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[ OBIK: this was scanned in by Slaughter on 10th Avenue, who runs an awesome hotline server, called Three Legged Dog, that's bursting with wholesome hardcore goodness. Check it out ( L/P: hardcore / punk ). ]

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Since the two punk festivals that were organized by SADISTIC EXPLOITS in late '81, Philadelphia has had an alternative scene, completely independent of the big money clubs. There have been some hard times (some due to stupidly trashing inside halls), but the energy is always there. Some big shots attempted to monopolize the alternative gigs, which did not help the scene at all, but their names mean nothing around here any more.

After a rough summer that included a big bust at an outdoor gig (with AUTISTIC BEHAVIOR), an intense violent attack in a white ghetto (DK gig), and confrontations with Jah's soldiers in BAD BRAINS, a small group of active locals had a meeting to begin a Philly chapter of BYO. In the spirit of unity, we formed with the hope of finding a permanent hall, promoting the local scene and bands, doing gigs with bands from elsewhere, and to form networks with other punk organizations, e.g. BYO people in California, REAGAN YOUTH's projects, and whatever else is similarly active. Philly BYO is non-profit, non-hierarchical (yes, organization is possible without power) and has a wide variety of participating members. This includes people from local zines (Savave Pink, Die Young, Anarchy for Punks), and IJC radio (WKDU - Riot Show - soon to host Maximum Rock'n'Roll). Philly BYO recently had a video party (of Philly gigs), and put on its first show: November 28--Buff Hall (Camden, NJ--right next to Philly).

crib death

AGNOSTIC FRONT, from NYC, opened and went through an excellent set, showing much improvement and a positive/united attitude. Their energy and dedication suggest that this band will be around for a long time. Hopefully, they will.

They next two sets were from local bands who have recently formed. It was FLAG OF DEMOCRACY's first gig, and one of the earliest gigs with CRIB DEATH. They were well received and both show potential. CRIB DEATH has recently been responding to a bit of controversy over a song entitled "I Hate Girls". They feel misinterpreted and have since clarified that they "do not hate women, just girls." You can decide on your own conclusion.

It was predictably wild when Boston's SS DECONTROL roared through their highly energetic set. They were both positive and supportive when speaking between songs and had left an unforgettable mark with their first gig in this area. One of the highlights was when they were impersonating cops, complete with flashing lights.

minor threat

DC's MINOR THREAT played last, and needless to say, kept the energy up with their intense utra-thrash set. This was in spite of some moron who drove high speed on the street, and barely missed hitting a skateboarder, crashed into the front end of SSD's can and caused leg and head injuries to Ian (who was walking to SSD's van). Ian was in pain, but was quickly released from the nearby hospital. Their set was still fantastic, and included some impressive new material.

It was really sad that Ian and SSD had to go through all that shit. There were a few other incidents in this generally rough and junkie-plagued area. Fortunately a biker group, The Ghetto Riders, were on the same block, and were not only friendly, but had done a lot of things cooler than it would have been without them. They also got into the thrashing, in a positive way, and loved it. The local cops were well-behaved, unlike the notorious Philly cops.

It seems like a consensus that this gig was a true uplift. The punks from the four cities got along fine, as well as punks from Albany, North Jersey, and other regional scenes. This marked a turning point towards a new, forward beginning. Stay tuned--we'll keep you posted.

--Ronald Thatcher
Philly BYO
PO Box 40193
Philadelphia, PA 19106

PS There is at least one other band also using the name CRIB DEATH.

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