Unboxing the Past

While American Hardcore showed up on my radar in 1984. It wasn’t until 86′ when I old enough to trade in getting turned away at the gates of CBGB’s to actually getting in and participating. While my earliest shows there included the likes of 7 Seconds, Jodie Fosters Army and Blast. It was the local bands I felt most closely aligned will. As I had gone from trips to Manhattan’s Tower Records and Bleeker Bob’s to seek out records from acts such as the Circle Jerks, Black Flag and The Dead Kennedy’s as early as 84′. It wasn’t until my first visits to nearby Some Records that I really found out what was happening in my ever expanding back yard. Those early trips to Duane’s basement refuge allowed me to get to know the bands and people involved in what was a very communal scene. One of the bands I caught on to early on was the N.Y. Hoods. The Hoods, along with a handful of bands like Krakdown, Side By Side, Sick of it All and Token Entry filled my ears while guiding me on a course I’d follow for years to come.

N.Y. Hoods (1 of 1)

Years later I would sell all my original demo cassettes and first pressings on Ebay. While the monetary returns seem great at the time. The regret I would later feel, far outweighed my choice to sell. Years later, the demo was reissued as a 7′ inch EP, but in all honesty. The reissue could never replace the feeling that little cassette tape gave me. That was until my neighbor and friend knocked on the door. Once again bringing me a blast from our shared past. And while the reels may never again scream out “Mirrors of Reality”. The image itself will allow me to have tangible evidence of a part of my past I am still very fond of. Here’s to the next knock on my door. J.D. 

N.Y. Hoods Lyrics (1 of 1)

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Sticker Shock; Crippled Youth / BOLD

By now I should be used to my neighbor and good friend stopping by with a little gift or surprise every now and again. What initially started as an invite to lunch for a few freelancers in the building a little over a year ago, quickly burgeoned into a friendship that has continued to flourish as my first year here has come and gone. So when he knocked on my door moments after we returned from a weekend trip. I can’t say I was a bit surprised. When he brought his hand out of his back pocket to reveal a Crippled Youth sticker. 3-0001It’s easy to say, I was grasping for the words to express why I was taken back almost thirty years ago when I first purchased my Crippled Youth “Join the Fight” 7′ inch and accompanying sticker at the legendary Some Records. While by no means were Crippled Youth one of my favorite HXC bands. They played one of the first Hardcore matinees I ever attended. Soon after, perhaps due to the urging of friend and Youth of Today frontman Ray Cappo. They would change their name to BOLD and go on to release one full length “Speak Out” and a self titled 7″ on Revelation Records. As I mentioned before Crippled Youth / BOLD were never personal favorites. However, being that “Join the Fight” was one of my earlier Hardcore records and more important, how I lost it when a close friend who had borrowed my copy just weeks before when he unexpectedly went to prison for a vicious murder. It remains ever-present in my mind as part of my history. Seeing that sticker for the first time in more than twenty-five years jogged a lot of memories both good and bad. Being that it came from someone who has become such a good friend brought a sense of closure. Amazing how often people with shared common interests and histories can be found just down the hall . Thanks Kevin. J.D.

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Sand in the Face – Music Made to Riot; New Jersey Hardcore 1982- 1983

Music Made to Riot collects the very earliest recordings of Montville, NJ’s Sand in the Face.             Largely recorded at Boonton, NJ’s Mix-O-Lydian Studios. The same studio that had already given us The Misfits “Walk Among Us”.The demos within feature the pre-LP lineup of                 Pete (Aaron) Wegele, (bass, vocals) Paul Schraft (vocals, guitar) and Mark “Munk” Lombardi, who sadly died of cancer in 2010 on drums.I found this to be a fun and quick listen. matw1204
A good time capsule highlighting the first wave of NJ Hardcore (Something I believe to be criminally overlooked.) Overall the tracks are what you’d expect from a young band getting to know themselves as well as their musicianship in the early days of Hardcore. A trio of high school kids getting to know their sound while working in the studio for the first time. Snotty, mid to fast paced teenage anthems A sound akin to such contemporaries Adrenaline O.D. and Bedlam. “Music Made to Riot” compiles eighteen tracks in all and  is accompanied by detailed liner notes written by Wegele himself. His dedicating the release to his departed friend and band mate is, to say the least, touching. Limited to 600 copies. My one complaint, if any, is that this did not come with a digital download. Something that would have come in handy when compiling my New Jersey Hardcore mix tape. J.D.

Available Here