Sunday, December 21, 2008

Darkness

Once I was drunk at a bar in Oakland. I was sitting with a friend and the subject of the single greatest American punk album came up. I said without hesitation that it was Poison Idea's Feel The Darkness. I went on to say that it was not a matter of opinion but rather a universal truth. He scoffed at this notion. "Have you ever heard it?" I asked. He hadn't. At that point some random punker walked past our table, I stopped the guy and asked, "Hey, dude, what is the greatest American made punk album ?" Without so much as a blink he answered, "I'm going to have to say Feel The Darkness by Poison Idea." A grin stretched across my face, being right never felt so right. So there it is, a cold hard factoid: Feel The Darkness is the best American Punk album ever.

52 comments:

ido said...

Very cool story. Downloading this right now and looking forward to it!

Slobodan Burgher said...

i agree

Howie said...

They were the greatest USHC band ever.. This and "Kings Of Punk" get my blood boiling still to this day.."War All The Time" ain't no slouch, either.

I wholeheartedly agree.

cdb said...

I dunno, it's probably Blood Guts and Pussy. But I'll admit I haven't heard Feel the Darkness. Lemme get back to you.

Santasect said...

Shit yeah. Coincidentally just broke this out the other day, hardcore and fucking heavy without any of the tedium that has come out of the rape-marriage of metal and "hardcore" for the past decade plus.

Anonymous said...

i have to agree with this being the best US punk album for sure. it's so solid the whole way through - great production, too.
even pantera could not fuck it up - their cover of 'the badge' from the crow soundtrack was one of the few good things on the jukebox of a bar i worked at 10+ years ago.
i think just about every band that came through pittsburgh - and some of our own bands - covered 'just to get away' about 3-4 years ago.
killer.
-dan morgan

bobby evil brown said...

You are absolutley correct on this one,I remember when it came out,it was fucking epic,my 2nd favorite is War all the time.

Batguano said...

Well, possibly. It is way the hell up there, that's for sure.

Aesop said...

Very excited for ido and cdb, who have yet to feel this one.

vugelnox said...

For a split second I didn't see 'American' in there and was about to object by positing that Hear Nothing See Nothing Say Nothing was in fact the inarguable greatest slab of punk rock ever laid down.

As fucking great as this album is I have a difficult time saying this eclipses the might of the first Bad Brains LP. You can make a powerful argument for that being #1 however Poison Idea certainly ranks high on the list.

Totally unrelated but last night I braved unsavory road conditions and winter weather to finally be able to see the mighty Keelhaul live. Their drummer Will ranks right up there with Macabre's Dennis the Menace for me. Ludicrously talented individual. What a killer live band too!

Aesop said...

When you say the Bad Brains first LP do you mean the ROIR tape or "Rock For Light?" and "Hear Nothing See Nothing..." is perhaps the best record ever and maybe even the best thing ever.

Anonymous said...

i was @ a party a few ago & stepped out w/ the smokers... they started talking 'bout music & some chick mentions e-town concrete... "umm, e-town?", "they suck." i said. a few years ago i was in line @ a record store & some douche in front of me @ the register is holding an e-town disc & say's all excited, "man, it's an enhanced cd!" "what? it smells like shit too?", i asked him. they cashier laughed, douche regretfully did not...

anyways @ the party, after i slagged e-town & related the enhanced disc story the chick all snotty asks what do i listen to. "80's hardcore mostly, you know, poison idea?", i answered. her & the other dickweeds had no clue...

here's hoping their cancer is worse than mine...

-jeff

Aesop said...

I don't even know what an E Town Concrete is.

tom said...

It's hands down the greatest American punk LP. RIP Pig.

Tom said...

And if we're talking about Bad Brains, I Against I is so far ahead of its time, I know most of the kudos goes to ROIR and Rock For Light but I Against I is some next level shit.

Anonymous said...

its a pill that gives worms to ex-girlfriends

cjejons said...

When you're right, you're right. Thanks for this.

vugelnox said...

the ROIR tape. Rock for Light is good too but the material on that tape knocks me dead every time.

E-Town Concrete are shitty hardcore mixed with rap vocals. I saw them once opening for the (infinitely) better Candiria. They were a sorry bunch but Candiria made up for it. In their prime before the bus accident they were truly one of the greatest live acts ever.

Shelby Cobras said...

I like how in the liner notes of this one, in the band photo, Pig Champion is so huge that he's holding a 40 but it looks like a Snapple. Dude is LARGE.

big boy said...

2 listens to this yesterday gave me the strength to go on living.

Aesop said...

Here's the Bad Brains rundown for me and then we can continue to discuss the merits of Poison Idea...

ROIR tape>Rock For Light>I against I

Aesop said...

Oh, and today is the shortest day of the year, so everyone enjoy some real darkness.

big boy said...

Pagan.

chrisc said...

i don't know if this is the best american hardcore album,but it's definitely a really,really great album (hardcore or any other genre).

bobby evil brown said...

Can any one post the pix from the inside of the album or cd? thanx

Greg said...

This is one of my favorite albums of any genre. Loads of hate, brutality, and some of the sickest leads ever put to tape. Track down the Maximum Rock and Roll interview they did for the album's release. It's fuckin' hilarious...

Ambassador Magma said...

I come for the metal... but I stay for the punk.

I never really listened to that much punk except for local bands in Albuquerque and Tucson growing up. But everything that's piqued my curiosity on here has made me like punk music, so I'm really excited to hear this!

I have to ask... why are they shooting Alice Cooper? They don't shoot Coopers, do they?

Daniel Menche said...

As a Portland native who suckled on the nipples of Poison Idea early shows I can eagerly agree that Poison Idea is the tippy-top of the list for best USA hardcore. Thanks Aesop for the download...my Itunes is now melting the snow away.

I'm working on the Poison Idea Wax Museum now. Hopefully to open in early 2009. I still need another truckload of wax to finish the life size Pig Champion figurine. Finally a tourist attraction that PDX can be proud of!

Aesop said...

Not Alice Cooper, it's Tiny Tim.

Anonymous said...

Story is too perfect... he must have overheard your conversation?

Doug said...

it pretty much comes down to anyone who doesn't like poison idea doesn't like awesome shit, period.

Devil Dick said...

hmmmm,,,

greatest ever???

not SO sure 'bout that but it IS a GOOD 1...

Wooderson said...

I love this album! Plenty of good times associated with it.

Skull of a Moose said...

my friend nick and i once drove 3000 miles to pick up a kick drum he forgot and left behind after the last show of a tour (literally the only time we ever forgot to dummy check the van), i remember blasting this shit on repeat at fucking catastrophic volumes to stay awake somewhere in "fly-over" country and headbanging like a nut every time "just to get away" came on.

for what its worth this place inspired me to start my own mp3 blog. stop by if you feel like it.

-moose/ skull of a moose

Anonymous said...

That is a made up story when I was in highschool I was big into the punk scene and never heard of them...

I however evolved into metal. The album you posted is pretty awesome though.

Aesop said...

Cool, Moose Skull Guy, I will check it out.

Anonymous said...

Cool

Phantom Hugger said...

One of the only records I had to buy twice because the first one was so worn, beaten up, and spilled on that it was nearly inaudible.

No I have a version for my Zune, Dude!

ifdead said...

Fuck yes.

Roger Camden said...

Oh god.
The production!
The tunes!

No shit, this is a very good record.

How have I never heard of this?

wurm said...

tied for number one with the
Cro-Mags Age of quarrel

Anonymous said...

Hands down one of the greatest records ever....
This release will be given the deluxe treatment in 2009. Remastered, bonus tracks extensive liner notes etc. In double disc format for CD and (limited) double vinyl in gatefold sleeve..

Matt said...

I'm sad to say that although I was really into punk rock in high school I somehow had never heard of this until now. I'm not familliar enough with it yet to call it the "best American Punk album ever," (and I'm not sure if anything can top Black Flag for me personally) but I'll be damned if this doesn't at least achieve a rating of "fucking great" from me personally. "Death of an Idiot Blues" is probably my favorite song so far. Thanks for sharing, as always!

Matt said...

I just realized I used the phrase "me personally" way too much in my above comment. Department of Redundancy Department!

s. said...

Only a gutless fool would dare slag the mighty Poison Idea. Wrapped in a fur, trapped in a cancer, the swansong's over for the littlest dancer is still among the badassest lyrics I've ever heard. That said, I'll have to admit I would rank My war and Age of quarrel a smidge higher.

Poison Idea had a sense of humor too, even aside from claiming their lone influence was the destructively useless nimrod Darby Crash. I saw them in Oslo a few years ago and they stumbled through a quarter of a cover of Fuel for hatred, which was Satyricon plagiarizing Turbonegro plagiarizing Poison Idea. Rack that shit up as a dollar display of postmodernism.

The Official bootleg double seven inch has a better version of Plastic bomb with beefier leads and a manlier production, it also features a fantastic cover of Jimmy Cliff's Harder they come which never comes close to sounding like a joke at all. Fuckin' priceless.

Aesop said...

Steve Hansford the Slayer Hippy has been arrested in Portland for robbing pharmacies. He was on a bunch of crimestopper PSAs on local TV and most people that knew him knew it was him. I guess maybe someone ratted him off for the reward. He's looking at 7-15 years. Fuck.

mephet'ran said...

bringing this album to my attention is appreciated, but it's in a pretty unwieldy format (m4a). thx anyway.

Patrick W said...

Well, duh! Best Hardcore record too, despite what any ponce claiming "Break Down the Walls" or any other such nonsense might have to say.

haizman_brain said...

Deep Sleep...Welcome To Krell...Nation of Finks...I'm not sure how people can rank the Cro-Mags album ahead of this. I still love the Age of Quarrel, and got to see them play on that tour in Portland in '86 (w/ GBH and the Accused), but I would rank FTD higher because it covers a wider breath of musical tempos and style (HC to Punk to Rawk, etc...). AND, no one could blow fire or pick a fight with the crowd like Jerry A did.

genericblogname said...

i was skeptical when you said "the best" but when i played that first track my mouth opened swear to god

corymogk said...

This is a great album. I saw them in Toronto on the tour. Jerry sliced his neck to shoot blood on the crowd and then did the human blowtorch thing and set the roof of the club on fire - intense!

Punk RocknRoll said...

Great record by an even greater band but this isn't my favorite Poison Idea LP but it's up there. One of the handful of bands who have yet to make an LP I don't fucking love. RIP Pig You are greatly missed