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


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.