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Detroit, Michigan, United States
I'm a punk rock guru from Detroit. Part skinhead, part crusty, part metalhead, part hardcore kid, part party kid, 100% punk rocker.
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Thursday, August 12, 2010

Explicit Bombers, Dick Hickey, Aggro or Die! show review, Premier Theatre, 5/21/10

Premier Concert Theatre, May 21st, 2010
Punk rock has evolved in an interesting way since the late 70s and early 80s. Instead of the scene being populated with angry young kids, some barely old enough to drive, the punk rock scene in Michigan stands primarily with guys in their 30s and sometimes 40s. This isn’t a bad thing, but it sure doesn’t speak well of my generation. It does give punk rock a bit of credibility, or durability, as the case may be. There are a few younger bands in the Michigan punk scene, and I saw one of them tonight.
The Explicit Bombers are the youngest such band I have seen as of late. A three-piece from the rural hell known as Howell, these guys play, hmm, just punk rock. It’s not hardcore, but it’s fast. It’s not pop punk, but there are some catchy chorus chants in their music. It’s not really ’77 style, because the music is modern. It’s just punk rock, without any (forgive the pun) explicit subgenres. Blasting through a good half hour set, these guys kept it pretty short and avoided stagnancy. This band has a whole lot of potential if they can get their sound heard, get a bit of a reputation, and jump on some bigger shows. I think that the potential for this band definitely outweighs what I saw; what I did see was good, and hopefully what I will see will be even better.
Next was Dick Hickey, bringing with them only a rapist van and their unique, snotty, reckneck-core persona. They have an upcoming EP that’s almost ready for sale, and despite the recent addition of these songs in their set list, they have nearly a full-length of brand new songs that they have performed, including ‘Destroying the World’ and the hit single ‘Jamie’s Song’, written for their former drummer. Despite being relatively young and dirt poor, Dick Hickey has established themselves as a bona-fide force for Michigan punk rock. They have truly pissed on the weeping willow in Punk Rock Forest. Look for Dick Hickey wherever bipolar nymphomaniacs and ironic humor are commonly found.
Last up was Aggro or Die!, another band that can only be described as punk rock, albeit for very different reasons. They have so many influences that the only pervasive element is skateboarding and J. Voltage’s unnecessary hootin’ and hollerin’. Actually, it’s very necessary, because the most notable thing about Aggro or Die! is the strong musicianship; guitarist Damien belted out more than his fair share of leads, drummer Eddie could be in a death metal band, and Beardsley and Bob are great at keeping rhythm (a highly underrated skill). In short, they can all play very well. Focusing mainly on nostalgia such as old video games, skateboarding, and inside jokes, Aggro or Die! are probably THE band you’d hear someone listening to skating down a bustling metropolis filled with snobby hipsters, tight-assed rich white businessmen, paranoid cops, and occasionally, your friendly neighborhood fellow skateboarder. These guys speak about keeping it (punk rock) a threat, and do they do that? They sure do. People are still disgusted at skateboarders, graffiti, a life not including a happy marriage with children, and open-mindedness. Punk rock is still a threat, so let’s keep it that way!
This show was rather short, but the quality was very high, even worth the staggering admission price. $8 for a local show is a bit much, especially in this kind of location. Start the basement and house show circuit again! DIY or die!
-Aunty Social

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