Music News

Only Crime

For decades, mild-mannered Bill Stevenson has been twiddling the knobs for punk-n-ska acts like Less Than Jake and Lagwagon at his Fort Collins compound, his "Drum Ogre" alter ego held secret by his bandmates in Black Flag, the Descendants and All. Recently, Converge guitarist Aaron Dalbec and singer Russ Rankin from Good Riddance called the timekeeper out of retirement. Along with brothers Zach and Doni Blair (Armstrong/Hagfish), these hardcore super-villains threaten society with their Fugazi-like experiments. Their heavy artillery is enhanced by Rankin's precision pop-punk vocal guidance system, and the Blair brothers operate with a thundering, rattling attack so unified that they almost seem, well, related or something. At first the method takes on a deceptively comforting familiarity, which makes the underlying art-core all the more diabolical. The act's second release, Virulence, solidifies its members' resolve to stay the course. Poised to take on arch-enemies such as the Minutemen and Nomeansno, these super-groupers vow to use their powers only for evil.
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Rick Skidmore