Saturday, July 14, 2012

A History in Flyers


After much procrastinating, I finally scanned my entire flyer collection. It consists of 63 punk flyers from Springfield and Joplin spanning approximately the years 1993-2001. Several of them were created by yours truly, and I have memories attached to just about all of them. (Anyone else remember the U$MC/Quincy Punks/Blanks 77/Dropkick Murphys show? Or the somewhat disastrous first show at Harper’s Bizarre?) They’re split into two files, and are roughly chronological until near the end, where I threw in some extra odd and ends stuff.  If you have any good stories about any of these shows, please share in the comments.


Saturday, May 26, 2012

Yes, I’m Still Here

It was recently brought to my attention that several of this site’s links were broken. It seems that MediaFire has the habit of randomly deleting files. I re-uploaded everything that was missing—if anyone finds any more broken links in the future please write me at the e-mail address listed at the right and I’ll fix them ASAP. Thanks. And while my posting rate has obviously slowed quite a bit, I am planning on posting some new stuff in the coming months—stay tuned.

Friday, November 18, 2011

Initial Detonation-1997 Demo

This demo was recorded in ID's early days, when they still had Steve on guitar/co-vocals (he later quit the band and was replaced by Ritchie and Garry from Satan's Ice Cream Truck). The sound quality is decent, and the tape is notable in that three of the five songs were never re-recorded anywhere else-"Homeless" and "Pro-Life???" are originals, while "Rehumanize Yourself" has lyrics lifted from a song by the Police (!).

1. Did You?
2. Homeless
3. Mary Kay Commandos
4. Pro Life???
5. Rehumanize Yourself

Enjoy

Thursday, June 2, 2011

The Itch Releases A Benefit Album For Joplin


As I’m sure everyone knows, a devastating tornado hit Joplin, MO on May 22nd, killing at least 138 people and destroying a large part of the town. Many of the fine bands profiled on this site hailed from there. It’s very fitting then that the Itch, a Springfield/Joplin garage rock act has released a live recording with all proceeds being donated to the Joplin United Way. I really encourage everyone to give generously to this cause. You can find the album download here.

Saturday, July 3, 2010

The Magic Bean

The Magic Bean has been a fixture in the Springfield DIY music scene for fifteen years now. I remember going to punk shows there when the place fist opened on Kimbrough. It later moved to a location on National across for MSU, where it remains today. I personally dealt with the Bean’s owner Jeff many times when booking shows, and I’m glad someone finally made the effort to put up a Facebook page expressing our collective feelings towards him. Here’s to you, Magic Bean.



Saturday, May 29, 2010

Now Or Never-1991 Demo

Ah, we come full circle. The very first post on this blog was the Now Or Never live tape. In that post, I said that NON was the best punk band to ever emerge from the Ozarks. This demo tape confirms that opinion, even if I think the live tape is better. It features a lot of songs not on the live recording, and the rough production can’t hide the fine paying by the band. Thanks again to Dave for providing this stuff.


1. Ten Second Song

2. Now Or Never

3. Ignorance

4. Sexism

5. Changes

6. Stagnation

7. Censorship

8. The Seven Year Itch

9. Cynical Cycle

10. Dr. Frankenstein

11. Expectations

12. Backwards Thinking

13. Fuckhole

14. Thin Man

15. Muckraker


Enjoy



Saturday, May 8, 2010

Force Fed Patriots

I’ve had a lot of requests for some FFP stuff, so I’m glad I was finally able to get a hold of the tapes. Dave (who also ran the Commercial Street Club and sang in Now or Never) was the band’s only constant member, and they went through several incarnations over the years. The original FFP was a punk cover band formed with Dave on guitar, Frank on bass, Chris on vocals, and Debbie on drums in 1987. They only played out a couple of times, but managed to record a two-song demo (one song is a GBH cover originally entitled “Knife’s Edge”; I’m not sure about the other one). The band got back together in 1988 as a three-piece with Dave on guitar, Derek on drums and Kevin on bass (Derek and Kevin later joined the Rising Sun). This time the band wrote some original songs, and once again recorded a two-song demo before splitting up. After Now or Never folded in 1992, Dave decided to make use of the name for a third time. He needed a house band for the Commercial Street Club, and already had a FFP tattoo. This incarnation was around for about a year, with Dave on guitar again, Klint on bass, Kit (aka Eggboy) on vocals and Jody on drums. They recorded the full-length “Flag Flying Parade” demo in 1992. The tape has a goofy, vaguely political style, and features some prank calls made by members of the band (a popular form of entertainment in the days before caller ID). FFP broke up for the final time in 1993.


1987 Demo

1. Edge of a Knife

2. War Games


1988 Demo

3. Force Fed Patriots

4. Polyester Beauty Queen


Flag Flying Parade Demo

5. Bush Duke Puke

6. Force Fed

7. Faith

8. Myself

9. Saturday

10. Fuckin Shit

11. Mistake

12. Hello?

13. Circus

14. Man

15. Rage (live)

16. Mirror

17. Snake

18. Myself II (live)

19. Hello? II


Thanks again to Dave for getting this stuff to me.


Enjoy

Saturday, April 3, 2010

The Heart Of Rock ‘n Roll Is Still Beating

A while back I wrote a post speculating that there wasn’t much going on in Springfield these days as far as hardcore punk rock goes, but was hoping to be proven wrong. Luckily, I was. I was recently in my hometown, and managed to catch an honest-to-God punk show downtown at Nathan P. Murphy’s. About 40 punks showed up, which is roughly what we drew back in the day. First up was Rogue Nation, a harsh sounding four-piece with an aggressive style (nice Body Count cover, guys). They have a demo CD, several tracks of which are available on their website. The second band that evening was Mr. Bucket, and quite an experience they were. Tight, fast, and raunchy, the band sports some catchy songs as well as a charismatic female vocalist (I think just about any kind of music is improved by female singers). If you’re in or around Springfield anytime soon, check to see if either of these worthy acts is playing. And for God’s sake bring some earplugs. (It’s been too long since my last punk show-I forgot to bring mine. My ears were still ringing the next day.)

On a side note, I recently hit the punk rock mother load in the form of a box of tapes sent to me by Dave, the singer in Now or Never. Lots of choice old stuff, some of which I didn’t even know existed. I’ll be transferring the tapes and posting them over the next few weeks. Stay tuned.

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Arkansas Punk Rock Compilation CD

You may have noticed that all of the punk stuff I’ve posted here so far has been from the Missouri side of the Ozarks. Thankfully, Eric from Fayetteville sent me a link to this compilation, which does a great job of covering the Arkansas Ozark punk scene. Released by the non-profit radio station 88.3 FM and the Art Amiss collective, the CD has 22 tracks from 22 bands, most of them from the Fayetteville area. It’s mostly stuff recorded from 2005-2009, but is notable for having one song by the Malls, a new wave/punk act that formed in 1979. (They were almost certainly the first punk act from Arkansas. Grand Theft Audio should put together a retrospective on those guys). The download also contains a file with bios and contact information on all the bands. This is a great release, and it’s good to know there are still people creating punk music in places you might not expect.

Enjoy

Friday, February 12, 2010

Fistfight In The Parking Lot

OK, this one isn’t Ozark-related, but rarely do you see a mainstream network show do a fairly authentic parody of punk rock. This clip from last week’s episode of Saturday Night Live seems to have been written by someone with an actual background in the style. Anyone taking bets on how long before an actual punk band covers this?

Friday, January 29, 2010

Seduction Of The Innocent: How One Kid Got Into Punk Rock

In another interview segment from Mike, he describes a pivotal time in any punk kid’s life: How he was first exposed to the underground DIY scene.

I grew up on a small beef farm about half an hour from Springfield, and attended k-12 in a small town of about 3,000 white people. I went to my first “real” underground punk show around age 16, in 1990 or ‘91. Months earlier, a friend named Chip and I saw the Dead Milkmen and he was wearing a shirt he’d bought at the show when he was shopping somewhere with his mom. Upon seeing that shirt, these two crazy looking people gave Chip a birthday card that had “happy birthday” scratched out and the time and directions to a show at the Commercial Street Club scrawled inside. Later, he showed me the card and we decided we’d go if we could gather up a couple of carloads of friends for safety. Punk had an exaggerated reputation for being violent, as did all of Commercial Street at that time. I remember it was one of Now or Never’s earliest shows, and I think Walking Octopus or The Rising Sun may also have played that night (they were older local punk bands) and headlining was a band from KC or St. Louis or thereabouts, they may have been called Never Alone or something like that (I just remember they also had “Never” in their name). Now or Never made by far the biggest impression on me of all the bands, but the event itself, the whole unconventional scene, the freaky punkers, the radical political overtones, the dilapidated venue casting menacing shadows on eerie old railroad tracks in the bad part of town, just the absolute craziness of it all completely captivated me and immediately I began to fall in love with the punk movement. None of the other people I came with seemed impressed at all, and none of them ever came to another show, except for Chip who occasionally made one, but I distinctly remember only missing two shows there (one for sickness, one for girlfriend issues) for the next several years until Dave stopped booking at that venue.

Friday, January 15, 2010

A Punk Veteran Tells His War Stories

Mike is an old friend of mine, and was involved in the Springfield punk scene for several years before I was. He was interviewed for the Riverfront Times article on the Ozark punk underground that came out last year, but only a small part of the interview was used. Here’s a longer chunk, with Mike answering the question “Did you attend any particularly memorable local punk shows?”

Wow, I’m afraid to even begin to try to answer this, there were so many. There were many shows that seemed to lift me out of my body in an ecstasy I’ve since learned may be akin to religious experience. A positive, joyful, profound release and enlightenment on many levels is what I took away from countless shows, but the ones that make the most interesting stories are the opposite, where serious violence occurred or even where its threat immensely intensified everything. This always seemed to be provoked by nazi skinheads.
There was a show where a fearless band named Demise (from Detroit? Minneapolis? Milwaukie?) stood up to very offended, very angry, and very much larger skinheads during a terrifying live set. What’s just as impressive, Demise came back several months later and played for us again! This time the knuckleheads didn’t show up but the band told us about having their house burned to the ground by angry nazis in their hometown!
There was the time Dave decided to book a show at an old bar further down Commercial Street for a change. Schlong (from the Bay Area, maybe?) was the out-of-town headliners, but they never got to play. Skinheads went on the rampage early on, there was lots of blood and people running everywhere, I hid behind the bar with all the members of Schlong who surprised me when they said they had never seen anything like what was going on and shouldn’t we call the cops!? There was an African-American bar nearby, and eventually an actual riot of sorts broke out between their patrons and the skinheads on the street in front of the bar. That’s when we made our escape, while bottles were thrown at us and cars suddenly screeched to a stop and reversed in high speed away from the melee!
Then there was the return of the infamous, legendary NYC hardcore band Born Against. There first show at Commercial Street dropped our jaws to the floor – none of us had ever witnessed anything that hardcore. But nazis had been waiting for their second visit all day at the club, and attacked them with brass knuckles and such as soon as they tried to exit their van! They fled and called Dave, who set up another venue for them at a friend’s basement and started spreading the word to regulars on where to go. Somehow the nazis found out where it was and showed up in force. After some crazy violence in the guy’s house, the nazis were driven outside and SHARPs were called who quickly showed up and began a face-off with the nazis in this guy’s front yard! I saw clubs, chains, weaponized vodka bottles, an actual meat cleaver, and even a flashed gun before cop sirens started blaring in our direction and everyone scattered. That was the infamous end of the Commercial Street Club (which has now become a police sub-station!). Our town gained some notoriety as Born Against thanked everyone in Springfield, MO who saved them “from certain death” on the inside cover of one of their last albums. Last but certainly not least, there was the GG Allin show in Joplin, for which the aforementioned Syphilis opened, but that’s a whole other phenomenon in itself!

Friday, December 18, 2009

The Rowskabouts

At the risk of turning this into the Ozark Ska Page, let me mention one more important act from Joplin before we move on. The Rowskabouts were my personal favorite Ozark ska band from the 90’s. They had a goofy, upbeat, energetic style that was a blast to witness. My copy of their demo tape is way too worn out to be posted here, but luckily you can find most of the tracks from it streaming on their MySpace page. It’s worth checking out. They also have a reunion gig coming up in Joplin on Dec. 23rd, 2009. Those in the area should try to make it out.

Friday, December 4, 2009

Hubcap-Rob And Wes Like Cake Any Way You Slice It Demo Tape

I’ve had several Joplin natives tell me that Hubcap was one of the best local ska bands back in the day, often sharing bills with Big Bad Chubba. I for the life of me can’t remember ever seeing or hearing of them, but their tape is pretty solid 90’s ska stuff. The quality is a little rough, but this is apparently a hard one to track down, so once again I guess we have to be happy with what we can find. Thanks again to John, and if anyone has clearer memories than I do about these guys, please share them in the comments.

1. Let’s Go!
2. Pokerface
3. Go Hair
4. Rob n Roll
5. Noodles
6. Wes Side Story
7. Agent 99
8. Go
9. Obstruction

Enjoy

Friday, November 20, 2009

Big Bad Chubba-Tha Bootleg! Demo Tape

Big Bad Chubba was a notable ska act based in Joplin in the late 1990’s. Members of the band later went on to play in acts like Vaginal Discharge and The Itch. I booked a few shows for these guys back in the day, but didn’t really know much about the band. If anyone has any memories to share, please do so in the comments. My own lack of knowledge aside, they played tight straight-up 90’s style ska, and this recording is a good representation of their work. Special thanks to John for sending this stuff to me.

1. New Shoes
2. Murder Lane
3. Silly Girl
4. Chubba You and Me
5. 42 Cigarettes
6. Kill the Kid
7. Crockett Express
8. Untitled Instrumental
9. On-Line Love

Enjoy

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Chris Schultz 1972-2009

I recently received the sad news that Chris Schultz had passed away. To say Chris was a controversial figure in the Springfield punk scene would be an understatement. In his young years he ran with the local Nazi skinhead crew. Later he dropped the racist ideology and became a somewhat active player in the punk music underground. His band, Violent Karma, was a magnet for drunken thugs and skins, and their shows often ended badly. But a lot of people didn’t know that Chris was actually an intelligent guy who could be a lot of fun to hang out with. I remember going over to Chris’s place back in the day and listening to Crass and Fear albums while we debated the virtues and faults of various bands. Chris always carried a lot of pain with him. His best friend Sludgy (the bass player in Violent Karma) passed away years ago, a blow from which he undoubtedly had difficulty recovering from. Chris was a complex man, and at one time I called him a friend. I’m sorry to hear he’s gone.

Friday, October 9, 2009

Noise With A Beat Compilation Cassette

Released in 1997 by Wee Rock Records, this compilation featured 27 songs by 14 local acts. Musically, the tape goes from so-so alt-rock (such as Monumental Radio) to screeching hardcore punk (such as U$MC, with the tracks coming from an early demo tape with their original guitar player Brian). The compilation is also notable for having tracks from some fairly obscure Ozark bands like The Acronyms and Piezo Transducer (both side projects by the members of Fugue), as well as the obnoxiously cutesy Carbon Star (“The Wee-Wee Song” still makes me want to strangle someone) and Erector Set, a short-lived Springfield based punk three-piece. Finally, the tape has a couple of songs by Big Bad Chubba and The Rowskabouts, two worthy Joplin ska acts whose full-length demos I’m still trying to track down. There’s way too many track titles to list here-just download the thing and experience an interesting (if uneven) snapshot of the 90’s SW Missouri underground music scene.

Download

Monday, August 10, 2009

The Debs

I’ve briefly mentioned the Debs before on this blog. They were a Ramones/Joan Jett-inspired all-girl garage act that played out in Springfield in the late 70’s. They’re getting together for a reunion show on Saturday August 15th, 2009 at the Outland Ballroom in Springfield (they play at 10:00). I wish I were in town to go to the show. If anyone can make it over there and check it out, please share your thoughts in the comments. In the meantime, you should take a look at their MySpace page; judging from the couple of songs posted, they were quite a rocking band.

Friday, August 7, 2009

The Vault of Punk

I’m at long last getting near the end my list of things to post here. There are still some tapes I’d like to track down (like stuff by the Rowskabouts, Vanilla Christ, Force Fed Patriots, and the Now or Never demo), but postings on here may slow down a bit. To compensate for that I’ve decided to start another blog on which I’ll post my favorite punk and hardcore releases that are now out of print (or in a few cases never in print to start with). So mosey your web browser over to The Vault of Punk and check out some obscure underground treasures. I’ll be adding more stuff over there as time goes on, and make sure you check back here now and then for the occasional update.

Friday, July 24, 2009

Barbie Holocaust-1996 Demo

Barbie Holocaust was a Springfield-based band that was around for a couple of years in the mid-1990’s. They played poppy-punk with a grunge influence, and were notable for a couple of unusual things: Guitarist Matt and bass player/vocalist Rudie were all of 14 years old when they started the band, and drummer Annette was Rudie’s mom. They released a well played but poorly recorded demo tape in 1995, and then this superior demo in 1996. Professionally recorded, the tape featured some strong songwriting and playing. It was the last thing to be released by the band.

1. A Bomb
2. When I Grow Up
3. Sue the World
4. Sick of It
5. We Will Become U
6. Erase

Enjoy

Friday, July 10, 2009

Fugue-Sings Your New Favorites CD-R

Fugue was a long-running Springfield pop-punk act that released several CD’s and tapes over the years (their Best Of CD-R is still available). Recorded in 1999 and released in 2000, this was their last (and probably best) recording. It has a somewhat goofy and fun sound, yet is very well played and recorded. The two key members of the band, Justin and Jason, were very involved in the scene, running venues like the 423 Club and starting Wee Rock Records (a Springfield underground music label that’s still going strong today). They currently play in The Fine Lines, a garage rock band that has a significant following both here and in Europe.

1. Riot
2. Dan is Dumb
3. Drunken H.S. Girls
4. Randy
5. Through My Head
6. Cristina King
7. Begin or Lose
8. Media Dream Girl
9. Take a Stand
10. Litterbug
11. (No) Boneheads
12. Point Lookout
13. Lovin' You Is Stupid
14. Thinking
15. Good
16. Pukin' Over You
17. Nine Seconds of Silence
18. My Devil

Enjoy

Saturday, June 27, 2009

11 Blade

This band isn’t based in the Ozarks, but seeing that two of their three members are alumni of the old SW Mo underground scene, I think their inclusion here is appropriate. 11 Blade plays agro hardcore stuff with a considerable amount of skill, and recently put out a self-released CD that was produced by a former member of White Zombie. Based out of New Orleans, the band is fronted by Jay, who used to play in Springfield punk acts Squelch and General Zod. Beth, the band’s bass player, used to be a member of Odd Things Happen When It’s 60 Below, a Springfield-based ska act. They have a MySpace page with audio clips, band news, and info on how to get their CD. Their stuff is also available through itunes. (I remember the days when if you were an underground DIY band you released demo tapes with crudely photocopied covers that would be heard by maybe 100 people. Now you can get instant worldwide exposure if you’re willing to pay itunes’ fees. Times they are a’changin’.) Give their stuff a listen, and hear modern hardcore in action.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

The Rising Sun-United We Stand Demo Tape

At long last I have located a copy of the elusive Rising Sun demo. It’s a copy of a copy, and the sound wobbles in a few spots, but on this one beggars can’t be choosers. The Rising Sun was around from about 1988 to 1990, and is generally regarded as being the first hardcore punk band to come out of Springfield, Mo (and probably the Ozarks in general). I hadn’t listened to this tape in years, and I must say it holds up pretty well. It has a real 80’s punk sound, and a few of the songs (particularly “America” and “Afraid”) hold up as great thrash-punk. The Rising Sun was also notable as one of the first anti-racist skinhead bands in the U.S., and the song “We Don’t Care” is a forceful “fuck off” to the local Nazi crew (this is a problem that still plagues Springfield, unfortunately). This demo was recorded in 1989, and was the only thing released by the band. The band’s singer Joe later sang for another Springfield skinhead act, Violent Karma, which ironically had a sizeable Nazi following. I never had the privilege of seeing the Rising Sun play live; if anyone has any stories to tell, please share them in the comments.

1. America
2. Think for Yourself
3. Afraid
4. We Don't Care
5. Fight
6. Co-Existence
7. Fight Back
8. You Just Want
9. Confusion
10. Help Me


Enjoy

P.S. The above photo of the tape cover was jacked from a blog posting by Laurie, a scene regular from the old days. She posted a bunch of other pictures of memorabilia from the old Springfield underground music scene; you can see the rest of the photos here.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

The Other Ozark Underground


Forgive me for getting non-punk for a moment, but I don’t know how this website has escaped my attention for so long. The Underground Ozarks is a way cool webpage with accounts and photos from people who have explored some of the forbidden places around SW Missouri. They cover some sites I was familiar with already (Albino Farm, the Acid Tunnels [pictured], and my old day camp Ritter Springs) along with some that were unknown to me (the MSU Tunnels, Phenix). The site hasn’t been updated in a while (although the message board is still active), but it’s still a great resource on a little known part of the Ozarks.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Walking Octopus-Unreleased Demos 1986-1992

Walking Octopus was an early Springfield punk/garage act that played out from the mid 1980’s to the early 1990’s. They fused rock n’ roll and punk with a somewhat goofy and upbeat lyrical style. They were a regular at the old Commercial Street Club, and had a decent fan base back in the day. Members of the band later turned up in other acts such as Dunce Cap, the Cheerleaders, and Unteen. Despite their relative popularity and frequent recording sessions, the band never released any music. The cuts here are taken from a mishmash of recordings made from 1986 to 1992. The sound quality is excellent, as are the performances on the tapes. It’s a shame they were never heard publically at the time of the band’s existence, but it’s good to know that at long last they’re now available to anyone who wants to hear them.

1. Lynching at the Hoedown
2. Gone Are the Days
3. Draining Out
4. Shithead
5. Jellybean
6. Moving
7. Sex With A Russian Spy
8. Insects Inherit the Earth
9. Blueshead
10. Changes Come
11. Stupid
12. Untitled Instrumental

Enjoy

Friday, March 13, 2009

A Lesson In Punk Rock Economics: The Harper’s Bizarre Ledgers

I moved a while ago, and in doing so came across an interesting bit of punk history: the financial ledgers of the Harper’s Bizarre club, which operated in Springfield circa 1996-1997. They provide a good example of how DIY music shows were run at the time, as well as how little money is to be made in such endeavors. Let’s start with a small show. On Oct. 26th, 1996 the Richards played along with Dysfunctional Family and the Sex Offenders, both out of Kansas City. 51 people paid to get in, which was actually pretty solid for a Springfield show (Joplin shows usually drew better). At four bucks a head, that comes to $204. A few Cokes were sold at a buck a piece, and the bands sold some tapes and shirts for themselves. At the end of the night, the club had $214. Both of the KC bands got $40, and the Richards got $20 for gas, making for a profit of about $90. Not bad, but consider that the rent on the place was $425 a month. On Aug. 30th of that same year, Naked Aggression (a fairly popular anarcho-punk act at the time) played with Brine and Squelch. 60 people paid to get in, plus the club sold a bunch of Cokes and waters, bringing the profit for the night to $286. Naked Aggression was guaranteed $200, along with $20 for a couple of pizzas (they also got a free place to sleep that night). Brine got $40, as their singer had to drive in from KC. Squelch got nada, as was the norm at the club for bands that came from in town. That left the club a grand total of…$26. You can start to see here why booking smaller time punk acts was often more profitable, at least in the Ozarks at that time: About the same number of people would show up, but you could pay the bands less money. For a good laugh, consider the Mustard Plug/Rowskabouts/Bishops show on Oct. 12th, 1996. Mustard Plug was a pretty big ska act, while the Rowskabouts brought out the Joplin folks. The Bishops, if I remember right, were a local ska band from Columbia, Mo. Punk shows are usually a handshake thing; contracts are very rarely used. You could make a lot of money off of ska bands, but they were a bit too professional for their own good. Consider the contract in this case. The club was supposed to supply “a clean, well lit, lockable dressing room able to comfortably accommodate 5 to 10 people”. Those of you who remember Harper’s Bizarre are no doubt laughing by now, as the club had nothing even remotely approaching a dressing room. I won’t even get into the P.A. requirements, which a DIY punk club could not even hope to meet. All of this was explained to the booking agency beforehand, yet they signed the contract anyway. Contract silliness aside, the show was profitable (as I noted, ska was a good moneymaker). 74 people paid to get in at $6 a head, giving a total of $444. Drink sales took the total to about $460. Mustard plug got $200 plus a $50 meal buy out. The Bishops got $40, and the Rowskabouts got $20. The club ended up with about $150. Perhaps the ultimate moral of this economic story: If you want to make any real amount of money running a music club, book cover bands and sell alcohol. Only book punk if you love it.

Monday, February 23, 2009

Unteen

In this age of post-punk techno crap, it’s good to know that there are still a few bands like Unteen around who play old style punk rock, in this case with the emphasis on the rock. The band is a Springfield based four-piece including former members of Walking Octopus and Brine. They’ve released a CD (available at their very cool website, which also has free mp3 downloads, flyers, and some very well done comics by and about the band), and play fairly regularly around the Springfield area. They also have a MySpace page, and you can see some additional photos here. I haven’t had a chance to see these guys play yet, but given the quality of what I’ve heard, I intend to the next time I’m in town.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Shameless Commercialism

I recently moved, and while doing so discovered a box with some forgotten copies of the Obey: We Have Guns 7” comp. I’ve decided to sell them for the low, low price of…oh let’s say $5.00 each postage paid. Sure, you can already download the contents of the 7” on this very site, but I’m giving you the opportunity to own an actually piece of Ozark punk rock history! These are original pressings, with the accompanying booklet and stickers. If you’re interested, e-mail me at ozarkpunkrock * hot/mail dot com and I’ll write back with my mailing address. Supplies are very limited, so don’t miss out on this once in a lifetime bargain! I mean, once Ozark punk gets as big as I think it will one of these things could probably finance your retirement!

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Vaginal Discharge-Froth CD

I wasn’t planning on posting anything by Vaginal Discharge here. The folk duo certainly doesn’t qualify as punk in any musical sense. But they were a regular at Ozark punk shows in the mid to late 90’s, and I’ve gotten several requests for their stuff, so I’ll acquiesce. The band was made up of Stan (guitar) and Ryan (vocals and harmonica), and specialized in writing uber-obscene, hilarious songs with memorable titles like “Fat Farm Orgy”, “Pass the Percodan”, and of course the classic “Bring Me the Head of Bono”. (Stan later went on to have some small success as a movie star under the stage name “Denver”.) They released a slew of demo tapes, split CD-Rs, and side projects, along with the full-length Froth CD on Reality Impaired Records out of Joplin in 1998. I think it’s their best release, containing professional recordings of all of their most notable songs. From what I’ve been able to gather, a couple of tracks from the 27-song CD were circulated on Napster back in the day and were widely played in some college dorms and frat houses.

Enjoy

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Ozark Punk Rock Gets Even More Mainstream Coverage

Ben Westhoff has written an article for the Riverfront Times (St. Louis’s corporate-owned “alternative” weekly newspaper) on the Ozark Punk scene, kind of a greatly expanded version of the piece he wrote for Crawdaddy a few months ago. Overall it’s pretty good, although he does focus a bit too much on the negative and sensational elements of the scene rather than its positive points (he opens the article with a lengthy retelling of Born Against’s run-in with the local Nazi crew, certainly not one of the Springfield scene’s finer moments). And what does he mean I’m “reed-thin”? I prefer the term “ethereal”.

Update:

Ben, the author of the above-mentioned piece, also published some material on the Riverfront Times blog that didn’t make the cut for the regular article. The additional stuff tells the story of Roger and Jeanene, who were involved in the bands Encrusted and Initial Detonation, as well as the DIY label/collective Reality Impaired. The blog article also has a link to an in-depth examination of Jeanene’s appearance of Extreme Makeover, with a healthy amount of criticism over her decision.

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Abrasions For The Palate Compilation Cassette


Released in 1994 by Teufelsdrockh Music, a local label, this professionally recorded tape comp. was described in the liner notes as a collection of “Springfield Alternative Rock”. It featured tracks by bands active in town in the early 1990’s, including Brine, Uncle Fester (a pre-Brine four-piece act), the Psychonauts (who played tolerable alt-rock), Devolve (a two-piece drum machine band), and Dunce Cap (a short-lived garage/punk act that included members of the Cheerleaders and Walking Octopus). Stu, a member of Dunce Cap, has a web page here that has an interesting timeline of the Springfield punk rock scene from about 1978 to the mid-1990’s. (There was an all-girl 70’s punk act from Springfield called the Debs? I must have the tapes!)

Uncle Fester-Inbred
Psychonauts-Butterfly
Dunce Cap-Hamburger Job
Devolve-We
Brine-Local Business Hero
Uncle Fester-Sore Thumb
Uncle Fester-Side Show
Dunce Cap-The Tall Years
Psychonauts-Green Grass
Devolve-Helen
Brine-And Now
Psychonauts-Fighter Pilot
Devolve-Going Down

Download

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Trixie And The Merch Girls-DIY, Meatmarket Hotline, and Dead Giraffe CD-Rs

Trixie and the Merch Girls was a side project band done by the three members of Thee Fine Lines, a long-running Springfield garage rock group. They had an eclectic musical style, incorporating elements of punk, pop, and the avant-garde. Trixie’s smooth vocals gave the band a surprisingly pleasing sound, and they were a regular act at the 423 Club during their existence as a band from 1999-2002. The download file includes their fist two recordings, the DIY and Meatmarket Hotline EPs, as well as their only full-length release, 2002’s Dead Giraffe. The band recorded several other CD-R EPs as well as a split 7” with the Jim-Jims, most of which are available on the Wee Rock Records website.

DIY CD-R

1. I Wish...
2. Buy It Grrrl
3. My Cock
4. Four Two Four
5. Piggies
6. Lick It Up


Meatmarket Hotline CD-R

1. I Ain't Goin' Nowhere
2. Ouch!
3. Candy, Snacks, Gas
4. Basement Song
5. Rock & Roll Nightmares
6. It's So Nice
7. Eggs

Dead Giraffe CD-R

1. Gabe, Can We Borrow Your Gun?
2. Worms
3. Pluggie
4. Song for Adam
5. BB Man
6. The Bass Amp has Arrived
7. Little Chinese Man
8. Dead Giraffe
9. Train Song
10. Fine Lines
11. Conan, We Love You
12. Leavin' People Hangin'
13. It's Me

Enjoy.

Monday, December 1, 2008

The Itch

I wrote a while back that I would try to inform the readers of this humble blog not only of the legendary bands of Ozark lore, but of those still rocking away in that isolated backwoods. To that end I would like to draw your attention to The Itch. The three-piece band includes former members of U$MC and Big Bad Chubba, although nobody plays the instruments that they used to. I had the privilege of recently seeing them play in Joplin, and was duly impressed with their rough-hewn rock n’ roll meets punk rock aesthetic. They’ve been around for a couple of years, and have released a two of 7” records along with two full-length CDs. (Their most recent album, “The Courage To Be Hated”, is the first release from an Ozark punk act to be issued on an LP format along with the CD version. Kind of ironic when consider that the golden age of vinyl is long gone, and even CDs are giving way to mp3 downloads.) All of their releases are available from Wee Rock Records, who also host a kick-ass band website with free mp3 tracks from the group and other info. You can check out the band’s MySpace page as well. Better yet, if you live along the I-44 corridor from Tulsa to Springfield, get off your ass and go see these rockin’ beasts in the flesh.

Monday, November 17, 2008

The Forgotten Punk Clubs Of Springfield

Take a trip with me, friends, back to Springfield, Mo in the 1990’s. Being a college town, the city of course boasted a multitude of watering holes offering stale, conventional rock bands playing to equally uninspiring audiences. But under the nose of the unsuspecting town a seething cauldron of punk rock mayhem festered and thrived in a series of under the radar (and for the most part illegal) rock venues. Here’s a description of some of the most notorious spots and photos of their current condition:

The Commercial Street Club

This club was originally run by an old-time punker named Frank, and was later passed on to Dave, the vocalist of Now or Never. Situated in the Commercial Street community building, it operated from circa 1988-1992. Some fairly big acts like Clutch played there. Ironically (or maybe appropriately) the space now serves as a substation for the Springfield Police Department.

The Pink House

The Pink House was the residence of Mitch (now Midge), singer and bass player of Boring Dog Cheese Guard. The place was a mess, an old shack-style house on the west side of town that seemed to constantly be on the verge of falling down. Mitch let various bands use the place as a practice space, recording studio, and occasional venue. I remember one memorable show on a Labor Day (I think it was 1994). Disarm set up their gear and started to play at full volume on the front porch of the house. Not surprisingly, the neighbors called called the police, no doubt frightened by the large group of punks and skinheads congregating in the front yard as well as the sonic chaos that was Disarm. Midge no longer lives there, and it looks as though the house has been pretty heavily renovated, with aluminum siding now covering the striking pink paint job of the old exterior.

Culley’s

Culley’s was a shithole of a bar just off the downtown square that occasionally hosted punk shows. Grout played there quite a bit in the late 1990’s. It eventually became a favorite hangout of the local Nazi skinhead crew. From what I understand, a wall collapsed inside the place a while ago, and the owner felt it wasn’t worth repairing. The place is still shuttered today.

Harper’s Bizarre

Maybe the most infamous club in Springfield’s sordid punk history. It operated out of an old storefront on the corner of Dale and National in north Springfield for about eight months around 1996-1997. The venue had a bad rep as a violent place that was not undeserved-I personally saw several people get hurt there bad enough to warrant emergency room trips. To make matters worse, the band Violent Karma practiced there, and brought their drunken skinhead friends with them. Negativity aside, there were several great shows there, among them bills featuring Naked Aggression, Earth Crisis, and Mustard Plug. The place eventually shut down due to lack of heat (the owner wouldn’t fix the gas pipes). In another bit of irony, the space is occupied today by the Nu-Brew coffeehouse, which is a church/Christian rock venue.

The Looney Bin

Probably the overall best space ever occupied by a Springfield punk club, the Looney Bin was located in a storefront on Commercial street, a couple of blocks down from the old Commercial Street Club. It was a huge space, with a loading dock in back and no neighbors nearby to call the cops. It was open for about a year from around 1998-1999, and had a couple of great shows. Today it’s a used furniture store.

The 423 Club

This club was run by some people from the band Thee Fine Lines, who had also been involved in running the Looney Bin. It was open from about 1999-2001. Its name was a bit of a misnomer, as the address was in fact 425 Walnut St. rather than 423. The downtown club was well run, and got some big acts in as well as serving as a venue for some lefty political meetings. There were plans to try to get a federal loan and turn the place into a youth community center, but they fell through and the space is currently vacant.

Last year, the voters of Springfield approved an ordinance banning persons under 21 from any establishment that makes the majority of its money from liquor sales. That, plus a lack of a viable all-ages venue makes booking shows difficult. Today punk shows in Springfield are few and far between, with many of them happening at Billiard’s, a downtown bar that is willing to rent its back room.

There were also a bunch of fly by night punk-friendly clubs in Joplin (Culture Shock, the Dead Cowboy, the Warehouse, Better Than Bemo’s, etc.) as well as some in far-flung places like Ft. Smith, Fayetteville, and Pittsburg, KS. But somebody who knew those places better than I will have to write a history for them.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Ozark Punk Rock Gets Mainstream Coverage

Music writer Ben Westhoff has written a pretty good intro article on the old Ozark punk scene for the Crawdaddy website. (Crawdaddy, for those of you who don’t know, was one of the first rock n’ roll magazines. It preceded both Rolling Stone and Creem. It now exists only online.) I’m quoted quite liberally in the piece, as are several other persons involved with the scene. This humble blog is also mentioned. Check it out.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

The Aleatoric-To The Celebration Of All Slain Hope CD-R And Forever Yours 7”

As the Ozark punk scene declined in the late 1990’s, kids who might have been punks in previous years went instead to the hardcore and emo scenes. The Aleatoric was the best band to come out of this emocore movement in Springfield at that time, and they developed quite a following during their brief existence. Formed by two former members of the Springfield punk act the Fremen, the Aleatoric was greatly inspired by the chaotic, heavy metalish band The Dillinger Escape Plan. Their shows featured a double-guitar assault coupled with the screeching vocals of their bass player Josh and some great drumming courtesy of Nate. Their fan base was very devoted: rather than slamming, they tended to engage in sort of a free-form dace expression, including the occasional cartwheel. I remember the vibe at their shows was much more mellow and friendly than at the average Springfield punk show at the time. They released the ponderously titled To The Celebration Of All Slain Hope CD-R in 2001. Shortly thereafter they added co-vocalist Eric to the mix and recorded the Forever Yours 7” in 2002. The record was co-released by Fortuna per Letum out of Virginia and Holy Fury Records in France. The band broke up not long after the record’s release.

To The Celebration Of All Slain Hope CD-R

1. Melvin Udal
2. Strapped To A Track
3. Subtle Reversements

Forever Yours 7”

1. Let The Devil Wear Black
2. For My Farewell
3. Subtle Reversements

Enjoy

Thursday, October 16, 2008

The Richards-Demos

Around 1994, a punk band called the Phuckers started playing shows in Joplin. They were somewhat lacking in technical ability, but their vocalist Dan managed to hide this fact with his incredibly energetic stage act. Imagine Jello Biafra on speed. They eventually got a new bass player, changed their name to the Richards, and greatly improved their playing and songwriting. They recorded three demo tapes of varying quality during their existence as a band. The tracks here are taken from two of those, both recorded in 1995. The first five tracks are from a recording originally included on the “A Boy and His 4-Track” tape compilation, while the final two come from the “Lets Go to Michigan” demo tape released by the Joplin-based label Reality Impaired. While music recordings cannot fully capture the intensity of the band, there are some really great songs here: “120 Seconds” is a deft parody of the then-popular MTV program 120 Minutes, “Loretta” describes the late-night antics that often occurred at the Joplin Denny’s, and “Conform or Die” has to me always perfectly encapsulated the desire of young punks to maintain their individuality in the face of the stifling cultural wasteland of small town America. Three of the four members of the band later went on to form U$MC, in which the insanity of the Richards was transformed into a razor-sharp punk maelstrom.

1. 120 Seconds
2. Loretta
3. Conform or Die
4. No More Room
5. Let’s Go to Michigan
6. Cops
7. She’s an Idiot

Enjoy

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Sodomites-Copulation in the Nation CD

The Sodomites were a not-too-serious three-piece punk band out of Joplin. They had an amusing stage act and some seriously raunchy lyrics. I remember booking them at a show in Springfield in the mid-1990’s. They bagged on the other bands, insulted the crowd, and generally seemed to be having a good time. The band provided some good-natured fun as a counterbalance to some of the more serious punk bands around then. They released this professionally recorded and produced CD in 1995 on their own Psycho Motor Disorder label. It definitely has some worthy tracks, from the gonzo insanity of “Adolescent” and “Die” to the surprisingly catchy pop tune “Larry”. Two of the Sodomite’s members later joined up with a former guitar player of the Richards to start another jokey punk act called Vanilla Christ, who had a memorably funny segment in the Ozark Babylon documentary.

1. Flesh Gordon
2. Psycho Girl
3. Spring Valley Shopping Mall
4. I Can’t Fuck Your Wife
5. Freaks
6. Adolescent
7. Scum
8. Larry
9. Good Time Classic
10. Die
11. I Hate What I Do
12. Deborah
13. Good One

Enjoy

Saturday, September 27, 2008

A Tale of Two Cities

The Ozark punk scene was focused in southwest Missouri’s two largest cities: Joplin and Springfield. There was one notable band based in Lebanon, Mo (AWOL 13), and a handful of punk music fans in smaller towns like Neosho and Nevada, but is was Springfield and Joplin that produced the notable bands and hosted the big shows in the 1990’s. It was about an hour’s drive between the two punk strongholds, and pilgrimages were commonly made by both bands and fans to attend shows and parties. However despite their close proximity the scenes in Springfield and Joplin were very different. The scene in Joplin was a lot bigger. In Springfield, a punk show featuring all local bands was lucky to draw 50 people. In Joplin, crowds of 150 punkers or more were not uncommon at local gigs. People in the Joplin scene were also as a whole younger, cleaner living, and more friendly. Kids as young as 12 attended punk shows in Joplin, and you never had to worry about getting beat up (although the backbiting could get a little extreme sometimes). Springfield, on the other hand, had an older scene with lots of drugs, violence, and general unpleasantness. I personally attended several punk shows in Springfield that ended with one or more persons having to go to the emergency room. There was a period when several Joplin-based bands refused to play shows in Springfield. If this all seems to painting Springfield in a bad light, remember I’m a Springfield boy myself, and I loved the place. We punk people in Springfield kind of developed a tough attitude, and in a weird way took pride in being able to take care of ourselves in such a rough scene. I always loved both scenes, with Joplin providing some good, positive fun while Springfield would give you a dose of tough reality. Like a bizarre yin and yang dynamic, Springfield and Joplin complemented each other, and their respective punk subcultures provided balance and inspiration to each other.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Peacekeeper Missile-Demo

Peacekeeper Missile was the brainchild of Elroy, an enigmatic Springfield scene regular of considerable musical talent. The band never played out live so far as I can remember, but existed solely as a recording vehicle for Elroy’s sharp musical compositions and thoughtful lyrics. The songs here were recorded in 1994-1995, and were originally released on the “Boy and His 4-Track” compilation tape. The first five tracks feature Elroy on drums and vocals, along with Dane and Tyler from Brine on guitar and bass respectively. The last song, an unsettling instrumental, has Elroy on drums and guitar and Rob from Disarm on bass.

1. How Can We Fight?
2. Bloodied
3. Immune
4. How Far Are You Willing To Go
5. Another Nail
6. Secure

Enjoy

Saturday, September 6, 2008

Looking for Memories

In addition to posting music created by old Ozark punk bands, I’d also like to start writing some pieces on the history of the scene. The thing I love most about punk is that it’s not just a musical movement, although that part of it is very important. Punk is also very much a subculture, a place for social outcasts to become friends and express their individuality. I’m planning to write a series of pieces on the important venues, events, and people who helped make the scene what it was. If anybody has stories or pictures from the old scene they’d like to share, please send them my way. I’d also like to find out if there’s still a punk scene shaking in southwest Missouri. I moved out of the Ozarks several years ago, and it’s my impression that the punk scene there kind of got swallowed up by the emo and hardcore movements. However, I’d love to be proven wrong.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Disarm-Demo Tape

Disarm was a drunken, sloppy, and very entertaining band that played out around Springfield for about a year in the mid-1990’s. Comprised of two former members of Force Fed Patriots along with drummer Rob and vocalist Liz, they pounded out simplistic and rough mid-tempo punk songs with surprisingly astute lyrics. Rob and Liz were still high school students at the time, and under the dubious tutelage of the older members Dave and Klint, the band played a lot of house shows along with the occasional appearance at an authentic rock venue. This five-song demo was recorded in 1994, and was originally released on the “A Boy and His 4-Track” compilation tape.

1. Fake
2. Power
3. Joe Blow
4. Lonley
5. I Can't Think

Enjoy

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Ozark Babylon-VHS Tape


This is a little-seen, full-length (112 min.) documentary on the Ozark punk scene released in 1998. It contains live footage and interviews with General Zod, Initial Detonation, The Rowskabouts, Satan’s Ice Cream Truck, Brine, U$MC, Vanilla Christ, and Grout. It also has interviews with some of the regular scene people around at the time, as well as random silliness. It’s a great portrait of the Ozark punk subculture of the 1990’s, showing both its high and low points. The interviewees talk about a lot of the issues that plagued the scene then, like backbiting, the lack of local support for the bands, and the Nazi skinhead problem (the infamous Born Against Nazi incident is mentioned at one point). Considering the amount of work that went into the video’s production, little was done to promote it, and only about 30 copies were produced. It’s gratifying to be able to post it here to a worldwide audience.

Update: When Megaupload ceased to exist a few months ago, it took this video file with it. Rather than post it in chunks on Mediafire, I decided to just upload the whole thing to Youtube. You can see the movie here

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

The Giant Penguins-s/t CD-R

The Giant Penguins were a Springfield act that included members of both Fugue and the Fremen. They were around for about a year, playing Ramones-inspired rock mostly at basement shows and the local punk venue of the time, The Looney Bin. They released this (deliberately?) low-fi CD-R on Wee Rock Records, a Springfield label, in 1999. It includes sixteen studio cuts and five live tracks.

1. This Girl Sucks
2. Juvenile Living Dead
3. Commercial Street Kids
4. Denton Affair
5. Surfin’ Samurai
6. Pit Bull
7. If Lee Ving Was My Dad
8. I Want To Believe
9. Black Widow
10. Melissa
11. Garbage Man
12. Spud Boy
13. La Magra
14. Plastic World
15. Speed
16. It’s the End
17. I Want To Believe (live)
18. Black Widow (live)
19. Denton Affair (live)
20. Garbage Man (live)
21. You Hate Me and I Hate You (live)

Download

Thursday, August 7, 2008

Grout-Do You Have 12:38 To Waste? Cassette


First, there was Pisser. Pisser was comprised of a bunch of drunken metalheads from Springfield who put together a six-piece joke punk band. Pisser was either really funny or incredibly boring, depending on how intoxicated both you and the band were. After a while, four of the members of Pisser decided to start a slightly more serious punk band called Grout. Early on, their singer Froggy wore a bald knobbers mask on stage and would throw around a painful-looking chunk of wood, referring to it as his “Grout Stick”. They released a demo tape called “Self-Made Morons” that was not particularly good. After another year or two, the band went through a lineup change, got a kick-ass drummer, dropped the Grout Stick silliness, and settled into a redneck-tinged variety of punk music along the lines of Antiseen or Cocknoose (although I would rate them as better than either of those two bands). They released a professionally recorded tape entitled “Do You Have 12:38 To Waste?” in 1996. It’s included here, along with a bonus track recorded the next year.

1. Fender Bender
2. Government Cheese
3. Idiot’s Life
4. A-Ward
5. No Means Maybe
6. High Class Loser
7. Picture of Health

Bonus Track:
8. Missing Dick


Download

Update:

Grout got back together recently with a different lineup, and is playing shows occasionally in Springfield. Check out their MySpace page here.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

My New #1 Wanted Band: The Royal Nonesuch

These guys aren’t a punk act per se, but damn did they kick much ass. The Royal Nonesuch was a 60’s-style garage act from Springfield that played out in the mid to late 1980’s. (They were the first live band I ever saw. It was 1986-I was twelve. They were opening for Judy Tenuta. I have no explanation.) For those of you not familiar with the band, check out their music video and witness the awesomeness. I’ve got their first 45, the “Something Strange” single (pictured), but am lacking anything else. If anyone has any of their stuff, please share. I probably won’t post it here, but really, really want to hear it. Thanks.

Monday, July 28, 2008

Initial Detonation-s/t 7” and So Selleth the Shepherd, So Buyeth the Flock 7”



Of all of the bands profiled here, Initial Detonation came the closest to achieving some amount of popularity outside of the Ozarks. The band consisted of former members of Encrusted and Satan’s Ice Cream Truck along with Larry on drums and Jeanene providing some scorching co-vocals (guitarist Roger had also played in the original lineup of the LA punk act Total Chaos). They adopted an anarchist-thrash sound that was very popular at the time, and were clearly aiming for bigger and better things than playing local shows. They put out one demo tape, and then released their first record, a self-titled 7”, in 1998. They followed up with another 7” the next year, both records being released on Sensual Underground Ministries out of Tulsa, Oklahoma. Both records received great reviews, particularly from Slug & Lettuce. Maximum Rock ‘n Roll complemented them on their “great crusty style”, which I always found amusing. The band looked ready to become a big act in the anarchist crust scene, but broke up during what sounded like a really hellish two-month nation-wide tour. As far as I know, they’re the only Ozark punk band with their own wikipedia entry.

s/t 7”

Mary Kay Commandos
I am
America the Poisoned
Did You

So Selleth the Shepherd, So Buyeth the Flock 7"

Society of Robots
So Selleth the Shepherd, So Buyeth the Flock
Jesus Slaves
Silver Linings

Download

Update:

One of the former members of I.D. maintains a MySpace page dedicated to the band. You can see it here. And in other and more bizarre news, I recently learned that Jeanene, co-vocalist of the group, was a participant on the now-defunct network TV show “Extreme Makeover”. It looks like the corporate network people paid for a shitload of plastic surgery, or used some black magic ritual to transfer her consciousness into a new body. Check out the photos and decide for yourself.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Brine-Operation Manual and Learning Process 7”s




After Now or Never broke up, Brine took on the mantle of best punk rock act in Springfield, Mo. The band started out as a four piece called Uncle Fester, and released a demo tape in the early 90’s. After their original vocalist quit, the band’s bass player Tyler took over singing, and under their new name the band improved tremendously. Tyler’s distinctive bass playing style meshed well with his brother Dane’s guitar licks and Mike’s tight drumming. They released their first 7” “Operation Manual” around 1996, and it contained some strong playing and songwriting. But it was on their 1998 e.p. “Learning Process” that the band reached their full-throttle potential. Tyler wrote non-rhyming, heavily political lyrics that proved that any piece of writing can be matched to any music so long as you don’t mind pronouncing words in ways they’ve never been pronounced before. Both releases came out on Amendment Records out of Virginia, and while they got good reviews, the band never achieved much popularity outside of the Springfield area. A darn shame, considering how my better they were than most of the lefty punk bands around at the time.

Operation Manual 7"

1. Slacker
2. Fraternity Song
3. Numb
4. Mechanics
5. Velcro Head
6. Thesis Statement No. 1

Learning Process 7"

1. Rehearsing Death
2. Letter to Shaun
3. Every Little Thing Counts
4. Quote Unquote
5. Problem Solving
6. Untitled [Smoking Song]
7. Priority List
8. Faith




Enjoy

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Gabe’s Most Wanted

I’ve done a pretty good job of saving all of the old tapes, records, and CD’s released by Ozark punk bands back in the day. However, there are a few holes in my collection. If you possess any of the recordings listed below, please contact me at the e-mail address listed on the right and I will be eternally grateful.

The Rising Sun-Definitely at the top of my want list. The Rising Sun was an anti-racist skinhead band active in Springfield, Mo in the late 80’s. I know they released at least one demo tape, which was quite good as I remember it.

Force Fed Patriots-FFP was a Springfield band that was around for a couple of years in the early 90’s. They released a demo tape which I seem to have lost somewhere along the line.

Queen City Punks-OK, we’re getting really obscure here. These guys played out around Springfield in the early 70’s with other local acts like Granny’s Bathwater and the Ozark Mountain Daredevils. They were supposed to have sounded kind of like the New York Dolls. I have no idea if they ever recorded anything. (BTW, did you know the New York Dolls played a gig in downtown Springfield in 1973? The opening acts were the Queen City Punks and…Lynyrd Skynyrd!?)

Skullduggery-I’m not completely sure this band even existed. Supposedly they were a punk act comprised of SMSU students and played out in the mid 80’s. They may have released an LP.

Many thanks to anyone who can help!

Saturday, July 5, 2008

U$MC-The Rise and Fall of the Middle Class CD-R

It’s pretty safe to say that this 1999 release by U$MC (Uncle Sam’s Misguided Children) is the best punk album to ever come out of Joplin, MO. Considering some of the other bands around at the time (Encrusted, Initial Detonation, etc.) that’s no small praise. I’ll always remember the night when these guys opened for Blanks 77, the Quincy Punks, and the Dropkick Murphys and blew them all off of the stage. Wee Rock Records released this disc, which unfortunately never got much notice outside of the Ozarks. Included here are the twelve tracks from the CD as well as a red-hot outtake song from the same recording session.

1. Caveat Emptor
2. Hate Junkie
3. Big House
4. Yes Sir
5. Dickhead
6. 88 Hell
7. Corpse Fucking Retro Prick
8. Idoicide
9. Bury My Heart at Jonestown
10. Happy Egos
11. My Room

Bonus Track:

12. Die Heathen Die

Download