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Notes From the Underground

Zine Update:
A couple more rags out there produced for and by local kidz are the local music scene's latest deliveries

REMEMBER S&EM PRODUCTIONS? It's a little comic zine put out by Santa Cruz Mountains dwellers Emerson Murray and Chris Psaros, which the pair has since named Timebomb Theatre. While many people put out one or two zines and call it quits, Murray and Psaros have been pretty prolific, doing four issues with help from other contributors, plus a comic love story called Venus and Dick Dragon: Kung Fu Detective.

The comics are improving, although they are still obsessed with Ninjas. The comic artists have continued with their gallery of failed superheroes, like "Gore," who is entirely composed of human entrails. Personally, I can hardly wait to find out what happens to the two cool girls who are accosted by a demonic clown in Murray's The Clown Cult of Beer Valley in TT #4. The comic ends quite cruelly with "to be continued." (Damn kids are getting too many ideas from the X-Files people.) Get Timebomb Theater by sending $1--or "a nice letter"--to S&Em Productions, Box 851, Felton, 95018.

A new zine called SKAMM is put out by five local girls. It's amateurish, to be sure, but also funny, like the girls' tale of their conspiracy to steal Archie from Foster's Freeze. (Their elaborate crime is foiled when they realize what they really stole was Jughead, and their moms makes them return it anyway.) The SKAMM girls also have local reviews and an interview with Soda Pop Fuck You's drummer Whit, in which they ask things like: "If you hit a cat, would you stop?" (which is really not a bad question), and "Do you believe moshing is a form of chaotic self-expressive dancing or a form of arseholes that have no better urges in them than to hit people?"

The indignant young female perspective is pretty refreshing in this male-dominated music scene, if you leave out the one page of self-pitying prose. (Life gets much better kid, believe me.) You can contact SKAMM at [email protected] or 629 Trevethan Ave., Santa Cruz 95065.

Spleen-A-Zine's "Let's Hear It For Capitalism" issue came out recently. These kids put out a publication full of reviews, obscure clippings and photos, humorous cynicism, non sequiturs, politics and political incorrectness (it's sort of universally disrespectful). I disagree with some of their views, but these kids have a damn good point when they rave about the commoditization of "punk" music and corresponding merchandising boom that belies the true meaning and spirit of "punk." I think punk is about building communities from within and making things happen yourself, not about ignoring musical innovation and selling tons of stuff in the meantime. Uh, and speaking of merchandise, you can get this local rag for $2 or so from Spleen-A-Zine, c/o Adam Beebe, 500 Marion Ave., Ben Lomond, 95005.


On Friday, Red #9, Hairy Italians, Ron Bauer Experience and a couple other bands play at the Los Gatos Teen Center behind LG High on New York Ave. (all ages, 7pm, $5). An underground Christmas play called Ho Ho Holy Shit! happens on Saturday. Look for fliers.
Michael Mechanic

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From the December 19-25, 1996 issue of Metro Santa Cruz

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