Those first three tricks, and the guitar chords. Skateboarding 1984. This music was written to skate big concrete transitions to…
Now I just use it to jam through traffic on a road bike.
Back to the other day: Here’s a good Underdog profile from Thrasher by Mike Gitter from 1989.
Unfortunately relevant 27 years later…
Hey all the political stuff was great but this is better for skating:
and one more from Token Entry:
It’s funny that in that Underdog interview they’re talking about being ostracized by the hardcore scene. That hardcore scene would be essentially dead by 1991 anyway and the suburbs would dominate for a couple years. Underdog would break up shortly (months?) after this interview and alternative heavy metal hardcore crossover band Into Another would pop up a year or two later with Richie singing and a non-straight edge Drew Bold on drums…
…and the only people digging it were hardcore kids…
Listening to this now: I’m getting the idea that Richie was purposely trying to alienate hardcore kids with these lyrics about satan and demons, the fashion, the indulgent guitar solo 25 seconds in, and the prominent long hairs. A lot of interviews I read with him at the time he was working hard to separate himself from the next generation of hardcore kids. I liked the first album and so did most people I know from that generation. It was on Revelation Records, it’s odd. It came out after Shelter, Judge “The Storm”, Burn, Inside Out, and Quicksand. Stylistically it’s far from hardcore, but at it’s base it’s still connected. All of those bands were looking to break free from the mold they created themselves: musically or spiritually. The younger generation that bought the records and went to the shows let them do what they wanted.
Richie went to Angelica Kitchen in 2000-01 routinely, I waited on him a bunch of times and I really had nothing to say except “Hey how’s it going? What could I get for you today?”. Some people from that era that were more outgoing I was real into filling in the blanks with. He seemed to be into his privacy and reading those older interviews he didn’t seem like the type of dude who’d want to tell you about anything. (I mean then… I saw a picture online recently where he was doing a QnA with Tony R, Paul Bearer and someone else in front of a crowd at an art gallery in Brooklyn.) He often had lunch with the dude Frankie who DJ’ed 80’s night at Don Hill’s. That’s all I can really remember about him.
…and what happened to Token Entry? They put out this record and then broke up.
A lot of bands were trying to branch out from hardcore music and it didn’t work. Funky guitar and bass were in style…or heavy metal…or rap…or pop…or noise…or industrial…or grunge…or alternative. Straight up hardcore was out of style for the masses. It took 4 or 5 years of bands trying to figure out “What’s next?” for people to return to the roots of it all.
Tim Chunks moved to New Brunswick, NJ and stayed at the Bouncing Souls house. (The Bouncing Souls were a weird funk/punk band that were friends with NJ skinheads, not the pop punk band they would become when they moved to NY.)
This was their big song. See what the heck is this music? Funky Token Entry Avail core.
Tim Chunks sang for a band called Headstrong and Ernie started Black Train Jack which was a commercially successful, Token Entry influenced pop punk band that would cover the chorus of “The Edge” during their shows.
Here’s one of their videos, it’s got a messenger on an MTB in it and some skating.
To me BTJ kind of sounded like the Hard-Ons an Australian Surf/Skate rock band…
(There’s some BTJ videos online from the end of City Gardens. They were very popular with the Mighty Mighty Bosstones normal people crowd- 93 alternative rockstars. The crowd cheers when they come on stage and a bunch of fans gives them high 5’s after the show. The thing where you put your hand up in the air and wait in line for a high five from your hero. City Gardens was pretty bland at the end. The crowd softened up so much over a year or two. Think about that Exploited show we were talking about the other day, and then watch one of those City Gardens BTJ videos. )
Chuck Treece! What an influential musician! Much respect Chuck.
There was an Underdog reunion at the Trocadero in 1996. We were heckling them a little bit because Chuck wasn’t there.
A:”We couldn’t afford him.”
I had the Vanishing Point before I had Bad Brains records. I bought the tape new at the mall. The reggae influenced stuff, I was into it. So then I heard the Bad Brains and was like “Oh, I see”
It’s weird to think about the handful of people that influenced me into different directions as an adolescent… Chuck Treece (music and skating), Mike Gitter (writing about hardcore music), Pushead (drawing record covers, having a record label, and reviewing records)…to name a few… Without them maybe there wouldn’t be a Landlords.