroyed a solid reputation and a legacy of music. If a band only released one record, and it sucks the life out of the room when spinning it, than the band never even deserved any credit anyway. But if you take Warzone, who released a lot of good releases ("Lower East Side Crew", "Don't Forget The Struggle..", "Open Your Eyes") and then proceeded to mix Van Halen with Tone Loc on their "S/T" album, they, and no one else, foiled, soiled and destroyed their own reputation. The Warzone after that album could never manage to become again the Warzone from before. Even recording their most famous 7" again was a big miss.

Thirdly, it should be possible to take a record from a hardcore band, that no longer can be considered "hardcore". If they wrote bad hardcore, that's one thing, but straying from the path of "Loud, fast rules" and then making a crap record, should doom their reputation for eternity.

So here's my pick for "Hardcore Music's All Time Turkey"

Bad Brains - "Rise" (Sony Music)

Let's face it, any record of the Bad Brains without the rock solid foundation of Hr, Dr. Know, Darryl and Earl is a disgrace. These four people have created hardcore from scratch, and in no way can they be replaced with "hired guns" (pun definitley intended!). First off, changing a frontman is a bit harder to do than, let's say, a drummer. Sure, each member provides their own style to the band, but a voice is recognizable, and in the Bad Brains' case provides them with a face of their own. No singer can swoon, croon, scream, whine, growl, howl and rip it like HR. After him, there is no one else... "Joseph Israel" tried and failed, for the simple fact that he is not HR. Who can really blame the guy, right?

Having Mackie of Cro-Mags fame on drums gives them still a little more "hardcore" cred, but like said before, you can't change this four-piece that started it all. Without them there is no Bad Brains. Plain and simple.

The music is a story in itself. It's just plain bad. And having the name Bad Brains attached brings along high expectations. And these were not met in a long way. In my humble opinion they were already losing "the Midas touch" when recording "Quickness". It was the first time it became clear that the were running out of ideas. If a band should "quit while you're ahead", the Bad Brains should have stopped after "Quickness". As read in an interview: "Where do you go after 50 songs? What could the next 50 bring differently?" And I guess it was true. "Rise" surely didn't come close in proving otherwise.

Maybe it isn't even JUST "Rise". The 95' Maverick Records disaster "God Of Love" is the same way all over again. And this time, losing their name and their spirit to go on. Soul Brains? Give me a break...

Fact of the matter is, "Rise" set in an era of one of the biggest, best and most innovative bands of the hardcore scene EVER, to turn into a joke. With a reputation that can never be mended again. All that is left, when admiring the Bad Brains, is a horrid sense of nostalgia... And nostalgia is the death for any good band. "Remember when the Bad Brains we're great?

Bas Lochorn

Tuesday, November 22, 2005

From the Fort Worth Star Telegram

The old switcheroo: Guys wearing girl pants? Yep, you read it right.

Whatever Staff Writer

Editor’s note: We asked readers to guess which models were boys and which were girls in a photo display that accompanied this story on Page 10E of Tuesday’s Star-Telegram. Here are the answers: From left to right, it’s girl-boy-girl-boy-girl.

Teen fashion is a weird, fast-changing world, and the newest twist is a gender-bender. Take a stroll through the mall or stop by the local teen hangout and you will not be able to miss it: Boys are wearing girls' jeans. They're wearing them every day, everywhere, and for every reason. And for today's teens, this is all perfectly normal.

Guys have begun to shop in the juniors department for jeans, buying the tightest pants they can find. John Weimer, who works at Pacific Sunwear, said guys shop there all the time now for girl pants. "It shouldn't be normal," he said, commenting humorously that this trend goes against all moral values and traditions.

Trey Lyon, a junior at Boswell High School, wears girl jeans almost every day. So do quite a few of his friends. He explains it with what I've found is the most common reason for the phenomenon: He says he wears girl pants "because they are comfortable and they fit my style."

Not all guys are into the girl pants trend. This particular style is almost always related to the guy's music preference, as are most styles nowadays. These girl-pants guys typically refer to themselves as "hardcore" music fans (not to be confused with "emo" listeners, of course). Hardcore music can be described as "punk with a message," combining stop-and-go rhythms with harsh vocals. They and many others who enjoy this musical version of self-expression let their individuality show by dressing in this formerly unheard-of way.

One female salesclerk at American Eagle said that she can always tell when a guy comes in to get girl jeans. "They just kind of look around . . . so I tell them what styles they will like best, and when they try them on they like them."

"Guys almost always come in with other guys," Weimer said. "They are very secretive about it, too," as if they don't want anyone to know what they are about to buy.

Though some guys in girl pants have girlfriends, they usually don't share jeans. "We wear the same size, but we have never shared pants," Trey said of his girlfriend.

Popular stores for guys looking for girls' jeans are American Eagle, Hot Topic and PacSun. And, guys, take it from a girl: Target and Hollister are also good places to find girl pants. Just don't be scared to ask for help!


I wonder if they wear panties, too? -- Ronny

Monday, November 21, 2005

Thanksgiving Contest

There are thousands and thousands of different hardcore records out there. Maybe even a million, who knows. There are a quite a few classics that distinguish themselves from the legions of mediocre and poorly executed records that make up most of the rest.

And then there are the collosal failures. You know what I'm talking about. The records that came after Wig Out and Scream for Change, to name a couple. The Hardcore "turkeys."

Since the Thanksgiving holiday is nearly upon us, I thought it might be fun to fire up a few of those Hardcore turkeys to celebrate the day. If you'd like to participate in the contest, please e-mail me your suggestion for Hardcore Music's All-Time Turkey at

I don't need an essay, and I don't need a list of all of the records you think fit the bill. I am looking for emails from BBHC readers nominating their Hardcore Music's All-Time Turkey, along with thoughts about the bands that realease them, the damage the bands did to themselves with the record, as well as the damage done to your fragile mental state and sense of hearing after giving the record a whirl or two.

The reader who makes the most compelling and amusing case for Hardcore Music's All-Time Turkey will be awarded one of the finest collections of fanzines ever assembled: Hardware Fanzine -- The Complete Collection, now available on CD format.

Please send all entries to me no later than Wednesday, November 23rd at 11:59 p.m. The winner will be announced at noon on Thanksgiving Day (US).

Saturday, November 19, 2005

Dancefloor Diaries

I am such a jack ass. I didn't go to this show because I decided that it was more important to keep my job at Cinnabon, rather than bail on work to go see No For An Answer (this would turn out to be my only opportunity to see them), Gorilla Biscuits, Insted, Beyond (only got to see them once, at Oliver J's in Allentown), and what would have been my first opportunity to see Chain of Strength.

My friends laughed at how stupid I was being, and they ended up taking my 10-year old brother to the show with them, as we would do from time to time. To this day, my brother could give two shits that he saw Chain of Strength, No For an Answer, Beyond, Insted, Gorilla Biscuits, JFA, Token Entry, Bold, Judge, Warzone, The Uprise, and Hogans Heroes -- all in their prime. If you ask him what was the best show he ever went to, he'd probably say Janes Addiction. Unreal.

Anyway, I lost touch with all of my highschool friends, and my brother has done too many drugs over the years to give me a reliable account of the show, so I contacted Steve Insted and picked his brain. These are a few of his memories of the evening:

"I remember that 'Wally's Place' was the place to play (in the Lehigh Valley) and that there was so much hype about it, that I had no choice but to feel like 'this is it?' after seeing it. I think this is the show where there was a classic photo of Kevin taken in his 'Drug Free Youth' shirt."

"A lot of kids and a low stage = good times."

"At one point Dan O' sat down on the floor 'indian style' and sang. Don't ask me, I don't get it, either. Tortured Artist, I guess. I wish Carry Nation would have played too."

"They were selling really bad GB shirts. White [cheap] t-shirts with a big orange GB with the hooded gorilla on the front, and a black live photo on the back [with 'gorilla' on the top and 'biscuits' on the bottom of the photo]. Don't worry I still wore mine even though they were horrible."

"Chain of Strength just showed up on the east coast [this show in particular] and hopped on to shows they weren't on. Normally I don't care about this kind of thing, and as much as I liked Ryan, I hated COS. I think Walter put it best once when he said 'they're like a bad house guest that won't leave.' I think the situation was this; Chris Bratton was out doing some shows with NFAA and the rest of the COS guys figured they could fly out and get on some shows. Whatever. Southern California hated them, and the East Coast and Euro's loved em'." Editor's Note -- Chain of Strength hopped on a bunch of NFAA sets during that tour, and were permitted by Dan O'Mahoney to play 2 songs. If you whip out your copy of True Til' Death, you'll notice that Side Alex says 'hey, can we play more than two songs?' and Side Pain says 'No Is Your Answer.' Fucking classic.--Ronny

Thursday, November 10, 2005

World Premier Video

Barebones Hardcore is happy to bring you the World Premier of "Insert Motivation Here" by The Fire Still Burns. Many thanks to Blackout Records for selecting BBHC to premier the video!

The Fire Still Burns
Insert Motivation Here

Tuesday, November 08, 2005

Contest: Set To Explode EP on Red Vinyl

The winner of the Set To Explode EP (compliments of Grave Mistake Records) has been awarded to Kevin Maher for his recollection of his punk-rock "Outsiders" moment in highschool.

Thank you so much for all of the great entries from all of you!

"I was introduced to hardcore by the local skateborders in my freshman year of High School, 1988. We lived in a suburb north of Boston and typical of most suburbs of the 1980’s any difference to the norm was not accepted. In fact, my town was completely polarized. You were either a jock/jock supporter or an outcast. The outcasts consisted of the small number of drama club kids and hardcore kids, who did not mix. I was an anomaly in that I was a varsity hockey player, yet I listened to hardcore kid and all of my friends skated. So, more often than not, I was in the middle of a lot of tension.

The summer between my junior and senior year of High School were particularly volatile in town. Specifically, there was a younger jock Mike Roy (whom we called Mike Roids because of his sudden growth “spurt”) who had a habit of jumping kids who were skating in the local shopping center. He always did it when you least expected and was joined by his friends. It happened so many times that kids started carrying weapons on them when they went to skate. By the time the school year started, there was a definite wall between the sides, so to speak.

About midway through September, a verbal war started between my friend Bob and Roids. Bob, like many of us, came from a broken home and, again like many of us, had some trouble with shooting his mouth off. Despite being relatively short, Bob didn’t think twice about starting a fight with a kid much larger than himself and he definitely was quick to talk shit. When Roids came after him, he wouldn’t back down, even when he probably should have. From what I later learned, something had happened between Roids and his girlfriend that clearly involved Bob. The shit talking escalated to an after school brawl with a selected location and everything. Straight out of a fucking movie.

Being a partial insider, I got word that Roids friends were going to “participate” in the fight, with the idea of causing Bob some serious harm. Therefore, we gathered every hardcore kid we could find (literally going house-to-house) to counter the attack. There were only a few of us with cars (me being one of them), but we stuffed those cars with every fringe hardcore kid (and maybe a drama geek or two) we could gather as well as a dozen baseball bats.

On the way to the fight spot (a parking lot in Livingston Street park), I remember blasting Judge in the car and screaming along to the lyrics. It seriously felt like our OUTSIDERS moment was at hand and I was totally ready for a brawl. As my blue Mazda crawled down Livingston Street, to my amazement, I saw what seemed like an endless field of kids. I swear the entire fucking school came for the fight! Bob, while dumb, was not totally out of it, and quickly came to his senses about whether or not to proceed. We parked a safe distance away from the spot and brainstormed on what to do next. After some discussion, I made my way down the long paved road to meet Roids & crew face-to-face. His offer was simple -- have Bob come down and fight one-on-one or else he’ll come for each of us individually.

I walked back to the car and told my friends the news. We were overwhelming on the same page —- Bob must fight Roids, and we’ll all jump in and kick his ass. David (+ crew) vs. Goliath. Never had I felt so united to a mission. We screamed at the top of our lungs, threw the bats in the trunk and jumped into the cars. The cars strolled down the length of the street again to the open lot where all were around. As we approached, Bob stuck his head out the window, screamed “Fuck you Roids” and threw a basketball at his head. Roids dropped. At this point, a crew of jocks jumped at my car, causing me to instinctively hit the gas, swerve around the crowd, and in the direction I just came. People ran after us, but once we hit the main road, we were free at last, laughing and talking about how funny it was when Roids hit the ground.

The next day in school, tensions were super high as everyone waited to see what would happen. As it turns out, Bob disappeared for a few days and when he came back things seemed to have blown over. Roids never followed up on his promise to kick all of our asses, though he did continue to jump the occasional unsuspecting kid.

My senior year was filled with back-and-forth antagonism between us and the football team. We were always outnumbered and I could not wait to graduate. The only thing that saved me from total boredom in High School was going to shows and listening to hardcore with friends. Seeing some of those same jocks later get into hardcore was always puzzling to me. Hardcore seemed to be the place for misfits, not the in crowd.

Thirteen years later, I’ve yet to go to a reunion, though I often wonder what happened to some of those kids that gave us such a hard time. God, I fucking hated high school."

-- Kevin Maher

Monday, November 07, 2005

Bring the Mosh, Motherfuckers!

"He who is not a mosher before he is 40 hath no heart. He who is still a mosher after he is 40 hath no head." -- Ancient Chinese Proverb

Check out: The Coalition Against Hardcore Dancing

The videos and hatemail are hilarious.

Saturday, November 05, 2005

Two Questions, Mr. McMahon

1. Where the hell is Schuster?

2. Why haven't I ever heard about this before?

We Load the Gun, and We Pull the Trigger

Friday, November 04, 2005

A Urinestorm To Purify

'Straight Edge' teen arrested in Reno
Suspect booked on battery charges after throwing cup of urine at van

Jaclyn O 'MALLEY
Posted: 10/18/2005

A Reno teen who follows the "Straight Edge" lifestyle was arrested on charges of throwing a cup of urine at a van full of California teens who asked him where to buy drugs, Reno police said.

The 16-year-old boy was booked into the Jan Evans Juvenile Detention Center on suspicion of battery related to Monday morning's road-rage incident. His name was not released because he is a juvenile.

Joseph Grund, 20, was cited for reckless driving.

Straight Edge refers to a philosophy of an alcohol- and drug-free lifestyle and no promiscuous sex. Officials say Straight Edge teens attend all Washoe County high schools in the district.

Earlier this year, the Regional Gang Unit classified Straight Edge as a gang after a six-month investigation into a series of violent crimes committed by a splinter group of teens who adhere to the lifestyle. Many Straight Edgers who contacted the Reno Gazette-Journal after a story about its gang designation disputed the classification and claimed the gangsters belong to another unaffiliated group.

About 12:30 a.m. Monday, an officer saw two cars speeding near Fifth and Bell Streets and stopped them. The seven people in the two cars claimed they were Straight Edge, police said.

Teens in a van that pulled over told the officer a boy in one of the cars threw urine inside their van after they asked him where they could buy some pills. The two cars then chased the van.

The 16-year-old told police he urinated inside a fast-food beverage cup and then threw the urine through the van's open driver's side window. He said he threw it in anger because drugs are against his beliefs. He later said it was a "stupid" and "vile" thing to do.

(Street by Street. Cup by Cup. -- Ronny)

Thursday, November 03, 2005

I Survived the Hardcore Scene and All I Got Were These Lousy T-shirts

Living in New York is expensive as shit. I’ve lived in both Philadelphia and Los Angeles; maintained crappy jobs, but lived somewhat comfortably. New York is different. Rent is triple and jobs are scarce. I had to sell off some of my most-prized possessions during the first few months I lived here - just to eat, have a bed to sleep in and a roof over my head. Now, simply surviving in this city feels like success. I’ve been here two years and counting and I can’t think of anywhere else I’d rather be.

I can’t say hardcore consumes me like it once did. Some of those aforementioned prized possessions I sold were my coveted hardcore records. I still have 99% of them. But the 1% I parted with on those early-hungry days, were the ones that really hurt. Antidote went to Tru from Malfunction records. He was nice enough to include the Thou Shall Not Kill bootleg with the transaction. Others like Urban Waste, AF “United Blood” and The Fix “Jan’s Rooms” have not been replaced and most likely never will be.

At one point in my life, no matter what I saw or heard, I would somehow relate it to hardcore. I’d hear Helmet on the Radio and think “ex members of Straight Ahead”. I’d smell incense burning and think Shelter/Youth Crew. I’d see a bottle of Jolt at 7-11 and think “Wide Awake thanked Jolt for being sold at the Anthrax”. In reality it was just alt-metal listened-to by college kids who burned incense to hide the smell of the weed they’d just smoked to come down from their 24 hour-cram session-Jolt-high.

I’ve always sort of swayed in and out of hardcore. After I left ROTP I took a break. Shark Attack launched me back into things, but was short lived. Next I sought refuge in LA where I found myself involved with Knife Fight and a brief but busy residency in Terror. I came home from LA/hardcore tired and burnt out. The next few years I buried my nose in books to finish college. Finally, the music bug caught me again, but this time I found myself playing Rock and Roll in the Big Apple.

I am going to be a contributor to BBHC. On what level, I don’t know. But writing about records and the possibility of some Shark Attack shows in the near future, the pendulum may be swinging back for me. Or - maybe it’s just my last stand. Regardless, here I am… watch out.


Tuesday, November 01, 2005

Set To Explode EP on Red Vinyl

You are looking at the brand new Set To Explode EP on red vinyl (limited to 300), brought to you by Grave Mistake Records. STX hail from Washington DC and feature ex-members of Striking Distance, 86 Mentality, The Aftermath, and Worn Thin.

This record is the first prize in what I hope will become a weekly contest where readers will have the opportunity to win limited vinyl, shirts, fanzines, etc. from various current labels that support Barebones Hardcore. Thanks to Alex DiMattesa and Rich Miles at Grave Mistake Records for providing this week's prize.

I first got into hardcore in 1986, but I didn't jump into it headfirst until 1987. When I started hanging around with all of the crazy punkers and skaters, a lot of people -- especially at school -- didn't get it. My sophomore year of high school, people saw my transformation from wallflower to punker as some kind of red flag. One time I got called into the guidance counselor's office because I was wearing a Suicidal Tendancies (white, with the skull wearing a red bandana...such a sweet shirt) shirt in homeroom. I wasn't aware of it, but apparently at the time I was crying out for help. Ha.

One time I came to school with a shaved down head and a Youth of Today t-shirt on. My drama teacher, Mrs. Franchois, was appalled. "Ronny Little" she chided, "a NAZI SKINHEAD! I am so disappointed in you!" Another time, my friends and I got hauled into the Vice Principal's office. All of us were certain he had us dead to rights on something, since we were all very destructive at school. We were standing at his desk, and he said "you boys haven't done anything wrong, but I just want to let all of you know that I think you are all very bizarre." My friend Mark looked at Mr. Stetzleberger's cowboy hat, then looked at him, and replied "I smell cowboys." The rest of us were excused, while Mark was asked to remain to have a chat about his comment.

Anyway, what I'm looking for is stories from all of you about your experiences at school when you first started getting into punk and hardcore. How the administration, teachers, and students reacted to you and your friends. Since nobody goes to Punk Rock Highschool, I know everyone out there has a story.

The author of the story I find most interesting will be awarded the Set To Explode EP on red vinyl. Contest ends Sunday, November 11th at 11:59 p.m. Winner will be announce Monday, November 12th at noon. All entries may be published by Barebones Hardcore!

I'm looking for conversational emails. There is no need to write up your entry like it's a professional piece. I'm looking for anecodotes, pure and simple, like something you'd see in "Banned in DC."

Thanks in advance for participating! Send all entries to me at: