The unifying theme of this play is disobedience. That, and the fact that our friend Quigs is responsible for turning me onto both of the items herein. Act One is a band from New Jersey. Act Two is a candidate for my personal theme song.
Disobey is a band from Hillsborough, New Jersey. Not long ago they released their debut EP, Human Suffering In Five Movements. You might get a clue about the music from the band’s name, not only because it conjures up images of anarchic punks but also because of that “Dis-” prefix. It harkens back to that seminal hardcore crust/punk band Discharge, whose drum technique gave rise to the “D-beat” label and whose music inspired a horde of musical offspring, including Disfear, Disaccord, Disclose, and Discard.
Disobey sound like a pack of starving Dobermans unleashed with a mess of hamburger piled up about 20 yards in front of them. They get there in a hurry (all 6 tracks on the EP hit the finish line about 11 minutes after the start), and getting in their way is really not a good idea.
But don’t let my metaphor mislead you — the music itself is not balls-out racing. The instrumental intro track is a sludgy, heavy, black-as-night crawl, and the songs that follow are mainly mid-paced crushers. And I do mean crushers.
Packing a bottomless bass tone and max-distortion riffing, Disobey lay down the heavy grind, while twisting the speed dial slightly up or down to keep you off balance. With all the weight up front, the hoarse blast of the vocals fights to come through in the mix, but they’re sufficiently audible to give the music an enhanced aura of unhinged ferocity.
Disobey have a Bandcamp page that features three movements of human suffering. Check it out:
Disobedience encompasses more than a “fuck your rules” attitude. It can also be something as simple as refusing to grow up, even when you’re already fully grown.
I know something about that kind of disobedience. I have a feeling many of you do, too. Maybe it’s a common trait of the genus metalhead.
You get older, and as the years pass you take on more and more responsibilities, whether you want to or not, because life never asks your permission before loading you up with them — it just continues dropping rocks in your backpack and draping tow chains around your neck. And you bear up as best you can. You do your schoolwork, you do your job, you take care of your family and your friends, you take care of yourself when time permits, and you have your fun where you find it (hopefully in non-destructive ways).
But none of that means you have to grow up! Anyone tells you different, just ignore their tight-sphincter asses and hold fast to whatever sense of wide-eyed wonder and immature playfulness you’ve still got, no matter how absurd it may sometimes seem. Remember, age is what happens involuntarily to your body, but your mind is all yours to control, right up until you lose it.
Well, that’s my theory at least. Quigs seems to know that; he sent me this video because it apparently reminded him of me. I actually think I’m better looking than Tom Waits.
And here’s The Ramones covering the same song on American TV in 1995. I think I’m better-looking than Joey Ramone, too, but I sure do miss The Ramones.