After seventeen years of being a “business guy” with varying degrees of autonomy running publishing companies, I recently had “retirement” thrust upon me. It’s provided an opportunity to look back on nearly two decades worth of patterns, decisions, realized dreams, and missed opportunities. A lot of things changed over the years, but one thing stayed consistent – my reliance on a certain strain of punk rock to get me through it all.
I won’t fake any gutterpunk credentials. I won’t tell you about the time I saw Family Slaughterer in an abandoned warehouse in Chicago. I won’t brag about the size of my Mohawk (though, at one point I did rock a fairly impressive devil lock). I won’t tell you about getting drunk or strung out over the course of Labor Day weekend in some ill-conceived Sid and Nancy cosplay.
If you want the more legit take on these matters, you can get them through my friends who have been there and done that, like Jim Ruland and Bill Gordon. I am but a humble faker in their shadows.
As Fat Mike says on one of the NOFX live albums – I’m just not that punk, okay? Hell, let’s be real, I’m not even as punk as the apologetic Blake Schwarzenbach on “Boxcar.” I’m a middle aged dude who got a Misfits mixtape as a seventh grader and somehow stumbled around that neighborhood on and off for the last thirty years, every now and again discovering old truths and new revelations via shitty three chord rock and roll being pumped out through distorted amplifiers while the earnest wailings of vocalists call out for attention.
Over the years, I’ve noticed that I’ve got an affinity for female fronted pop punk bands. Because I have more time now than I know what to do with it (and it’ll likely kill me), I’ve traced it back to sometime around 1995 when my friend Rachel gave me a mixtape that included Tilt’s “Unravel” and something primal clicked inside my music compartment.
I have no intention of making this a full genealogy lesson, but I’ll just point out that after discovering Tilt, it wasn’t long before I heard Sleater Kinney for the first time. (And here’s a quick digression that kinda/sorta makes me sound like a hipsterpunk, but also establishes (vainly) some street cred – my favorite SK albums in order are The Hot Rock, Call the Doctor, Dig Me Out, the debut EP, and then everything else—my point being that “the old stuff was better” though plenty of people might want to fight me with calling The Hot Rock part of the early oeuvre.) From SK I got into bands like Cadallaca, Bratmobile, Bikini Kill, etc.
In 2003 I grew enamored with the Distillers when I first heard Coral Fang. I will always associate the endless looping of that album with building a publishing company from the ground up.
Then, in 2004, a month after they played Madison and I opted NOT to go, I discovered the Butchies and their album Make Yr Life, which is pretty much a perfect pop punk album especially the cover of The Outfield’s “Your Love.”
And then…it was over. As happens, my daily musical catalog evolved in other directions, and I stopped seeking more bands in the same vein. Occasionally, I’d throw some of these artists on and be taken back to the magical place that’s a mix of awesome music and nostalgia, but that’d be as far as my re-exploration would go.
Then a bunch of years passed and now it’s 2017 and I’m retired and somehow I went down a Youtube rabbithole and ended up hearing Bad Cop/Bad Cop for the first time and oh my god am I ever glad I did because this scratches all the itches and is incurably contagious. There are three part harmonies, speed, snarl, sweet sweet distortion, and pounding drums. It is everything that should be and it is audio adrenaline that I love.
I feel like I’ve wasted 600 words just to get to the set up, and now that I’m here, I don’t know what else I have to add except that I really think you should buy this album if any of the gibberish I mentioned above resonates with you.
Standout tracks: Old Dogs, Nightmare, Cheers, Sugarcane, Like Seriously
TL/DR – Recently unemployed, semi-pathetic middle aged man has now discovered the fountain of youth in Bad Cop/Bad Cop’s album Not Sorry. But couldn’t just say that without trying to establish bullshit credibility by namedropping some other bands and people in an attempt to sound “cool.”
For a chance to get a copy of this album for free, leave a comment after watching the video, and we’ll hook you up in the format of your choice! We believe in sharing treasures when we find them.
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