In between it all, Sex Vid, Outlook, Keep it Clear and Get the Most traded sets at Old School Pizza. The diversity of the bill had me thinking about how divers the tastes of RXI are. I decided that for December, we're going to do a Right Idea A-to-Z review of some of our favorite bands (Read: Chuck's favorite radio rap 'artists') and their subsequent records.
From here on out, we the boys (and man) of Right Idea will be breaking down a few of our favorite records A to Z. Better than advent and starting way sooner, that makes for 26 records alternating letters through our humble ranks in the month of December.
I'll start today like a new jack would, with American Nightmare's Background Music:
I admittedly got into AN later than the hype wagon. I think John gave me the first 7" on a cd-r in fall 2003. At that point I had been a Rev and Victory guy and my knowledge of recent Equal Vision and then up-and-coming Bridge 9 was pretty slim. Either way, this was my introduction to AN in the recorded medium, and the last thing Dana Murray ever heard from them.
I put on the Background Music lp a few weeks later and I was totally into it. No, it wouldn't be a record that changed my life, nor anything that I got tattooed onto me, but it did play in the background of many skate sessions, late-night runs, drives to shows and CSU hang outs.
Basically this record took fast hardcore drums, rock riffs and pissed vocals and smashed them together in a way that people in my generation hadn't widely heard before. The lyrics were totally themed in a way that the proto-scenesters loved, they had parts begging for pile-on sing-alongs and mosh parts for the guys walking the fence between being tough and liking fast hardcore. Was this the 'something for everyone' lp of that era of hardcore? Maybe. Was this record a front-to-back rager that made it into repress numerous times? You bet.
Some might argue that this wasn't as good as the 7" or the GUTG LP, but everyone will admit, this record captured a moment in that era of hardcore. I remember old Names for Graves van conversations about the most anticipated LP's in hardcore, and aside from Count Me Out and Carry On, this was all we came up with (Note: This was pre-Champion's Promises Kept and pre-Planet Mental, both of which were highly hyped and anticipated). I'll even argue that for a whole generation of kids, this was the 'Judge record' of previous generations that got kids stoked on a life of shows, shirts and hardcore. Disagree if you want, "I'm just sayin'..."
Nate's special mentions: AF: United Blood or Victim in Pain, As Friends Rust S/T, Any of the Atari 7"s.
Next Up: Hess, John and Chuck hit B, C and D respectively.
Photo: AN in Wilkes Barre, 2001.