Wednesday, December 14, 2011
Band profile: Swine Flu
The band started not in its current location of Detroit, but all the way on the West Coast in the Bay Area city of Oakland, California. It started with bassist James “Juvie” Palmer and Dan “DMT” Mahler. The band made their way around the Bay Area, even befriending famous 80s hardcore band Verbal Abuse, who also reside in that area. Some shows, a rough demo, and a year or two later, both the founding members moved back to their metropolitan hometown area of Detroit. In short order, Swine Flu picked up drummer Phil Warren and guitarist Brian Weisserman. Here is the stable line-up that would sustain the band for six months to a year. In June-July 2011, they added female vocalist Emma Pestilencia to their line-up, which where they currently stand.
The band, while having multiple songs written and pretty much perfected (including Abortion Survivor, All Cops Have AIDS, Nuclear Holocaust, amongst others), has only an old demo with a former line-up recorded. The band, though very tight musically (when sober and relatively drug-free), is in need of a push for merchandise, imagery, and higher-quality recordings. However, on the plus side, the band has played many shows in the Detroit area, playing with bands such as State, Seeker, the Ratfinks, and others, primarily local bands. This is a band who has put their time into the local scene, and they deserve the recognition that comes with having imagery and good merchandise.
This band’s sound is a fusion sound, not exactly able to be pinpointed into one genre other than punk rock. It has dual vocals (usually an anarcho punk/ crust approach), extraordinarily high-octane pace guitar (usually a fastcore/ thrashcore technique), and the songs are short, sweet, and cynical, (a standard hardcore approach). Somehow, metal influence seeps its way in; there are a few leads, a few breakdowns, and recognizable riffs. Whether one calls it crossover thrash on PCP or Drunk & On Drugs thrash punk, it’s the Swine Flu sound.
The band is poised to take off in a Hellmouth-like way; they have paid their dues, they have the ability to rage a show, and they know exactly what they want to sound like. They are also trying to add a second guitarist to see if it can complement their sound; despite this mild turmoil from a change-up, the hard part of starting a band and getting a band going is over. It’s time for Swine Flu to smell the bacon, grind the gears, and fly into action!