off, do you "708" clowns actually think you can take
on the mighty "630" DuPage Crew?
Ricky: 630 DuPage
Crew is strong, there is no doubt of this for we do not have (no
pun intended) strength in numbers....but we have heart and that's
all that really matters isn't it Ryan? I believe that we should
not fight each other but stick together....for if we join as one
then we will be invincible. Almost like Wu-Tang Sword style if
used correctly. Another thing I'd like to add, even though I had
no part in it, is that Tim was able to get the beloved DuPage
County sign away from its keepers with very little help. Of course
it was eventually reclaimed at the Chicago Hardcore Fest but it
took all the Strength In Numbers crew to get it away from 4 "708
Mike: In the
words of Raybeez, "united we stand divided we fall you gotta
keep the faith." I definitely think we could use some strength
in numbers. Hahaha.
I've talked to you before about the "sociological" side
of the hardcore scene. Explain to the readers some of your insights
and thoughts on this topic.
right now I'm in the process of finishing my first social research
project for my Soc. major and guess what--it's a study of the
hardcore scene in Chicago and possibly the greater Chicagoland
area. Basically, here's one of my hypotheses. If people are "hardcore"
then they will be taking an active role in what happens around
them socially and politically; more specifically, they will be
fighting unjustified authority and the unfair power structures
that capitalism sets up in general (levels of resistance to the
status quo is especially interesting--what will facilitate a real
social movement or possibly social revolution? Could it have something
to do with the music?). I'm also interested in looking at the
healthiness of the hardcore community; more specifically, is there
even a real hardcore community? For example, someone I interviewed
at Chi-fest said, "hardcore is less like a network of friends
and more like a mini capitalist economy." Just think of all
the merchandise tables and money crossing hands at these types
of shows (note especially the coldness of certain interactions
at shows especially those that deal with money). At the very least
this seems antithetical to what a "real" hardcore scene/community
should be about. Anyway, I just finished collecting a shit load
of data at the fest and here's a rundown of some of the insights
I've gathered so far. Unfortunately, women and minorities are
very poorly represented. Women didn't even make up a third of
the audience and I could count the minorities on my fingers -
this scene is a white boy's club. Along this line, Martin's new
band Limp Wrist got the approval of many but you could see that
there was also just as many who were uncomfortable with the idea
of homo-core. Unfortunately, similar to the earlier line about
mini-capitalism, a subculture becomes a miniature of mass culture--sexism,
racism, and homophobia seem to permeate many social circles even
ones that claim to be against these problems. Ending on a more
positive note, I was lucky enough to find a married couple at
the show who came to see the husband's brother play in one of
the bands. The wife, a 44 year old, and the husband, a 45 year
old, said that this was their first hardcore show and had these
two insights, "The people here are extremely nice and accepting
even though I look obviously out of place," and, "I
now realize that these [hardcore shows] are not threats but opportunities."
There must be something special about hardcore that prompts this
kind of reaction and on this note it's important that those of
us who feel committed or a part of the hardcore community to keep
this "specialness" alive. Maybe a zine would like to
print some of my finished write-up on hardcore? If anyone has
questions, comments, or vicious attacks for me and/or my research
please email me at email@example.com.
would be your words of advice to someone just getting into hardcore?
out for those DuPage kids, theyre weird.
Mike: The scene/community
is only as good as you make it. If you don't like the games that
are being played make up new ones and play them passionately.
do you think makes the hardcore scene seem so attractive to newcomers
and vice versa?
Ricky: I think
cause it's more fun than other scenes. That's what I think, that's
what attracted me. I used to go to tons of punk shows...and it
was cool....but it wasn't as friendly as when I started hanging
out in the hardcore scene. I know people are going to disagree
with that but I don't think you can really escape any jags in
a scene. I truthfully think that DuPage County has the best scene.
I think the DuPage is the epitome of a hardcore scene, like all
the songs you here about making a scene better. Well, I think
that what they sing about striving for is already going on in
the DuPage scene. A scene that isn't critical and is truly about
unity and having fun is very attractive. It just makes sense that
someone would want to be a part of that.
Mike: The attraction
to the scene is felt because its a very fluid social structure;
in other words, unlike every other institution humans deal with,
the hardcore scene allows for people to be themselves. Furthermore,
creativity and cooperation are encouraged. This is in contrast
to the undemocratic, practically totalitarian structures that
most humans have to live in on a day to day basis--hardcore is
a place where peoples talents can be brought to fruition in the
anarchist sense. Profit and control are not goals; instead, hardcore
is about doing what is fun and expressing all that a person has
to offer--in most senses this is harder work than taking a crappy
job in the capitalist economy. Possibly, it's the amount of work
that one has to put into this scene that's also a turn off. Most
of hardcores ideals run in direct opposite to what mainstream
culture's ideals are--some people are just not up to living a
life where you will always have to be swimming against an ever
your opinion, why do people leave the hardcore scene that they
were so "dedicated" too at one time?
Ricky: I think
it's because they grow out of it. Sometimes things don't seem
as important as they used to. And instead of trying to stay in
something that they aren't into anymore they just move on.
Mike: This relates
to my answer of the previous question. The hardcore ideals are
lofty and in opposition to those presented by most other mass
forms of media. Eventually, a person must choose a set of life
paths and try some of them; if this means leaving the hardcore
scene that's fine--it's just a process of maturation. Hardcore
is for some people but maybe not for others. Maybe people leave
because of the doublespeak that goes on in hardcore. For example,
"We hate capitalism but buy our stuff. We hate sexism but
look at the hot chick. We hate racism but were too uncomfortable
to talk to someone of a different color at a show. We hate homophobia
you fag. We're pacifist but beat the crap out of that guy in the
pit." I think you get my drift. At the very least, people
get tired of this kind of hypocrisy and if they wanted it they
could go listen to any politician, CEO, news person, or boss/coworker
and hardcore no longer feels special for those who can perceive
it's hypocrisy--it's hard work to be a part of this kind of subculture.
Nevertheless, the fun outweighs the effort that I put into it
and that's why I won't be leaving for a long time.
you, is hardcore more of a music genre, a way of thinking and
viewing life, or a compromise of both?
Ricky: I'd have
to say that it's a compromise of both. Although a way of thinking
and viewing life can be expressed through any style of music.
I think that the way of thinking brought about the style of music
because who ever it was wasn't with the way the music was portraying
the idea. Therefore that made it match the intensity and energy
of the emotion that went with the way they thought of things and
how they felt on life.
Mike: If I haven't
made it obvious already--hardcore is a lifestyle as well as a
music. The music describes the lifestyle to an extant as does
the lifestyle dictate what the music is about. Constantly in the
act of creation--this is the main purpose of hardcore in my mind--art
creates life; life creates art. This transaction between music
and life is what makes hardcore vital to me. Of course, I am many
other things though and have many other interests; still, hardcore
can provide a framework or background (possibly a coherence) that
brings most aspects of my life together.
in the future for Frontside?
Ricky: We plan
on doing a tour in the summer out east, probably for about a week.
It hasn't been confirmed yet where exactly. We know we have a
definite show in Rochester, NY so we're trying to build it around
that. We have a lot of songs that are going out on compilations;
two songs on Midwest Hardcore comp and one on the Sinister Label
Chicago Comp. I think 3 on a DePaul benefit comp for rape prevention.
That one is going to be a limited pressing of I think like 500
CDs, I'm not sure though. We're going to keep on rock and
rollin. Play as many shows as we can and take over the world.
When Frontside is king, Ryan you will be duke of zines. You can
hold me to that too.
you ever in the Pen 15 club?
Ricky: You mean
the very prestigious Pen 15 country club? I often play golf there
with Mike and Bob Hope....ahh Pen 15....lots of old people....you
know I almost was but I think I figured it out before the kid,
who ever it was, put it on my hand.
Mike: Where do
I sign up?? I love elite clubs(note sarcasm).
will Frontside play an acoustic set for a first grade class in
an elementary school?
we release our double live album and go on tour wearing are old
make-up and platform boots.
Mike: When we
travel to the underworld and steal all of Satan's mystical powers.
for more info on Frontside please visit: frontside