Friday, June 3, 2011

Straight Outta Concord

Places like Concord are a breeding ground for young punk rock malcontents. In fact, I think I’ve met more punks from this town than anywhere else in the East Bay. Located thirty-ish miles away from San Francisco, Concord is generally thought of as another East Bay suburban tweaker shithole. The recent redevelopment in the area may have pushed some of those elements further east to towns like Antioch, but it will be a while before Concord’s reputation is erased from the minds of many.

Straight Outta Concord was the second release on Six Weeks Records, documenting a few bands from there that managed to make some kind of impression on the greater East Bay punk scene. Whether those impressions were good or not is a different story, though. Concord punk rock and the East Bay/Gilman scene have had an “interesting” relationship over the years. If I may hazard a guess as to why, I’d say that Concord was probably considered lower on the totem pole, despite most of the early ‘90s Gilman punks being from similarly trashy suburbs like Pinole and El Sobrante. Even society’s rejects need somebody to shit on occasionally.

The back cover makes a note of that with a message reading “this record is dedicated to every other band that’s been unappreciated, unsupported, or banned by their own scene.” They’re not kidding. Anal Mucus were tagged as “sexist” for having a band logo in the shape of people having sex (insert Spinal Tap joke here) and banned from playing at Gilman Street. People from Spitboy and Econochrist accused Total Fucked of being Nazis and caused them to be attacked on the Gilman stage by members of a local ARA group. The Dread didn’t get along with the early ‘90s Gilman clique either, despite bassist Athena hosting Blatz at one of her numerous house parties. Brady from the Aborted moved to Oakland a few years after this compilation was released and began playing guitar for the Criminals and Black Cat Music, so his band might be the only one that got off easy.

I realize that I haven’t said anything about the music itself, but I think educated readers of The Evil Eye already know what it sounds like. Although this compilation was intended to be Gilman-unfriendly, all four of these bands sound like they should have been regularly opening for Green Day, Blatz, and Filth circa 1992. I wonder if that irony is some consolation for any resentment that may still exist after twenty years. None of that shit matters to you, so click here.


Anonymous said...

the Aborted did a split with a band that had a cop in it, is that enough to banish them to the Concord shit list?

Anonymous said...

RIP Stevie Hanson! I'll answer lingering resentment question-no. Anal Mucus still plays and played Gilman many times after their
Bannning." interesting thoughts on a weird record!

Anonymous said...

Who DIDN'T Spitboy accuse of being Nazis??