Finally! Somebody spoke out against the D.C. punk nazis (“In on the Killjoy,” 10/17)! It only took 20 fucking years for someone to rise above the epidemic ass-kissing! Ian MacKaye is Hitler, and Mark Jenkins is Albert Speer. I’m surprised that Michael Little isn’t lynched already. Perhaps he is “banned in D.C.”? He’s my hero! The times must be a-changin’ if the Washington City Paper allowed that article to be published. Is Mark Jenkins losing control of his tight little punkgeist empire? So tight! I so wanted to write that article anytime between 1984 and 1995, when I lived in D.C. (and played guitar in a neo-prog-rock band called Cathedralcan you imagine?!). Thank you, Michael Little, for being so boldly honest.
I had a history teacher who tried to teach us about politics through a simple political spectrum. Basically, he drew a circle. Twelve o’clock is moderate. Right to 3 o’clock is conservative. Left to 9 o’clock is liberal. Extreme conservatives (reactionaries) and extreme liberals (radicals) meet at 6 o’clock. It’s where people like the preachers in Fugazi and Jerry Falwell meet and fuck each other.
Just to put this in perspective: Even Bono from U2 knew enough to stop taking himself seriously and became an ironic rock star. You know that rock ‘n’ roll is dead when the kids start playing parents…and then telling on their parents. It’s no different from the Hitler Youth movement.
If rock critics are just frustrated musicians, then I guess D.C. “rockers” are just frustrated politicians or preachers. Even Bad Brains were preachy. What’s up with that? You know how you can tell that D.C. is not a rock ‘n’ roll town? Just follow any rocker who lives there. Where does he or she go for rock ‘n’ roll? Baltimore!
Then I think about bands that I like that aren’t about rebelling against your parents: progressive bands such as Yes and early Genesis. They are not preachy, either. Of course, they combine rock with jazz, classical, experimentalso it’s a different thing. But they are never in your face. They just present their thing and let you judge. It’s more about beauty than balls to the wall. There’s a place for that. It’s mature without being parental. It’s more religious than rebellious, but in the sense of rapture, not preaching hellfire. I’ll never forget when Mark Jenkins reviewed Marillion’s 1994 concept album Brave. He basically said it was stupid, because it was prog and not punk, and that concept albums are dumb; he refused to even listen to it! It was the most closed-minded, anally retentive attitude I had ever seen in a highly circulated publication.
This world is totally fugazi, dude. Let’s go knock some beers out of some ice-cream-eatin’ motherfucker’s hand!
Angel lives! (Isn’t Punky Meadows a hairdresser in McLean, Va.?)
New York, N.Y.