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Notes From the Underground
By Arwen Curry

Glory Haze:
Local acts released into the wild

PERSISTENCE IS QUITE A VIRTUE FOR LOCAL BANDS--this is effectively proven by the number of releases recently either in rumor or flesh. The What Nots' CD, expected some time last month, has yet to materialize, but ultimately the tension can only work in the band's favor. A recent announcement from Bad Monkey Records brags of the impending release of a second Soda Pop Fuck You CD as well as a split by Power and Wealth Need Slaves and Political Silence (the unheard music of SC--besides a short run at the Asti last spring, they have been virtually invisible locally) and a Wet-Nap seven-inch. The Gorehounds, who has made its presence known, however subtly, for years, is also expecting the release of a CD in the near future.

While no MTV scouts seem to be prowling our streets for the Next Big Thing (though Slow Gherkin gets my vote for Most Likely to Succeed, if it ever happens), it seems if you stick around long enough and work at it, of course, the results come. Dilligaf, whose members have played in various local acts like One Ton Tow Ball and Writhe for something like 10 years, released its first CD recently on Hard 8 Records, a small label interested in promoting "creative, hard-edged" music. The CD, which is currently available in local stores, is a bit short (eight songs) but faithful to the band's sound, which ranges from metal cheese to mid-'80s-tinged skate-core.

The formula, conscientiously recorded as usual by Bart Thurber at House of Faith, recalls the paths of certain early punk bands (see Reagan Youth, Social Unrest) when the initial energy of its first releases gradually lapsed into a slower, sadder and more melodic sound. In other words, where you would have had a breathless and pissed quick-change, you hear instead a crisp metal guitar breakdown. For those of us who still occasionally appreciate Reagan Youth's Volume Two in secrecy, avoiding the unflattering and unnecessary comparison with Volume One, the tunes are quite decent. Sporadic Black Flag-y guitar twists, especially in "Fail Again," betray an obvious influence that buys the band a few years in purgatory overlooking the tortures of metalhead hell. As far as theme music for dropping in on the ramp goes, this local release gets a thumbs-up.

Upcoming

On Saturday, Dilligaf plays with Herbert for SCAB skateboards at Rancho Del Mar Plaza in Aptos (7pm, $4, all ages). Also, Slow Gherkin, Monkey, the Blast Bandits, and S.T.U.B. play at Pacific Grove High School (6pm, $6, all ages). On Monday, Japan's Hellchild and Corrupted play with Disassociate, Capitalist Casualties and Noothgrush at the Cactus Club in San Jose (9pm, $3, all ages). On Wednesday, Mocket, Love is Laughter, Starlight Desperation, Violence Jack and the Lowdowns play at the Vets Hall (6pm, $5, all ages).

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From the Oct. 16-22, 1997 issue of Metro Santa Cruz.

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