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Notes From the Underground

Schlong Time Gone:
Berkeley threesome--er, duo--barely makes the bill

I GOT TO THE BASEMENT early on Saturday, all excited for a rare performance by Berkeley's Schlong, only to find they had "most likely" canceled. Fortunately, the rest of the lineup promised some sweet surprises as worthy incentive to stick around. An unannounced Soda Pop Fuck You opened with a sweetly energetic and much-matured set. With new singer Cris Armijo, the band finally has achieved the sound I think they're going for. Toward the end of their set, they followed their angry, upbeat song "Fuck You" with a solid cover of Minor Threat's "I Don't Wanna Hear It," which had the skankers singing to the chorus. Next was another surprise, Taft Hotel from San Luis Obispo. This four-piece threw image out the window, appealing to the serious musicians in the crowd with the interplay of two basses. Dramatic stops and starts interspersed with delicate, intentionally repetitive guitar solos and sparse screaming made for a set of well-crafted noise.

Coathang'r Kids drove all the way from Oxnard, and their attitude brought smiles to the audience. They played "tard" fun-punk, and the guitarist and bassist (both wearing Depends adult diapers) switched instruments halfway through the set. They opened up with "Punk Shop" and proceeded through one short, silly outburst after another. Linda Traxler's high vocals, especially on the song "Outta Line," reminded me in a pleasant way of the X-Ray Specs.

Two-thirds of Schlong managed to show up and sneak in after the Kids' set, and to my horror I spent that entire 20 minutes arguing with someone outside. Rumor has it, though, that the trio was great even as a duo. Hopefully, they'll return when their singer doesn't have better things to do.

The What-Nots once again found themselves topping the bill and they celebrated singer Eden's birthday with a piñata and a set that left audience members entranced by the power of her sweet voice and integrity of the songwriting. The more confident they get, the more talent seeps through the cracks, making this local gem impossible to overlook. My question is, where's a record-label scout when you need one?
Arwen Curry

Rebellion Available Here

Back from tour, local heroes Good Riddance have finally released their second full-length record, A Comprehensive Guide to Moderne Rebellion, and they're throwing a CD release show on Friday, supported by Fury 66, Final Conflict (Los Angeles), Riff Raff, and L.I.F.E. (don't miss the opener!). For you collectors and curmudgeons who still refuse to buy CDs, I understand they've got a limited number of copies on red vinyl. The all-ages bash is at the Portuguese Hall (216 Evergreen St., near Harvey West) at 8pm ($6 in advance, $7 at the door).


On Saturday, Woodpecker, Q-Factor and .Staple. are playing in town, possibly at the Basement (check for fliers). On Sunday, the What-Nots play with the Muggs at Emi's (21-plus, 10pm).
Michael Mechanic

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From the June 13-19, 1996 issue of Metro Santa Cruz

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