It’s no secret that I’m a huge fan of The Descendents, so you can imagine how damn stoked I am for their latest release ‘9th & Walnut’. Long story short, all of these songs from the new album are from the late seventies and early eighties. Lost tracks the band demoed but never released, instead produced a batch of new songs that became their iconic album ‘Milo Goes to College’.
Well in 2002 the original line up recorded this lost album and in 2020 lead singer Milo Aukerman finally recorded the lead vocals for it. What we end up with is a bonafide classic brought back to the future, literally a lost punk rock time capsule. It oozes of eighties goodness with the sound and type of songs that I feel have been missing largely from the band’s last two albums.
It also Clearly is oozing with teen angst, nowhere to be found are songs about getting too old or not being able to eat the greasy food you want anymore. Instead we get a batch of snotty love songs and angry punk ragers clearly fueled by a hefty dose of caffeine & french fries. This is the exact way that I love my Descendents, drenched in the 1980s sunshine and no filter. It’s also notable that the sound comes full circle with the original lineup intact even though sadly guitarist Frank Navetta passed away not long after this was recorded.
Jam packed with classic guitar riffs with plenty of their nostalgic attitude & the sweet melodies of their original bassist Tony Lombardo bring me back to simpler times. This album IMO is an absolute dream come true for hardcore fans who grew up listening to them in the 1980s. The anthems of those awkward teen nerds come alive one last time with this latest release from the Descendents! Mmmm…TOTALLY!
I rarely ever do music posts here, but every now and again I’ll throw something up that really means something to me. Well today I wanted to share a few videos that recently surfaced from one of my all time favorite nearly forgotten bands, Canada’s own DOUGHBOYS. The Doughboys, who formed in ’86 have been a staple in my teen years right up to today. My best description of them would probably be to call them Canada’s answer to HUSKER DU (except with more focus on vocal harmonies) another of my all time faves. Blending their punk roots with crunchy power pop before the likes of Blink 182 was everyone’s go to idea of what pop punk is. I’d even go as far to say that in the early 90’s they were kinda like what the the classic early Foo Fighters would eventually become.
They also were one of the most entertaining & energetic live bands I’ve ever seen, I often felt bad for any band who had to follow them on a bill and the sheer amount of hair this band had collectively would leave any metal band envious. If you like the sound of what I’m laying out here I recommend checking out their 5 albums, you won’t be disappointed. So back in 1996 these guys released their last album ‘Turn Me On’ and it was one of their best. My old band, Ben Grim, even opened for them once in Green Bay, Wisconsin at the iconic ‘Concert Cafe’ during this period, ah those were the days.
Ok so the one thing that was exciting about this era of the Doughboys was that they replaced their longtime lead guitarist. Normally I’d have been upset by the news, but they chose Darren “Wiz” Brown (RIP), the singer/guitarist of one of my other all time favorite bands, Mega City Four, to keep the band in tact. Mega City Four is basically the British counterpart to bands like Husker DU and the Doughboys & Wiz even co wrote songs with the band. So hearing he’d joined made me and my friends most excited for what they might come up with for their next album. However that sadly was not the case, the Doughboys career didn’t last much longer and to my knowledge they only recorded one song with the Wiz in the line up (unless of course they did some demos?!). Still, he was clearly a Doughboy and was pictured on the album and also in the videos that ‘Turn Me On’ produced.
Yeah there were a couple videos back then that never saw the light of day here in the USA, but now 25 years later they of course surface on Youtube! The damn wonders of the internet, I tell you. So hopefully this post might be seen by other fans of the band. who like me. missed out on them decades ago, it was a big deal for Mega City Four and the Doughboys to merge back in the mid 90’s. For a few minutes upon watching these videos I felt the pressures of the modern day vanish into simpler sweeter times of alternative 90’s rock. Check out ‘I Never Liked You’ one of the band’s best songs from ‘Turn Me On’ that also features the late great Wiz on guitar…
….and another great one ‘Everything and After’ from the same album:
Also some footage I posted from the same era:
I saw a couple really cool animated music videos this week and it really got me wondering – what are the greatest cartoon / animated music videos of all time?! There’s a few that come to mind immediately and I know there are a ton that likely have fallen under the radar over the years.
The videos I’ve chosen are official ones by the actual artist, mainly more of an old school traditional animated or hand drawn style & I’ve steered away this time of the modern CG style stuff. Maybe some day I’ll investigate that further in the mean time check this out and most definitely let me know if I have left something off of the list – so let’s get crackin’ here as we figure out exactly what the coolest animated videos of all time are!!
Descendents – No Fat Burger (2016)
Here’s a brand spankin’ new video from one of my personal favorite bands of all time. The Descendents have been around since 1978 and packing the pop into punk like no other band can. This cool frantic animated video finally finds it’s cartoon mascot (and lead singer) “Milo” growing older and trying to resist eating everything unhealthy in sight. The band now in their fifties still has the energy but let’s face the facts, they just can’t eat the way they used to as teenagers. This is a call back to their classic song ‘I Like Food’. I always wanted to see the Milo character come to life in animation and the wait is finally over.
A-ha – Take On Me (1985)
Here’s one of the most popular videos of all time and it’s animated! Aside from this song being one of the best pop tunes of the 1980’s it also featured this incredible video filled with adventure & pure heart. The song was released several times but failed to chart, however when they produced this amazing video the whole thing exploded. One of the best things about it is that it tells a short action packed story that really sticks with you long after the video is over. The cool rotoscoping animation also gives it a hyper realistic quality no one had ever seen before in a music video. A true classic.
Today was a special occasion as one of my all time favorite bands dropped a new song from their upcoming album due out July 29th! Yep the Descendents are back and kicking ass again with an old school sounding track called Victim of Me. If you haven’t already check it out below! The Descendents prove that they indeed have NOT grown up!! Check it! Milo, punk rock’s most famous nerd is back!
I had to put up some of these awesome variant covers for one of my favorite comic books out on the scene right now- We Can Never Go Home. Being a big fan of classic punk rock I can’t say enough about how cool these are. If you haven’t checked out the book yet it’s a super fun read and set back in the 1980s. They’ve been doing some various variant covers in the theme of classic 80’s punk rock album cover. Here’s are the comic book covers along with the album covers they’re based on! Get this book from Black Mask Studios and yeah if you haven’t already – get these albums!!
The time has come to go back to my punk roots!! My first real passion as a kid was comic books but it wasn’t long until I fully discovered something else that truly engaged me – punk rock. Yes I grew up in Wisconsin and most people seem to think that all America’s Dairyland has to offer is beer & cheese, but hell you couldn’t be more wrong! Wisconsin has an incredibly rich history in punk rock and “Green Blah! The History of Green Bay Punk Rock” will once and for all prove all the naysayers wrong!!
When I was a kid I discovered how much was actually really going on in the punk scene right there. Sure there may not have been the legendary bands like Black Flag, Descendents, Circle Jerks or Bad Brains emerging from the scene but there were a lot of equally awesome bands that never got the respect they deserved from way back in the day. This documentary will prove that!
Growing up near Green Bay in the 80’s & 90’s was awesome for a kid like me who was hooked on the music because the scene there was bursting full of life. Yep Green Bay was where it was at if you were a touring punk band! The kids there were ravenous for punk because lets face it, there wasn’t a fuck of a lot to do in the suburbs of Wisconsin other than Skate & Destroy and go to punk rock shows. So now we finally get to let everyone in on the awesome scene that Green Bay & Wisconsin had going on! Green Blah! is a film by veteran Wisco punks Chris Pretti & James Baker and right now you can help fund this Documentary on Kickstarter! So all you punk rockers out there help these guys get this flick out there to document another important chapter in the history of punk music. Check this shit out and get on board already!!
Oh how I love the 80’s! There’s something truly unique about that decade and even more so to me, having grown up in that era. That might be one of the reasons why I am loving ‘We Can Never Go Home‘ from Black Mask Studios so much, it really holds some serious nostalgia within it’s pages. In the late 80’s I was probably just about the same age as these characters in the book and was fueled by things like skateboarding, punk rock and well for me…girls. This series is set in 1989 and feature two characters who somehow seem like long lost characters from my childhood, only these two teens have something other than just raging hormones pulsating through their veins, they’ve also got some strange superhuman abilities. So what’s so unique about a story with some teenage misfits with dangerous mutant like powers you might ask?
Well writer Matthew Rosenberg pulls no punches and at issue #2 we see our two leads getting into a boat load of serious, serious trouble. Imagine if you were a teenager with raging hormones and you had a peculiar case of superhuman strength or could kill someone with your mind? It’d be a dangerous scenario and after our two troubled teens Madison & Duncan become friends it becomes quite an unholy alliance. With Madison sending her boyfriend crashing through a car window after he picks a fight with a loner punk rocker Duncan, things begin to get real messy real quick. Soon these two find out they have more in common than they ever imagined.
After one fatal move the two are bound to never go home and head off on a road trip that by issue number two will have you gasping for air. These two teens just seem to get deeper and deeper into a tangled web that could easily cost them and anyone they care about their lives. So what better solution than stealing a car and robbing the local drug dealer of all his cash huh?
I’m also loving all of excellent references to old punk rock, mix tapes with everything awesome & confusing about being a teen in the 1980’s. It’s clear Rosenberg himself is a fan of the era and he captures the heart of a great rebellious 80’s flick within the pages of his book, which isn’t an easy task. I can already see this series transformed into great tv series or movie, kind like if ‘Heathers’ and ‘Firestarter’ got together and had lovechild.
So in a time when superhero books leave you feeling a bit empty inside it’s nice to know we’ve got a true alternative to the genre and one more exciting road trip left to go on with that awesome girl (or boy) that may have have got away many years ago. Just make sure to bring that totally rad old mix tape on this ride because is gonna get epic and most definitely deadly…
So it looks like someone decided that it’d be cool to recreate some of the classic Nintendo games with punk icons in the roles of your favorite video game characters. I guess this is kinda neat, a bit random & pointless maybe but still an interesting twist. You can play these games for free on Punktendo.com.
You can play as Milo of The Descendents in “Milo-fu”, you can play as the fan punching Fat Mike in a game of Golf, You can be Danzig in Mega Man or you can be Mikey Erg (not quite a punk icon, but maybe the creator’s friend?) in Super Mario Bros. as well as a few other non punk games like “Gay Popeye” etc.
I’d have been a bit more pumped if these games had more original concepts behind them, like a nerd revenge game with “Milo in Milo in College” taking on jock bullies would be a fun one. If anything though these are worth a play or two just for kicks- check it out! Oh yeah and this happened a day or so ago, Fat Mike kicked the shit out of one of his fans at a NOFX show who jumped on stage to sing along to one of his fave tunes! now this could be a great video game concept- Fat Mike’s ‘Fan Attack’! In the video game happy NOFX fans could storm the stage in joy and you could control Fat Mike as he beats their asses to a pulp!! I’m thinking kinda like Robotron: 2084 maybe? Damn I should be making these games-they’d be a helluva lot more interesting!!
I’m taking a moment here to share a new song from my latest musical endeavor The Davis Baby! Yes it’s named after that little mutant monster baby from the 70’s horror flick “It’s Alive”. See back in the mid 90’s I lived in Wisconsin & I played in a pop punk band called Ben Grim, we were inspired by bands like Descendents/ALL, The Doughboys, The Hard-ons ect, we released some records and toured around the US with our best buddies Fun Size (one of the best pop punk bands of the 90’s). It was some of the best times of my life, as Bryan Adams might say. So I decided to put together a group today that sort of brought that old Ben Grim sound back.
We wrote four songs of crunchy old school power pop the way we would have done it back in the Ben Grim days. The project features my former band mate Joel Vega, who sang and played guitar in Ben Grim with me, my old pal Kevin Carl from lates 80’s/90’s band G-Whiz & Jim Wadsworth my good friend/fellow D&D player from Portland, Oregon band Danger Death Ray. We posted a FREE/name your price download of our new song “Laid to Rest”. It’s meant to be free but bandcamp doesn’t just let you list the track as purely “free”. So please no need to pay just download it!
It’s gonna be featured on our upcoming split ep with Higley (Kevin Carl & Duane Kiener of G-Whiz, Kris Roe of The Ataris & Bill Stevenson of Descendents/ALL/Black Flag) out soon on SP Records. The song also features Mark Arnold from Big DRILL Car on guitar. Which we were fully stoked to have play on it as Big DRILL Car remains to this day one of my favorite bands ever!
Download The Davis Baby for FREE here https://thedavisbaby.bandcamp.com/
Like us on Facebook HERE!
I’m trying to get the word out on this project, and it’s tough in this day and age to get anything out there on your own in the vast sea of the internet, so if you like it please help me share the song-maybe we’ll record more or start playing live!
I was lucky enough to see the new documentary “Filmage” over the holidays, a movie I felt like I’d waited my whole life to see! Yeah it was that good and it chronicles the story of the legendary pop-punk godfathers the DESCENDENTS / ALL from their start in the late 1970’s. It’s about time that these guys get the recognition they deserve and it seems as if these days they are more popular than they’ve ever been.
If you don’t know who the Descendents are then this is the perfect place to start as Filmage is premiering now all over the USA. But plain and simple The Descendents are the BEST pop punk band of all time. They’ve influenced countless bands and if it it wasn’t for them It be a safe bet to say that a band like Green Day would have never existed. I pretty much sum them up as the ultimate in real teen angst. The true spirit of what it was like to be a nerdy teen with raging hormones. Growing up in the 80’s I loved punk rock but it wasn’t until I heard them the first time that I really found a band that truly spoke to me as a teen.
The Descendents said all of the shit that you were really feeling growing up, something a lot of the punk bands lyrically were maybe too macho to sing about. Yeah they were most definitely not politically correct, at times even sexist, incredibly sappy, often crude and totally immature but at their core just a band of heartbroken nerds with no punk rock image. They covered the spectrum of hardcore punk while at the same time ripping into shameless love songs simultaneously. How many bands can even pull that off today much less back in 1982?!
Well Filmage gives us the full scoop into the minds of these guys, their lives, their struggles and transitioning from the Descendents into the much less popular outfit ALL back in 1987. The movie was made by true Dents fans and it shows by how much care was put into this documentary. Filled with amazing vintage footage of the band, incredibly personal interviews, hilarious animated sequences and interviews with the likes of Dave Grohl, Mike Watt, Mark Hoppus, Keith Morris amongst many others whom cite the band as having a huge influence on them.
It’s funny, sonically awesome and emotional as we follow the struggles of the band members lives up to current times. The movie in the end is really the full story of Bill Stevenson, the bands only constant member throughout Descendents and ALL while also filling us in on his time as drummer for Black Flag from 1982-1985.
It’s his journey as the band leader and all of the friends along the way that helped make his dream a reality. It tells us exactly why the band is finally getting the attention they deserved all these years. While watching it I was almost glad they never hit the big time, as the band always stayed true to their signature sound til this day. We also get a great glimpse into ALL’s struggle to fill the shoes of the bands most valuable musical weapon, Milo Aukerman, the ultimate nerd front man.
I don’t wanna give away to much of the story but I put this up there on the same level as “A Band Called Death” one of the years best rockumentaries. So check this out if you’re jones’n for the full story of the greatest melodic hardcore band of all time-you won’t be disappointed!
Check out the trailer: