Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Where Did the Posi Go?

After the happenings at this weekend's favored West Cost fest, it's forcing me to question why we are supporting/ allowing things like this to happen? When was it that our punk family tree was infected with testosterone fueled violence?

For those who don't know, this past weekend in Santa Barbera, CA, the Sound and Fury hardcore festival played out. The line up included bands such as Sick of it All, Cold World, The Rival Mob, Bane, as well as many other Richmond natives (congrats BTW, boys). On Sunday night, in the middle of a set, someone rolled in through the crowd on a motorcycle putting many in harms way and wrecking tables of the touring bands' merch (aka band's meal tickets). This situation escalated quickly as multiple brawls broke out simultaneously in response. As reported, many of the patrons found the disturbance thrilling and thought it a triumphant end to the fun packed weekend.

Are you kidding me? When did riots become cool? What has created such a violent scene? Is it the context of the songs? Is it a tough-guy complex? Is there something to prove? And if so, who are you trying to prove it to?

I doubt it.

With popular hardcore bands out there like Pulling Teeth who sing about social change, such as combating homophobia, or other bands like Earth Crisis, promoting veganism and making others aware of animal cruelty, why is the scene still so ignorant in common sense? It makes me mad to no end that I know that when I return home from a hardcore show I will be a few bruises richer. That being said, I'm not a stage diver, not a dancer, in fact, no where near the pit; i'm just a 5'2" blond girl who happens to get a thrill from heavy bass riffs, fast, throaty vocals, and have been known to silently head bang to a breakdown or two. For others, broken noses fingers, and black eyes? - Just another day at the office.

Having friends in touring bands, they are always shocked to report that other scenes ( whether it be in a different state or attendance at a more mixed genera show) are so much more respectful, supportive and not nearly as coldly aggressive.

During the height of their hardcore/punk scene in the 1980s, DC was churning out bands such as Bad Brains, Fugazi, Dag Nasty, and Minor Threat. The enthusiasm that this scene exuded to the rest of the country was astounding. One of the first, and most influential punk movements of the century, and these bands are still holding strong and staying current. The scene then was far more peaceful then the imagines we picture when someone says 'hardcore show' now. So much respect.

It's frustrating because the impression modern punk and hardcore gives people turns even some of the most faithful DIYers and punk enthusiasts off. Many old school patrons have stopped going to shows because they don't want to deal with the abuse and find militant crews unnecessarily proud, and rather annoying.

Call me a hippie, I don't care, but having come from the DC area to a more macho scene the difference is disappointing. It's safe to say that I would be much more apart of the music scene if things were different. The mentality of the scene isn't enough to turn me off though, and I will not stop showing my support for many of the talented bands out nowadays, I just want to understand so I can do what I can. There is no reason that we can't spur a social change within our scene. PMA and posi are all apart of my life, and it's a shame that our scene is losing integrity because of a few bad seeds.

Sound and Fury Articles can be found here:

And here:


There is no doubt that it is officially Summer time. Richmond's infamous heat and humidity have struck us with record-breaking highs, making the mean temperature in my house 88+ degrees.

I don't do heat.

Hearing my somewhat defeated tone, my Dad texted me one morning, "I'll be in Richmond at 2pm with 2 new a/c units, where will you be?" Amazing. If there was a father of the year award, he would win it, hands down. By the time I got home, the house was cool and he had cleaned my apartment. With all that is going on, it was so nice to be taken care of for a change.

So now, my outlook on the rest of Summer is much more positive.

I have the best family ever.

P.S. I am going to have to change my motto, no longer a Successful, *Single*, Sober girl. Just Successful and Sober ;)