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It's hard to believe that 7 AZPunk comps have come and gone already. It seems like eons ago when Chris, Bryan and I were frantically trying to gather as much new local punk rock as we could, and cram it all into volume 1. One thing is for sure, AZPunk's collection of compilation albums documents a solid diverse collection of the growth (or diminishment - whichever way you tip on the full/empty meter) of local punk rock in Arizona over the last eight years, and our latest evolved installment, the Personality Disorder 12", although is a complete divorce from the standard template of the old "AZPunk comps" of lore, it doesn't stray from it's delivery of the awesome sounds of some of the bands tearing up pubs and house shows around the Valley today. On Tuesday, June 8th, we celebrated the release of our first record with the help of some of our good friends.
Naturally, being 1/4 of the guys involved with putting the record together, you could call me biased. That's fair. But being one of the dudes that is lucky enough to work with and get to know the awesome people in the bands that we've been involved with for these comps over the years, I can tell you for certain that these compilation albums we continue to pump out year after year aren't about AZPunk.com at all. They're about the bands that work tirelessly to do what they love to do. Bands that aren't here to be rock stars. Bands that, regardless of if their Faygo truck shows up or not, will still play the show. Everyone has their own opinions on the bands and songs we fill on these albums, both good and bad. But really, what else would one expect out of a compilation album? The AZPunk comps are not produced to heal the world's view of local music, nor dictate a political stance on what is and isn't considered "punk rock". What the comps are here to do is present a collection of current bands that are willing to work with us, and donate their music and time, so that you can make up your own mind about who you're gonna go catch at a gig, and who you'd sooner pass on by. These comps are about how Arizona punk rockers have fun. And after last Tuesday's Personality Disorder 12" release party, it's apparent that the fun hasn't stopped.
Our good friend Wesley Allen from The Plainfield Butchers and Erratic! Radio, invited us to host our release party on the air at his usual Tuesday nights at The Rogue in Scottsdale. A Tuesday? Yes, Tuesday. Apparently it's the new Thursday, because the turnout was a hell of alot better than I was expecting. Good ol' Bryan showed up to lend his killer lens and trigger finger to take some shots for us. The original lineup included The Impossible Ones, but to to their resent demise, Casket Life was cool enough to pop on at the last minute. Regardless, it was awesome to see Neil Impossible there showing his support. Another great band that wasn't able to make the lineup on the date we planned was The Father Figures, but seeing the smiling, attractive faces of bass player Tom "Phnart" Reardon and "drummer extraordinaire", Bobby Lerma, made my little heart go pitter patter.
The night kicked off with heavy hitters, and good compadres of ours, Casket Life. Always a great bunch of guys to hang with, even better to check out live. Fresh off their recent CD release, Building A Better Disaster, Casket Life wasted no time jumping right into business. I was stoked these guys had the time to hop on the show at the last minute. If you haven't heard the new album, jump over to InterPunk.com and pick it up. It's their best album yet, in my opinion.
After a little lineup switcharoo because Chad and David were out past their beddy-bye time, Cagematch hit the stage next. Now, as far as I'm concerned - and for the record, outside of the Star Wars universe, I've never actually claimed to know anything in life - but these guys personify the cutting edge of "plaguecore" punk music. This is a sub-genre that I just made up sitting here right now. It's a convergence of demon spells, crippling dark riffs, hopelessness, and the hardcore musical composition that when applied to the brain, causes internal hemorrhaging and sudden fits of head thrashing. Sounds scary, I know, but trust me, you gotta try it. Hands down, my most favorite band right now. Hard as FUCK!
This was the first time I had a chance to see Said Gun live, and I gotta say, they exceeded my expectations. Recently, they released their demo album SouthWestern Songs of the Arizonas to download for free on their BandCamp page, and although it sounds great, it doesn't compare to their live energy. Guitar player, Cory Rial, was a super trooper at the show, rocking the strings for both Cagematch and Said Gun that night. Another newer band over the years that you should make a point in catching live.
One of the more surprising artists you will find on this new comp, and one in which we were lucky enough to have play our release shows for the first time, Jason DeVore of Authority Zero played a solo acoustic set. A complete separation from anything you may be thinking, DeVore brought a rabid style of country acoustic punk to the stage, and from the sound of applause after he finished, caught every one in the room off guard. Personally, When we were orgainizing the music for the comp, I was kinda surprised when Nate brought DeVore's song Crooked Path to the table, but after the whole thing was done, and listening to the comp over and over for the past 3 months, I'm really glad he was included. Crooked Path is one of my favorite songs on the comp.
And as always, saving the best for last, the lo-fi rock n' roll of The Plainfield Butchers closed out the night on an awesome note. Lead singer/guitarist Wesley Allen was pulling double duty playing in his band, and hosting his weekly radio show, Erratic! Radio on KWSS 106.7 FM. It was pretty cool having a remote radio show broadcasting live during the show, unfortunately, Wes informed me that they don't archive the remote shows, so if you didn't catch the live show, I guess you're S.O.L. Wah wah :/. Anyway, they still kick ass live, and their lo-fi brand of rock sounds perfect on the album. I was thrown for a loop when I noticed that their new drummer, Justin, just so happened to be a friend of mine, and the drummer for the little Jazz band my friends and I organized for my wedding. He's a fantastic drummer, and it was cool to see him stretching his skills into a different style of music than the stuff I had been used to hearing him play before. I don't think the sounds of the night could have gone out any better than having the Butchers close out another memorable AZPunk comp release show.
Overall, the night could not only be considered a success, but probably the most fun I've had going out on a Tuesday night in a long time. It was great to see everyone who came out, and we appreciate the continuous support from the friends we've been lucky enough to gather over the years. Huge thanks to everyone involved and who came out to show their support. Before the night was over, Nate pulled me aside and told me that he's already getting hit up from bands who want to be on "the next AZPunk comp", even though at this stage, there's no real plan on making a new one. I guess it's up to you guys to tell us. Jump over to ShopAZPunk.com and buy a copy of AZPunk's Personality Disorder 12" before the quickly diminishing 250 copies are gone forever!
The latest Fall Dates for Rhythm Dragons Billy 3.0 Tour (Part 2) that starts October 1st.
Anarchy 520 Radio Show 9pm @ See Details • All Ages • Free Show! with 1. -the Clash – Know Your Rights, 2. The Slits- Not Anyone’s Little Girl, 3. Death- Politicians In My Eyes, 4. The Hives- Supply And Demand, 5. Rachid Taha- Rock El Casbah, 6. The Vaccines- Teenage Icon, 7. Iggy And The Stooges- I Got A Right, 8. Fishbone- Fight The Youth, 9. Pat
Latest album "Billy 3.0"by Rhythm Dragons plus all the past catalog of original songs by Phoenix,Arizona's own Rockabilly trio "the RHYTHM DRAGONS" - check it out at : https://www.itunes.apple.com/us/album/billy-3.0/id814571587
Check out the Latest album "Billy 3.0"by Rhythm Dragons plus all the past catalog of original songs by Phoenix,Arizona's own Rockabilly trio "the RHYTHM DRAGONS" - check it out at : https://itunes.apple.com/us/album/billy-3.0/id814571587
Come see G.C.O.M.