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Notes From the Underground

[whitespace] Saturday Night's All Right:
Good shows make the night; zine world loses one of its best

MANY KIDS expressed dissatisfaction with their inability to "make the form of ... water" like the Wonder Twins last Saturday when they couldn't rematerialize in several places at once. Fury 66 finally celebrated the release of its new CD, For Lack of a Better Word, at the Vets Hall, and gauging from the size of the crowd, it was about time the band gave the kids a healthy medicinal dose of righteous pit-friendly punk.

You know, Fury should find a way to put some girls onstage--find a rockin' sister-band or something. Punk bands with women in them aren't that easy to come by, I know, but it might do wonders for the morale of the younger girls in the audience who usually drift to the fringes of the pit. Anyway, if you didn't make the show, look for the CD around town soon.

At another show, the metal band Ominum was ready for a house-fest where, incidentally enough, it set up equipment and didn't get to play. Instead, a number of projects-in-the-works, some still nameless, tested the live-show waters.

For contributors to SF-based Maximumrocknroll, controversial zine-of-all-punk-rock-zines, it's business as usual this week, after explicit instructions from founder and editor Tim Yohannon, who died this weekend after several years battling cancer. As far as I know, he never censored anyone for not agreeing with him--so here's to you, Tim Yo, for giving flesh to a beautiful idea for so long.

Good Ol' Boys

A punk show of epic proportions shook things up at downtown's Vets Hall on March 29. I heard Riff Raff stole the show from the U.S. Bombs a few weeks back, and it practically did the same thing to the other bands at this show. The band cranked up its slick and meaty guitars, sprinkled in neat Misfits-esque vocal touches, and catapulted the kids into punk-rock delirium.

Odie's seven-inch vertical rock-star guitar leaps were epic. Paul, on bass, earns all-around-cool-guy honors for putting a couple of testosterone blobs roaming outside the pit in their place.

Youth Brigade holds a fine, melodic punk tune together even if it's now technically a Middle-Aged Brigade. "Street Dominator" made the pit go stir crazy. Youth Brigade still offers some inspiring messages for punks of all ages, plus the guys invited the audience to join them on the mic.

After a caffeine fix outside, I tragically discovered there were no in-and-out privileges--why did they stamp my hand in the first place then? Luckily, I weaseled my way back in to see the Swingin' Utters after bribing security with some Chumbawamba trading cards. Johnny's still got that gruff, workin'-class vocal shtick that I love down pat. The Utters sizzled through "Tied Down, Spit On" and "Stooge," but the bulk of their set didn't pack the usual wallop. I still bought their "Teenage Genocide" shirt, though, to fulfill my legacy as a walking hypocrisy.

Matt Koumaras

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From the April 9-15, 1998 issue of Metro Santa Cruz.

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