So I finally read American Hardcore by Steven Blush. I've avoided this book for a while now. I've heard reviews where the author makes the claim that hardcore died around 1985, and since I've never really understood this thought process, I've kept my distance from this book. I finally picked it up, and to my surprise, it was a great read. Sure the author voices his opinion on when hardcore died, and peppers the book with a few lame stories, but overall, the history contained in this book is well documented. The chapters on Black Flag, Misfits, the early Dischord years, and the Boston Crew, were outstanding. While reading this book, I found myself with an insatiable appetite for all those early 80's hardcore bands. Bands that I hadn't listened to in years were suddenly finding their way into my daily playlist...repeatedly. Cro-Mags. Bad Brains. Articles of Faith. DYS. SSD. Negative Approach. I was obsessed with hardcore again, finding little to no time to listen to any Metal or Rock. The book also introduced me to some bands that I had never heard before, like Kraut, Die Kreuzen, and The Effigies.
While reading this book, I realized that I had never heard the Dischord compilation, Flex Your Head from 1982. I know, it is another one of those "I can't believe that I waited this long to hear this record" moments. Side one contains songs from bands that were the core of those early Dischord years, Teen Idles, S.O.A., Minor Threat, Government Issue, and Youth Brigade. Classic stuff. Side two has a bunch of bands that I've never heard before. I was introduced to Red C through Ceremony's cover of Pressure's On, and Red Handed did a cover of Void's My Rules. Both bands do some pretty good songs on this comp. I really like the Artificial Peace songs on here as well...I'll need to search Soulseek for more of their stuff. I'm glad to finally have this classic in my collection.