By Rob van Alstyne
By Zach McCormick
By Emily Eveland
By Jack Spencer
By Michael Madden
By Reed Fischer
By Emily Weiss
By Emily Weiss
Beloved local punkers the Quincy Punx took their name from the infamous "Next Stop Nowhere" episode of Jack Klugman's early-'80s TV series Quincy. On it, a stabbing in a rock club called Ground Zero alerts the famed M.E./detective to a dangerous new subculture, "punk rock." The show's bumbling characterization of punk music and ethics provoked hysteria among parents and hysterics among real-life punkers. A decade after the show ran, the Quincys emerged to lampoon (or is that embody?) the negative stereotypes popularized by the "punk" episodes of Quincy and CHiPS. With mid-'90s gems like "Dumpster Diving at the Abortion Clinic" and "Nuke Seattle," plus their statement of purpose, "Beer is God," the Quincy Punx found their way into the hearts of hardcore purists across North America.
In fact, the foursome are one of those bands whose reputation outside the Cities exceeds their local profile, partly because everyone here thinks they've split up. "We went on tour last fall, and some things didn't work out too well," admits Bob, the Quincys' grizzled guitarist. "Our bass player left after it was over, and we'd lost a lot of money on tour because of our booking agent. So we just needed to work. People assumed we'd broken up, partly because we never gave anyone a straight answer when they asked."
Now the band is back with a hot 'n' scuzzy new CD/CD-ROM, Nutso Smasho (Recess Records), which comes with a cool, Milk & Cheese-style comic book, some videos, and an instructional movie on how to make a beer funnel. (Free copies of the multimedia CD package will be available to the first 20 paid-ticket holders at both the band's all-ages and ID shows this Sunday.) The lyrics on Nutso's 21 ass-tight hardcore songs are surprisingly comprehensible, with lines such as "You're on a mission to get fucked-up" bodysurfing through a bottomless pit of buzz-guitar din.
It's this mess-thetic--and the fact that the Punx's suds intake easily makes Dillinger Four look straight-edge--that evokes hops-punk heroes Fear. So it's appropriate that Bob should now be pressing that out-of-print Sgt. Pepper's of beer-core albums, Have Another Beer With Fear, on his own label, I'll Be Dead in Hell Records. "Our drummer Mike was doing the label with me and he got drunk and called Lee [Ving, singer of Fear] on the phone one night and started talking to him. A few months later, we did it." Returning to head up what might be the Cities' most vital subgenre, these hardcore heroes are neither the monsters of Quincy nor the role models parents might prefer. But with a DIY-punk CD-ROM, they're certainly ahead of the curve.
Quincy Punx play two shows on Sunday, June 28, at the 7th Street Entry. The all-ages show has a door time of 4 p.m. and includes Video Nasty; the ID show opens at 9 p.m., and includes Stray Bullets. Both shows feature performances by the Subversives and the Degenerates. Call 338-8388 for more information.