June 29th, 2012 by Ed
HAND IN HAND: RAY BARBEE
June 28th, 2012 by Larry
Legendary skateboarder, Ray Barbee gives a history lesson on how he was both introduced to, and fell in love with skateboarding and the guitar.
MATT PINCUS OF JUDGE – PART II
June 27th, 2012 by Tim
If you missed the first part to this interview, check it out here: Matt Pincus of Judge – Part I
Sammy and I were best friends in 7th grade, and spent a lot of time together then. But he started taking music more seriously, even at a young age. We used to mess around on guitar and drums in his dad’s moving and storage warehouse downtown, playing covers of punk songs. However, I think it was pretty clear to everyone that Sammy was something special and was going to have a future playing music that was beyond the rest of us. Pretty quickly, he joined a band called Noize Police which had some real shows going. That led to Side By Side and the rest was history for him.
We stayed close but, while Sammy was developing in music, I really took the punk thing to the next level. was a really fucked up kid when I was about 10 – 13 years old. I was arrested a couple of times, got kicked out of two schools, was smoking dope and in trouble with drugs, ran away from my house and finally got sent to reform school, which was a difficult place for kids with issues. That was a dark time. I got the shit kicked out of me a few times and, by the time I got out (before ninth grade) I was ready to turn my life around.
I honestly credit hardcore for straightening me out. Sammy introduced me to straight edge and that was the vine swing I needed to get things on the right track and channel my pissed off energy. I have a lot to thank him for. I started going to shows when I was about 14. You had to be 16 to get into CB’s for hardcore matinees. So, I was too young. I seem to remember that a bunch of us went to a place called Playland in Times Square and got super cheap fake IDs for a couple of bucks that said we were 16. They just said ID CARD across the top, but CBs didn’t care. Probably the least sinister use of fake IDs there could be anyway. I saw Side By Side at CBs when I must have been 14. That was a memorable show as I think it may have been my first and I stood on stage. It blew my mind.
Hardcore was like my sports in high school. I went to shows, then played shows, on weekends, during all my vacations from school, and toured in the summer. I became straight edge when I was 15, and that got me clean and gave me a sense of purpose and a community.
Shows were scary back in those days. I have an indelible memory of Jason Krakdown (from Krakdown) dominating the pit by swinging a bike lock round and round over his head, I think at a Sick Of It All matinee. I wasn’t a tough guy. That scared the shit out of me.
Another memorable show was Bad Brains at the Ritz on 11th Street. I seem to remember they were on a bill with Fishbone. I was probably 15 and it just blew my mind. I had never seen people do the things those guys were doing. Dr. Know ripping. HR doing a full flip on stage. Just nuts. A kid stage dived off the balcony onto the crowd. It’s impossible to imagine that happening these days.
And then there was the Anthrax. That was a place of wonder for me, though I do remember breaking my arm there at a YOT show.
I still have my old first pressing hardcore records. I bought YOT Can’t Close My Eyes at Some Records. I still remember thumbing through the bins, trying to decide what to buy. I still have the Unity, Underdog, Sick Of It All, GB, and Bold 7 inches in the collection, not to mention Salad Days, along with some epic demo tapes (Beyond demo comes to mind).
It was a special time.
I’m not sure I ever felt like I fit in when I was a kid, no matter what context…and I’m not sure the NYHC scene was any different in that respect.
My life pattern and upbringing was different than the other guys in the scene, but I think a couple of things helped and made it work for me. First, I worked really hard at playing music. I knew the songs, and I showed up early for shows. I was way into it. I also respected the other guys in the band and what they had done. Mike Judge and I were way different, but he and I did some early morning shifts on tour and connected in our own way. Porcell was someone everyone looked up to and I was no exception. I think they got that I felt lucky to be where I was.
Second, I think I had earned some respect because I had taken the punk thing super far. Despite my background, I didn’t give a fuck and wasn’t trying to play it safe. I think some people knew a little bit of that and maybe went a bit easier on me because of it.
Did I feel like I was in the same struggle with all of those guys? Probably not. Attached is a pic of a bunch of the hardcore cats hanging out at my folks’ apartment. Porcell, Wally, Luke, Alex Brown, etc. were there. That was quite a night. I remember Ray Beez from Warzone (he’s in the upper right wearing a racoon skin cap) that night calling my dad Mr. Drummond. To his face. So, it was a bit weird.
But I really connected with what the scene was all about in my own way and it made sense.
OFFICIAL 411VM ARCHIVE COMING IN JULY
June 27th, 2012 by Larry
In 1993, long before the Internet made the world available with a few clicks of a mouse, skateboarding got its first taste of regular skate footage in the form of 411 Video Magazine. Co-founded by Josh Friedberg with some help from Steve Douglas and Paul Schmitt, 411VM was the first of its kind, a platform showcasing the top talents of the time and quenching the public’s desire for video footage between the infrequent full-length skate videos of the time. Starting off with the now iconic intro song and heavy opening tricks, each video held memorable skating and now serves as time capsules of the progression of many of today’s top pros that were then just staring out. Departments like Pro Files, Wheels of Fortune, Rookies, and Chaos made each issue entertaining and delved a little deeper into skating than just the tricks. In the coming months, Skateboarder Magazine will become your home base for the entire 411VM archive. They will be adding a new issue each month along with exclusive interviews and video commentary from the people who made it all happen.
DECIBEL MAGAZINE: THE MAKING OF JUDGE’S “BRINGIN’ IT DOWN”
June 27th, 2012 by Ed
Excerpt from The August 2009 of Decibel Magazine: Upon finding out the next album our vaunted Hall of Fame was going to open its pearly gates to was slated to be Judge’s Bringin’ It Down, an anticipatory buzz broke out amongst the extreme music luminaries hanging around the Decibel table at the most recent Maryland Deathfest. Considering the congratulatory smiles and copious pats on the back, you’d think our Editor-in-Chief had just become a first-time father, with Pig Destroyer’s Blake Harrison summing up the joyous mood in a single well-worn adjective: “Awesome!” However, we realize that for most of you, Judge’s only full-length might be a tough sell. For one, it’s not a metal album. While the New York band made use of guitarist John “Porcell” Porcelly and bassist Matt Pincus’ most demonic tones thus far, churning tempos anchored by drummer Sam Siegler and the screaming bellow of one Mike “Judge” Ferraro, the rest of Bringin’ It Down pointed to clean and positive living by clean and positive hardcore kids. And Judge pointed hard. The quartet found themselves as the one of the last bastions of the New York straight-edge hardcore scene come the conclusion of the ’80s.
The filth, debauchery, alcohol, dope, guns and fucking in the streets that has nudged along so many extreme music recordings just wasn’t there. Judge stood tall in the face of changing times while helping to transform the musical landscape around them. Porcell, Ferraro, Siegler and Pincus may have had a list of priors that screamed “mile-wide X’s on the backs of your hands” (Youth of Today, Death Before Dishonor, Bold, Side by Side, Project X, Gorilla Biscuits, Young Republicans, Violent Children, Schism Records/fanzine, etc.), but even as they remained true to the edge, Bringin’ It Down moved towards a more sinister vibe and further promoted the nascent collision of metal and hardcore, while setting the stage for the likes of Integrity, Ringworm and Starkweather. This, in spite of—or maybe because of—having to re-record the album after a sub-par session at Chinatown’s infamous Chung King Studios. Not bad for a band that was originally designed to be a one-off for Ferraro’s frustration with the “Edge ’til 21 Crowd.” Harrison may have been about 5,500 words short in his summary, but yeah, “Awesome!”
CLICK HERE to download the entire article.
June 27th, 2012 by Gordo
THE FEW AND THE PROUD
June 27th, 2012 by Gordo
I was very a normal kid in high school, I wasn’t a “punk” outsider. I had plenty of friends and was good at sports. Gym teachers would pull me aside and wonder why I wasn’t playing for the high school basketball team. I told them I played music on the weekends and couldn’t commit to every game. Music teachers wanted me in the jazz band on drums. Same deal, if you were in the jazz band you had to be in the marching band and play at the Sunday football games. There was no way I could do that and also would never wear that stupid marching band outfit either. But once I started really getting into hardcore, everything fell to the wayside.
I was into skating too. I was friends with all the jocks, but nobody knew what the fuck we were into. Guys would always ask what was up with the hardcore t-shirts, what were they about, but they just didn’t get it or care really. But we weren’t outcasts by any stretch of the imagination. We were normal kids, we were just really into hardcore.
-Jay Laughlin, Turning Point
June 27th, 2012 by Gordo
BACK ON THE MAP
June 26th, 2012 by Gordo
CRUSH THE DEMONIAC
June 26th, 2012 by Gordo