Friday, March 30, 2007
Ahhh...this one brings back some memories. In an age before things like "metalcore" or "mathcore" there was that gnarled up cousin of punk and metal simply known as hardcore. Add a little bit of social awareness, a hatred of alcohol/drugs, and an uncannily bad fashion sense and the Straight Edge Hardcore subculture-within-a- subculture was born. Get your band together, write some short, fast songs, get a guy with a shaved head to yell some catch-phrases over it all, and there ya go. Don't forget your Sharpie pens so every band member can scribble giant X's on their hands for the live shows.
While there were some pretty great Straight Edge hardcore bands (none more mighty than Project X or Gorilla biscuits, methinks) comes this joke band that satirizes every hardcore, posi-core, sXe band that ever existed up to 1988. The really funny thing is that Crucial Youth outplay every one of those bands that they are making fun of...beating them at their own game. "The Posi-Machine" is solid hardcore with absolutely hilarious lyrics promoting dental hygiene, good grades, and condemming (beyond the drugs and drinking) acts of littering, masturbation, and profanity. If you're not already familiar with the old-school sXe mentality, then you may not understand the humor in lyrics like this sample from the crucial-anthem "Be Like Me And Mr. T"... "I pity the fool who drinks alcohol. I pity the fool who takes Tylenol. I pity the fool who mixes 'ludes and gin. They just end up as Karen Ann Quinlin. Be like Me and Mr. T. Drug free!" Hahahahaha...Genius! Or should i say XgeniusX ...?
I was introduced to this band through an old friend of mine when we were both into skateboarding. He would blast Warzone, Youth Of Today, and Minor Threat when we had curb sessions and was pretty seriously involved in being straight-edge. He was overcome with enthusiasm when he discovered Crucial Youth and we would listen to it every chance he'd get. The funny thing is, he didn't know Crucial Youth was a joke...and he often said things to me like "This band doesn't even tolerate swearing...they're the MOST positive band EVER!" hahahahahaha