Armed with only my (dim) wit, I have endeavored to put together Episode 17 of Tales From The Dropbox with the singular intent of leaving you with only one question after you finish this episode: why? I say, why not!
Episode 17 contains a collection of rather ripping punk rock songs demonstrating that it will be punk rock, and punk rock alone that will save the world from self-destruction and not that sniveling snot they call pop. Let it be said that none of the artists featured in this week’s episode will appear on TMZ. They will not, by the grace of God, be involved with any of the Kardashians or engage in any scandalous rock star celebrity behavior, because after all, this in punk rock not pop. The “why” question posed above relates to nostalgia: the examination of the past from the long view at the other end of the experience tunnel. While I believe new is awesome, sometimes as reexamination of the past is necessary to give context to the discussion of great music. A nostalgic look means that some things are by design a little fuzzy, but in taking the journey back, I discovered that some of the songs from that period – the far past – should be revisited to see if they still stand up.
So, a touch of nostalgia creeps into this week’s episode. I have included a not so famous but darn catchy “toon” from Vancouver, B.C.’s punk rock legends, D.O.A., and a cover song performed by the amazing Slits. There are a ton of great “old” songs, and these songs that were never radio hits are as good a place as any to start the trip.
As for social justice and other newsworthy issues that are part of each episode’s preamble (freeing me up to just focus on the music during the program rather than get sidetracked), I was surprised to read a story regarding the impact of illegal immigrants not being properly licensed to drive and thereafter becoming involved in numerous fatal crashes with few consequences. The AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety, which obtains state-by-state data from the federal government Fatality Analysis Reporting System (FARS) database – found that 20 percent of fatal crashes involved an unlicensed driver. From 2010-2014, there was an average of 32,887 road deaths per year, which means 6,577 were caused by unlicensed drivers. Those drivers include citizens with suspended or revoked licenses, and those who never had licenses. Several estimates indicate that 50% of this number involve drivers who don’t belong in the U.S. much less behind a wheel. That is, approximately 3500 deaths per year result from the failure to adequately enforce immigration laws. Staggering. California is the first state permitting licensing of undocumented persons permitting them to obtain both a license and the necessary insurance. However, in other states, persons who are not legally in the country and are not legally licensed to drive, kill people. No matter how you feel about the immigration issue, the licensing issue should be a no-brainer. Immigration is for the federal government to decide, but a drivers license is purely a state concern and states must take steps to prevent individuals from driving illegally. Check out here: http://unlicensedtokill.org/
Final note: If you are offended by, or sensitive to, the liberal and pronounced utilization of the f-word, then perhaps skip the song by D.O.A, okay?
Here is what you’ll find in Episode #17:
- Bleached – “Sleepwalking” (Welcome the Worms)
- Plaque Vendor – “Chopped” (Blood Sweat)
- Wolfpunch – “Sick System” (Fuck the Valium)
- Second Best – “Drag Me Down” (Outgrown)
- Trial Day 141 – “Again, Again” (Rowing Against Time)
- Double Veterans – “Heaven vs. Hell (Double Veterans)
- Bad Luck – “I’m the Lion, You’re Dead” (Noise in Your Head)
- The Mute Gods – “Night school for Idiots” (Do Nothing Till You Hear from Me)
- Violent SoHo – “Blanket” (WACO)
- Dead Stars – “In My Mind” (Bright Colors)
- Undertipper – “Alcoholics” (Barely Making Cents)
- Scott Sorry – “Broken Hearts and 45’s” (When We Were Kings)
- The White Noise – “Bloom” (Aren’t You Glad EP)
- D.O.A. – “Marijuana Motherfucker” (The Black Spot)
- Slits – “I Heard It Through the Grapevine” (Cut)
They’ll bust yer F@% ass if they wanna … I bet you’re wonderin’ how I knew
‘Bout your plans to make me blue …and I’m just about to lose my mind.