Monday, July 6, 2009

Bikers without Bikes

Growing up in the late 70s & 80s meant alot of media exposure to "Punks as Villains", especially in English media or in movies about the eventual & dark future. Road Warrior is the best example of this. The Cartoon Punk: mohawk or charged hair, combat boots, leather jacket covered with paint & studs & spikes, bullet belt, bondage gear, torn jeans, safety pin through the eye etc, was really just the next stage of the Greaser, with just a crazier version of that type of get up. Bikers without bikes. This style is so visually powerful that it will undoubtedly last forever. There will be kids decked out in all this stuff when we're living on space stations in the Quasar 5 Galaxy. Seriously. BUT, what's kind of amusing to me is that Punk spread through a few different vehicles, & each vehicle has its own kind of adherent. One of the main ones was the written word in Maximum Rockn'Roll, which being a voice specific to the San Francisco Bay Area & all of that place's peculiarities, delivered a certain message & catered to a certain kind of uptight "progressive" record nerd that to me, is contrary to that true Rock & Roll spirit that is found in things like leather pants, razor blades, short skirts & fire. All of that rigid tribalism was really part of the national character in the 80s, but it has all pretty much disintegrated. Anyhow, the first generation of Punks was totally freaked out by this next stage of Punk: the Punk Rocker, the Street Punk, the Cartoon Punk. Thuggish, crazed & free, the working class 2nd wave Punk was a nightmare to the original art school scene. Stan from @//Political tried hard to convince me that Vyvyan from the Young Ones was not a Punk, but was a Metal Head. Gone were the artistic pretenses, obvious creativity was thrown out for a canon of symbolic concepts relating to power, fear, sex & aggression. Out went the connection with the gay scene & in came raging homo-eroticism. In came the uniform, in came tradition, in came codified behavior, all things that original Punk seemed to be against. The revolutionaries & their existencialist crises were swept away by the crazed louts who saw in the freedom of Punk a new opportunity to misbehave. And God bless them for it.
One Way System - Jerusalem & No Return

Broken Bones - Decapitated

GBH - Generals

The Exploited - Dogs of War

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