Sunday, March 23, 2008
When I was first told this, Tim was busy getting underway with Hands Tied, and yet I was just a thirteen year-old young buck trying to beg a ride to the next Floorpunch show and figuring out how to cop a Way It Is LP with the booklet. But in my mind, this sounded like it was gonna be the greatest thing to be printed on paper. A modern day recipe of Schism mixed with a dose of Boiling Point, from the brain of a dude who saw the coolest shit first hand, there was no way this could be anything short of modern day straight edge hardcore perfection. And even with roughly 600 core-related activities on my “things to do” list, being one of the first people to acquire Double Cross Fanzine #1 was definitely at the top. But just like a Project X “Edge Of Quarrel” LP, the issue proved non-existent and that was a bummer.
At some point over the next decade, Tim went from being the singer of a couple of my favorite bands to one of my best friends, and the topic of Double Cross Fanzine would continuosly come up. Many breads were broken discussing interviews, stories, photos, layouts, etc., and I definitely wanted on board. Somehow the blog medium was discussed, and even though I think both of us had some hesitancy about the whole “blog” concept (I personally still dislike the term), we ultimately realized that this was gonna work best for what we want to do. And really, this is Tim’s pet creation – I am just down to be along for the ride. The idea: various topics and tidbits connected to straight edge hardcore that at least we think are worthy of some binary archiving and discussion.
It’s 2008, and I’m not regularly going to shows, too apprehensive and complacent about doing a print zine, and not really doing a full fledged band. But sitting down to eat tremendous amounts of food with Tim, Ed and company and talking for five to six hours about the finer points of hardcore is probably my favorite thing to do. Maybe that’s not your thing. But if it is, and you haven’t made it out with us to Stuff Your Face, Scavo’s, or The Robin, then grab a (diet) soda and get comfortable. I’d like to think that this site basically serves as a sample of “minutes” that could be taken from an outing at any of the fine restaurants we close down in the tri-state area on a random weekend night. -Gordo XXX
Filmed in April of 1990 at Trenton New Jersey’s City Gardens, this is the Judge “Where It Went” video. This was definitely one of the highlight shows of my show going experiences. Like usual, I remember showing up to the show early and hanging around outside the club. Echoing through the empty venue was Judge playing “Where It Went”, over and over again. Before the doors opened, the film crew were capturing some of the up close angles of the band members without the interruption of the crowd. Some friends and I would crack open the side doors to sneak a quick peek of the action. By the time the show started and most importantly, Judge hit the stage, the entire club was in a frenzy. Everyone knew the cameras were on and everyone wanted to get themselves on film, so the “No Stagediving” rule usually kept in mind at a City Gardens show, was quickly thrown out the window. I recall Judge either opening with “Where It Went”, or at least playing it very early in their set. The crowd went insane, but I think a lot of people held back because they didn’t want to risk getting thrown out and missing the remainder of Judge’s set. By the end of the set, Mike announced to the crowd that they were going to play “Where It Went” one more time, only this time Mike urged the crowd not to hold back. This time was nothing less than pure insanity, bodies were hurling everywhere. I was determined to get a piece of the action, so I made my way on to and quickly off the stage and on top of the crowd. Before anyone knew it, the song was over, the set was complete and a very memorable night had come to an end. When all was said and done, I did manage to get myself in the video Unfortunately my appearance wasn’t for a stage a dive, but for a sing along. For a Judge video, I’ll take what I can get. -TM
The year was 1986 and skateboarding was my life. With skateboarding came complete and total submergence into anything and everything that was associated with it. Thrasher magazine was my bible. Through reading Thrasher, I discovered skate rock, punk rock and hardcore. Not too long into this discovery I meet a local kid who ends up giving me a formal introduction to the real world of punk and hardcore.
Before I know it, I’m finding myself at my first show. It was June 27th of 1987 with the Descendents, Rollins, M.I.A and a band called Cancerous Growth. The club was a local one in Trenton, NJ called City Gardens and I was all of 13 years old. Along with this early introduction period, fanzines were a big part of what was going on. Within the year I found myself putting together my first fanzine, comprised of a mix of skating and hardcore, properly named “Slew.” Over the next year and a half I did three issues of Slew, interviewing bands like B’LAST!, McRad, Pagan Babies, Aware!, Unit Pride, Bold and Turning Point. By late 1988, I decided to combine my efforts with a friend and put together a bigger and better fanzine that would truly capture what was going on around us.
We decided upon the name Common Sense and drew a lot of inspiration from other great fanzines of the time. Fanzines like Boiling Point, Schism, Smorgasbord and Open Your Eyes were the blueprint to what we wanted to do with Common Sense. Over two issues we interviewed bands like Youth Of Today, Gorilla Biscuits, Chain Of Strength, Alone In A Crowd, No For An Answer, Sick Of It All, Insted, Vision, Turning Point, Release, Enuf and Up Front. Doing Common Sense was an incredible experience and it vastly took my involvement in hardcore to a whole new level. By 1989 I was so involved and so inspired by so many great bands, that I knew I had to take my involvement to the next level…I had to start my own band.
1990 gave birth to Mouthpiece and I found myself as the man behind the mic. Six years later brought forth the end of Mouthpiece, but also the beginning of a new band. This band would be known as Hands Tied. Along with Hands Tied, I started getting the urge to jump back into the fanzine scene once again. Over the years I had managed to collect a massive pile of band photos and found myself in touch with bands all over the world. I decided upon the name Double Cross, which came from talking to an old pen pal from San Francisco, CA area in the late 80s. This guy had told me about a band called Double Cross, which was to be the new Unit Pride, since Unit Pride was breaking up. I don’t remember all the details, but it was supposed to be a total straight edge band. Unfortunately I don’t believe anything ever came of the band, but the name always stuck in my head. This guy that I use to write was an artist and had drawn and designed the last Unit Pride shirt for their east coast tour, he also designed a logo for this never-to-be band, Double Cross. I recall the logo looking incredible and that was another reason that the name never left my head.
From 1996 through 1997 I began piecing things together for the first issue of Double Cross fanzine. I did one massive interview with Porcell after a Shelter show in Asbury Park, NJ. Unfortunately, doing the band Hands Tied and trying to put together the fanzine proved to be too large of a task for me to juggle successfully. The result was Double Cross would lie dormant over the next three years.
By late 1999 into early 2000 I started picking the pieces back up and trying to assemble Double Cross once again. I did two more interviews: Tim Monroe from Unit Pride and a absurdly long five hour interview with Matt Warnke of Bold. Because that interview with Matt was so long, transcribing it became too overwhelming of a task. Sure I could have cut it down and edited it into something more manageable, but there was truly no content I wanted to leave out. Again, the result was a fanzine that would lie dormant for another four years.
In 2004 Double Cross was again resurrected, but this time as a means to create, design and release three different t-shirt designs. The plan was to do the shirts and kick off Double Cross as an online web zine. The shirts were done and sold, but once again, the unfortunate reality was that the web zine never came to fruition despite tons of concept ideas.
So here we are over ten years since the inception of Double Cross and it is finally seeing the light of day as a web zine / blog. Ideally, with the help of Gordo, I’d like to keep this updated regularly with new photos, interviews and writings. We’ll do our best to get the word out as things are updated, but please check back often. Thanks and take care. -TM
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