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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

School Jerks, Amoebas, Kommie Kilpatrick, Plastic Boyz show review, Lager House, 5/12/10

PJ’s Lager House, May 12th, 2010: School Jerks, Kommie Kilpatrick, Amoebas, and the Plastic Boyz
Garage is generally considered a forerunner to punk rock; it started beforehand, it was made by the same demographic, and both genres are pretty simplistic. However, as punk rock has evolved with multiple subgenres and even more sub-subgenres, garage has become a different genre that can be effectively combined with punk, and being that Detroit has been an important hosting ground for both, it is only fitting that a few bands still fly the flag for both of these genres. Three local bands have done this well, and they shared the stage with a touring old school hardcore band from Toronto.
Opening were the Plastic Boyz from New Baltimore. Granted, I missed about half of the set because of work, but it wasn’t too big of a deal. Unfortunately they were not quite as spot on as they usually are. Singer Kelly was a tad bit inebriated and forgot some of the words, which led to everyone else messing up a bit and it didn’t quite mesh together well as a sound. However, the Plastic Boyz are still a serious hardcore force for Detroit punk rock if they keep their heads molded on straight.
Next were the Amoebas. Although they only have one 7” for sale, these guys have several songs written and laid out. It is also noteworthy to say that their 7” has the two songs that would fit right in on the radio after the Damned and before the Dead Boys in 1977. Their set is a strong garage sound with punk influences. It is very different from other garage and punk music, and although I can’t stretch it far enough to utter the word ‘unique’, it is a gem, a very rare, very valuable discovery nonetheless. The only complaint I can muster is that they are from Grand Rapids and not Detroit, which means fewer shows here.
Then, the School Jerks came onstage and truly shined. The guitar work is crazy, the drumming is manic, and the singer is a demented, Canadian hellspawn with a snotty, high-pitched voice. This band is hardcore punk incarnate. Let me restate this more clearly: This band is what hardcore punk became notable and beloved for, and they are probably one of the best bands to come out of this genre in the last decade. There are, of course, a few non-punk influences, but this is as 80s hardcore as you can possibly get. Buy their vinyl, spray paint their name on walls, ride a skateboard with their name written on it, do anything to support this band that involves any commitment short of quitting your job. That’s how good they are.
Last up was Kommie Kilpatrick, a humorously named garage out of Wayne State University in downtown Detroit. With their emphasis on short songs about city life, partying and sex, there isn’t a whole lot not to like. While their set was played in front of a handful of people and technical difficulties marred some of the guitar work, the band still did reasonably well. Kommie Kilpatrick has a unique sense of humor they inject into their songs and it is coupled well with simplistic garage punk in the vein of a cleaner version of Teengenerate.
This show was a sweet release from a boring day at work. Investigate the Toronto punk scene; it is really taking off, and with Molested Youth at its side, the School Jerks are the heads of this movement. Take a road trip and check it out!
-Aunty Social

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