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Friday, August 27, 2010

BOOKS OF ARMAGEDDON - PART ONE

The bottom line is that the scene in general was glued together by the underground 'zines. Hand in hand then with their tape trading brethren (often one in the same), a crusade was undertaken to bring unholy writ to the furthest corners of the Earth. Few locations were left without some semblance of underground activity – and all for extreme music of one form or another, most of which promoted politics or messages of almost every kind.



The zines became the prophets; raising the alarm to new bands that were championing sounds and styles that had never been seen or heard before. Given, some bands were then being influenced by newly crowned leaders, but over all the 'zines were heralding the fact that a new dawn had arrived for this music.

There may have been glossy magazines out there, but hardly pioneering where they in their spirit of solidarity with the underground idea. The advocates for what was coming, having the insight of decades of observation and hands on experience – it's easily seen to the discriminating eye that most if not all of the glossy magazines of the era pretty much spat right at the underground and it's kingpin bands – only to change tune and display some almost pornographic efforts to curry favour with the ones they'd forsaken years earlier.
You could find cartoons and artwork and even logos in many zines, which brought the humour and quality levels to new heights with the participation of guys like Bob Plante from Disturbed 'zine. (Photo - appeared in Buttface #2 1989 Australia)

 Morbid Magazine shirt from Norway. Editor Ronny Eide, we believe, produced the first fully glossy underground magazine. (Photos - Alan Moses)


 It wasn't because of a sudden ray of enlightenment opening the synapses to talent, but merely the cold hard reality of keeping a profit venture going, and watching the stale heavy metal scene spin in it's grave with the advent of Bay Area metal becoming rapidly unsellable. The formerly 'hardest metallers' to be found, suddenly faced the lesson of taking LSD and being shoved in front of a mirror – and they certainly hated what they saw.

A brooding and vindictive entity, greater than the sum of it's parts, cast them into a shadow that they have never been able to get out from underneath, except of course by swaying certain things into the commercial realm, which renders things mute from the biological vantage point of the glorious times.


FROM THE GLORIOUS TIMES



INDEED!

 Glorious Times editors Brian Pattison (Chainsaw Abortions) and Alan Moses (Buttface) former zines.

What is not contrived or distorted and what was not originally motivated by profit are the 'zines. And Glorious Times is a direct part of this entity, so we've been assembling some flashbacks from the LSD mirror, since combined, we are the ones that reflected misery and shallowness back upon the so called 'authority on matters'. This is a story of sheer dedication, unsponsored and raw, lacking  the drives of profit or fame or notoriety. The 'zines primary objectives being to expose what was coming, unveil what was happening, and to give something back (on a physical level) to the bands that gave US some of the most memorable times of our early lives – and for a portion of us – what our lives have been since awakening to the music to begin with.

The pen, and also the photo-copy machine – were mightier than the sword. Share now some of the recollections from the front line of the glorious times. This is a multi-part series which we intend to spotlight as time and submissions allow. Enjoy!

JOE PUPO from The Rage of Violence 'zine:

Joe Pupo with his copy of the glory! (Photo - courtesy Joe Pupo)

I always look back at days of the underground in the 80s and early 90s as the fondest time of my life. It started for me in 1983 when I stopped into the local record store to buy something new. There it was, still in a box of new records: This album with a hammer and blood on the album cover. Of course it was Metallica's "Kill Em All". I hadn't heard anything like this before and I was instantly hooked.

Music kept getting faster and heavier. I started tape trading in 1984, then the scene started to explode in 1985 with bands like Exodus, Possessed, Kreator, Destruction, Dark Angel and so many more. I started going to a lot of shows, but I couldn't get enough of thrash and death metal.


 Another of Bob Plante's classic cartoons which were known to pop up in the weirdest of locations in the zine world. (courtesy - Bob Plante)




The underground was growing so rapidly. There were so many great bands popping up all over the world: NY, SF, Tampa, Sweden, the UK, etc. At the time, you couldn't really read about death metal music in the mainstream mags, so people started writing their own fanzines. I bought every copy I had the chance to get. Looking back, tape trading and fanzines were the life-blood of the underground. They allowed us to spread the word about our great music. We were spread all over the world, but we were all connected through the Underground. It was an exciting time for music.

One day my friend Mike McPhillips and I decided to do our own fanzine. We thought if others could it, why not us? We certainly loved the music. It would be a chance to not only meet some of our favorite bands, but also spread the word about them. We needed a name and we wanted it to sound angry and violent, so we went with The Rage of Violence.

Some bands we interviewed in person like Kreator and Destruction, some by phone like Sepultura and Death, while the rest we did by mail. We had an interview with Nuclear Assault, so we put a picture of John Connelly on the cover. We also tried to feature some of lesser known (at the time) local bands like Revenant, Ripping Corpse, and Prime Evil.





When I worked at Atlantic Records, I did a short assignment in the Printing Department. So, I printed up about 500 copies of the fanzine and we sold out pretty quickly through mail order, at record stores, and at local shows. The orders kept coming in, so eventually I sold the few copies I put aside for myself. To this day, I don't even have a copy for myself.

I started writing a second issue of the fanzine. I hadn't completed it, but it was already longer than the first issue which was pretty big in itself. At the time, Ed Farshtey and I had been talking about starting up a record label. When I saw how expensive the quotes were from commercial printers and the second issue wasn't even completed yet, I decided to just invest the money into our record label. Sadly, that was the end of the Rage of Violence, but it was the beginning of Rage Records.

I have a lot of great memories from writing those two issues. I loved writing and I loved contributing to a scene that meant everything to me at the time. The best part of writing my zine was that I got to meet a lot of great people and bands. I remember meeting my good friend Mario Junco at show in Miami when I sold him a copy of the zine. I also remember a time when G.G.  Allen wrote to me from prison demanding a copy (for free) of the Rage of Violence. Interviewing Mille from Kreator in the basement at LaMours was a thrill I'll never forget or the guys from Destruction at Sundance in Long Island. There were many more moments like that. Thank you for allowing me to re-live some of those memories. Glorious Times indeed.


The Mighty Soothsayer 1987 w/ Justin Ivey's War & Pain shirt! (Photo - courtesy Chris Petit)


JOHN DEATHRASHER from Deathrasher Mag:

  
Mainstream Glam was getting way too big in 1984, so we decided to make a DEATH, SPEED and HARDCORE fanzine called Death Thrasher Mag in early 1984 after reading zines like KICK ASS, METAL FORCES and so many more. I was 24 years old at that time. 

 
Deathrasher #1 1984 (courtesy - John Deathrasher)

DEATHRASHER was a fan thing made by fans for the fans, not made by weekend warriors, and made for the love of METAL and all the great things that came with it: meeting other cool people with the same interest, metal chicks were a big part in the early years too. The early years we paid for everything we put in the zine by supporting the bands, buying the shirts, demos, LP's, EP's, pins, posters, all the goods right from them to review (not to get things for free). Not until labels like Roadrunner, New Renaissance, Steamhammer, RC and others got a hold of me somehow, still to this day I have no idea how.

 Deathrasher #7 (courtesy - John Deathrasher)

For issue number 2 we changed the name to DEATHRASHER FANZINE. Being a long time fan of hard rock/heavy metal music (since 1970) I hooked up with Mad Mike (later changed to Madman Mike because of a gay video place called Mad Mike's Gay Videos, yeah we broke his balls for it). We were pretty much into the same type of music. We were like night and day. He was a black dude and I'm white. Not too many blacks around here was like the MAD MAN into thrash metal (I believe the other blacks made fun of him/beat him up in the ghettos). 

 Madman Mike. (Courtesy - John Deathrasher)

He had mentioned to me about doing a zine and showed me a flyer. So MadMan Mike became a main man for DEATHRASHER FANZINE as the writer / interviews. I put it together/thoughts and came up with the name DEATHRASHER. By no means was I or am I an editor, just a fan. We only printed about 100 copies of each issue (1 - 9).

Mike was kicked out of the zine for personal reasons, so he did not write for all of them. It was supposed to come out 4 times a year but never really happened. It was when ever we put it out. Most of them were really bad looking too. I had a young son so it was kinda hard to do both, sometimes as I lived a ruff kinda life before my son Todd was born in 1983. Todd wore Motorhead and Dio shirts as an infant and the funny thing about that is he later became a Motorhead / Dio fan on his own. I did not push my views on my son or anybody else for that matter (sounded to much like a religion to me).

 The littlest Deathrasher. (courtesy - John Deathrasher)

Mike would get a shit loads of demos/test pressing and so on from a friend (Jay R) from NY, test pressing from Slayer 'Hell Awaits' and before the LP came out. Sodom's 'Pretenders To The Throne' (original name before 'Obsessed By Cruelty came out). We concentrated on DEATH, SPEED and HARDCORE (1984-1988 era). I really hated punk rock in my teens unless it was Iggy Pop or the Dictators etc.. Not till I heard Dr Know around 1984 is when I started to like hardcore punk music. My zine never really went anywhere but that is not why I did it or why I brought it back in 2005.


In 1988 I felt it was time to give it up. Scenes around here were dying and all the greats were putting out shit that I hated. Even though I'm not well liked I felt in 2005 I should bring it back and I met some really cool folks like you guys who I thank dearly for including me on this project. I also did a zine with Rob from Atrocity (CT) called DEATHRASHER'S BOOK OF THE DEAD 1 (all covers included for this special blog). Funny memories, driving up to see POST MORTEM in a hallway at a radio station. MAD MIKE had to drive up in the back of a pickup truck under a tent in pouring and I mean down pouring rain for the 3 hours driving from CT to MASS. He wanted to go and that was the only way to get there and being a die hard he did it. I believe that was in 1986. 

 Deathrasher's Book Of The Dead. (courtesy - John Deathrasher)

Another memory at the Enfield CT roller rink was seeing DRI in 1986 or so. Inside, some Billy Idol looking dude started shit with me and Madman fucked his shit up inside the roller rink. It ended up outside after the show and Kurt's (DRI) brother was hanging with us by our car partying and he pulled out a crowbar and said I'm with U guys. Eric I think his name was.

 Haven't heard PTL KLUB? Fix that right now!!
 
In 1987 I put out the PTL Klub's 7" 'Nobody Cares Anymore' and it sold out the 1000 copies I pressed fast and was loved around the world. 1990 I vanished into thin air. 2005 I came back with a best of worst of, and since 2005 I came out with number 11 and 12 and awaiting number THIRTEEN (out in the Fall of 2010) with BULLDOZER, OZ, SACRIFICIAL BLOOD, MASSACRE, EXALTED,  PILEDRIVER and maybe ATROCITY from CT. I am ending it after THIRTEEN.


 John with the illustrious Piggy June 29 1986 @ Sneakers, Brandford CT. (Photo - courtesy John Deathrasher)

 Hanging out with Voivod  for the 1986/1987 shows was the best time of my life, my whole metal life  (1970 - 2010). Hanging backstage at Sneakers in Brandford CT, eating Tom G's  food, as he was pissed off in the corner, while Snake said to me "FUCK HIM, EAT JOHN!"  Smoking hash in the back room of an in store appearance with Voivod and Tom G. aka Celtic Frost. The record shop owner let me and Snake go in the back room. Yes, I was the only one in the USA with HASH, I gave them CHUNKS hahahahah Awesome time, awesome people I say. At the show that night, the last Voivod song, the bouncer had me by one arm and Snake up on stage singing had my other arm. Yes they tossed me out. What a classic moment that was. I WAS THE HASH MAN BUT NO MORE, 1980's are long gone but not forgotten in my eyes and in The GLORIOUS TIMES aka Brian and Alan.


The Glorious Times of John Deathrasher!


WATCH THE DEATHRASHER #13 2010 PROMO VIDEO RIGHT HERE!!

*Thanks lads for participating, and thanks to Bob Plante for the kickass art!

3 comments:

B.N.Fanzine said...

Great, Great, Post!!!!!!!
wainting to read 2dd part!!

GLORIOUS TIMES said...

Thanks Jorge, we have been working on others and have one ready to go, not sure when we'll have it up at GT blogspot - but keep your eyes out for it pal! Thanks for EVERYTHING!!! :)

MAKE ME AN OFFER I CAN'T REFUSE - FTW said...

Thx for the Glorious Times piece. I was rarely added in anything other then DT. I want to thank u from the bottom of my black heart guys. All the best of luck!