Hello, I’m David, I live in Belgium and play guitar in Dear Hearts (Melodic punkrock, think Social Distortion, Misfits) and Lewis (indie/punkrock, think Lucero, The Hold Steady, Against me).
I’m obsessed with music and listen to a lot of different stuff ranging from hardcore to old punkrock, from indie to hardrock. The following 3 records got me into different subgenres of ‘hard’ music.
Alice Cooper: The Beast of A.C.
When I was 10 years old my father bought the cd-box ‘top hits of 1989’. On that disc I first heard ‘Poison’ by Alice Cooper. Boy, that riff, I was instantly hooked on the whole Alice Cooper phenomenon. The horror image, the make-up…I dragged my parents to the store and instead of buying me stupid toys I wanted to own each and every Alice Cooper record ever made, I threw away all my old t-shirts and from then till now I have been wearing band shirts all the time. So I discovered hardrock music through him… today I still consider AC to be my all-time hero. Especially the old glam stuff when Alice Cooper was still a ‘band’ is crucial and influenced a lot of punk bands to come. Even Hank Von Helvete (Turbonegro) stole their whole image. Don’t let his 80’s hardrock or 90’s metal fool you (I love those albums as well), their early 70’s stuff (Love it to death, Killer, School’s out and Billion dollar babies) are unbelievable.
Other kids got into the whole hardrock thing through the popular bands back then like ‘Guns n’ roses’ or ‘Iron Maiden’. I couldn’t relate to both bands and I didn’t like the maiden sound at all. Later on I got into other similar bands like Mötley Crüe (through the ‘decade of decadence’ compilation that my aunt gave me) and of course the almighty Kiss as well. That started my obsession with ‘hard’ music. Last year I decided to get an old school Alice hand tattoo.
Biohazard: Urban Discipline
I could’ve named Machine Head’s ‘Burn my eyes’ or Life of Agony’s ‘River Runs Red’ instead of this one, but Biohazard came first. That band brought many boys and girls of our generation into the hardcore scene. I think ‘Urban discipline’ is one of my most played records. The energy the band presented, the attitude, the crowd that was going berserk on Dynamo 93, the video clips…it’s all engraved in my memories.
Lot’s of people gave up on Biohazard after Bobby Hambel left and sure it took out a lot of the mojo/magic but I kept listening and loving their albums.
Through their thank you lists in their booklet I discovered bands like Madball, The Spudmonsters, Sick of it all, Downset, etc…. I discovered a whole new world.
I’m still pissed I missed a legendary show (a bootleg live cd was made out of that one) at ‘De Brielpoort’, Deinze (Belgium) with Downset on one of their first Euro tours.
Of course there’s a million other (older) hardcore records that I could’ve mentioned that I worship but this is the one that got me into it. Funny thing that they were labelled sell-outs back in the day because they were on major labels and drew big crowds and now everybody wants to sound like them. Lot’s of Bio influence in the newer, younger hardcore bands. I’m not digging the Billybio thing though, the bandname, image and Janet Jackson headset mic aren’t my thing 😊. But major props to Billy for staying true to this genre.
Social Distortion: White Light, White Heat, White Trash
The year was 1996. I read Onno Cro-mag’s review of ‘White light, white heat, white trash’ in ‘Aardschok’ (popular dutch heavy music magazine) and the interview with Mike Ness. It got my attention, like all albums with big scores that Onno (RIP) was writing about.
My buddy bought the album and was telling me to listen to it. I heard ‘When the angels sing’ and it was the best thing I’ve ever laid ears on. I taped the record immediately and listened to it non-stop. Back then I was into much heavier music, but Social Distortion was thé bomb. Mike Ness looked like the coolest fucker ever, the tattoos, that voice, the sound of the album, his lyrics. Social D. became my favourite punk band and ‘White Light…’ is my number 1 album of all time. I still get goosebumps when ‘Dear lover’ gets into its first chords and when the chorus of ‘untitled’ blasts through my speakers. I started listening to all sorts of punk bands and got into a different genre. I’ve been in 3 bands and every time we went to record our stuff in the studio I gave the engineer a copy of ‘White Light…’ cuz I wanted to sound exactly like it. It never worked out haha.