Friday, October 8, 2010
An Interview with A Suburban Show-Goer
A friend of mine, the one who got me into the Allston show scene in the first place, is actually someone who doesn't even live in the city. He had lived here for a few months, and then returned to his home in the suburbs--Wakefield. When I first decided that I was going to be conducting interviews with people inside the scene, it seemed only right to get his perspective. Following are the questions I asked, and his responses.
What made you start going to shows? You come from the suburbs right? Yeah, I did. Ha. I mean I started coming go to Boston when I was like 11 years old for Dropkick Murphys and The Unseen, and I always kept going to shows. My first basement show here was a band called Neptune, and all it had on the website was an address for the show. It ended up being [name omitted], as soon as you walked in it was insane, so I began to actually dislike bigger shows that I used to love. And like, if a show's more than 8 bucks, I'd consider not even going because of the price.
How long have you been coming into Allston? Probably like 2 years. I mean I'd been to Harper's Ferry before I even knew that basement shows existed. But like, 2 or 3 years.
Do you feel it's easier to participate in the underground show scene as someone younger? What do you mean participate? I don't think it takes too much of an effort. Most of my friends are like more tuned in than I am, because they are around the people who are directly involved in shows more than I am. I think it has to do more with, like, I dunno, distance. A lot of people won't post their shit online, so you just have to look and find.
Do you feel there are any stigmas towards people from outside of the Allston scene coming in? Not really. I tend to include that I stayed in Allston for a while when I try to get to shows, and when I'm explaining my whereabouts. So I guess so, maybe that's just in my head though. I'm crazy.
What was the craziest thing that ever happened at a basement show? I got arrested. That was one of the craziest things. Also, at Neptune the band wanted the basement lights on, and people kept turning them off, and so [the band] kept turning them on. And someone just punched the light bulb so it wouldn't turn on, there was broken glass all over us. That was crazy. Also,punching holes in the walls during Japanther I think, at [name omitted]. We stored alcohol in the holes so we could go into the crowd. We came back a few weeks later, and the holes were boarded up so we don't know if they're still there. So if you go there, you should check it out.
What do you think is the biggest problem about the Allston show scene? I dunno, I think it's going really well. I think sometimes the venues are just not big enough. I'm surprised that [name omitted] got big name bands. There's not enough stoner metal played in basements.. And not enough electronic music. And I don't mean fucking Totally Michael.
What do you think is the best thing about the Allston show scene? I think it's great that it's way more than the punk scene. That it's unified over all. It's such a common ground. Like a week or so ago I met some-girl-I-know's new guy or something. And he mentioned The Needy Visions, or something. And we were able to talk about a lot of things because we have so many show stories in common. Things like that are great.
What is the most memorable show you've been to here? Probably Japanther. It was Japanther, Totally Michael, Ninjasonik, and Animal Hospital. And it was SO good. It was SO good. And it was like such a big crowd. People were all singing along. After Totally Michael we smoked a blunt in the basement, and all of a sudden we heard Hip-Hop, and we were all like Whatttt?, and then they did a Bad Brains cover. That was awesome. That was exact. I'm a big fan of hip hop and I hadn't heard that in a basement, yet. I just saw that Ninjasonik is playing with Clipse this weekend, how fucking awesome is that? How fucking awesome!? From basement to playing with Clipse. Japanther sings into a telephone, the whole thing was rowdy, first time I'd ever crowdsurfed, too. It was the first time I saw Animal Hospital; we all clapped and sat on the ground together. Everyone was very unified.
Who do you think is the band with the most potential currently? Why? I would say Skimask, but they don't--I dunno. I hope they make it, but they're gonna be big enough, I just feel like they're too much. Just too new for people. Mouth bass, [making the noises a bass would make with your mouth into a microphone], is the most terrific instrument I've ever laid ears on. The Needy Visions are obviously a front runner; they're great. They are definitely one of the best things around here going. Same with Skimask though. Big Digits has the potential to be humongous. They are so energetic. They appeal to people who like anything form dance punk to grimey ass rap. Southern Rap. It's beautiful. It's like Girl Talk in a basement. Like a fashion show.
If you could describe your Allston sub culture in 5 words, what would those words be? Loud, large, vicious, productive.
Is there anything else that you feel would be important to know for this interview, or interviews in the future?
You're doing great. You should ask questions if they come to you in your head. Overall I gave you about 90. Great job. Seriously. I'm rating you right now.
Photo Credit: Japanther's Myspace.