Wednesday, July 22

Videos from Purgatory #12: Suicidal Tendencies - You Can't Bring Me Down

It may seem odd to includes this band in this series of videos of bands trapped in Electric Purgatory considering their long history and international success, but then again these guys truly seriously RAWK and the contribution of Guitarist Rocky George to them should not go ignored.

So many classic lines in this song...

Crazy? You wouldn't know crazy if Charles Manson was eating Fruit Loops on your Front Porch!

Can you say "Feel Like Shit"? Yeah, well I rather fell like shit than be Full of shit!

Oh, did I offend you? Oh I'm sorry, but maybe you needed to be offended and one more thing - FUCK YOU!

(Some of the guys in shades shown in the video standing behind the fence during the intro were members of the L.A. Black Rock Coalition Band - Backlash, whose singer was killed by a drunk driver on his way to one of their gigs, and event that paralleled one of their early songs "I Saw Your Mommy" which documented the hit-and-run killing of one of Mike Muir's Teachers in front of Venice High)

With this song "You Cant Bring me Down" ST make a point that is a common theme to many groups I've highlighted, the argument that they will not be denied despite the forces aligned against them. A lot of people might not be aware of what Suicidal Tendencies have gone through, starting with the fact that from early on the band was not only associated deeply with the burgeoning Skate-Punk movement but also with local gangs in Venice CA.

Not only was their a Suicidal Tendencies Band, there was also a Suicidal Tendencies Gang and exactly where one began and the other ended became so confused that for a fairly long period - much like their later contemporaries Body Count - the band was literally BANNED from performing in their own home town and lead singer Mike Muir was literally detained by Secret Service. (Hints of this are displayed in the "You Can't Bring me Down" video using simulated News Paper Headlines)

Despite their worldwide expansion and success, Suicidal Tendencies was banned from playing their hometown for nearly six years. Los Angeles city authorities had restricted the band from performing within the city limits. Because of the ban, Suicidal Tendencies was unable to schedule a show within a 400-mile radius of L.A., since the restriction frightened most area concert promoters. Finally, in April of 1991, Queensryche invited Suicidal Tendencies to open for them on their national arena tour, and the ban in L.A. was lifted.

You want to talk about being "Held Down by the Man" - that's it right there.

These guys clearly defied stereotypes with Mike's obvious "Cholo" attire on stage. He literally did dress like a "Gang banger", and trust me - they have a HUGE following in the L.A. Latino/Chicano community who felt their personal stories of adolescent and social repression deeply.

Gradually the band moved from their Hardcore/Punk Influences into becoming a Full-On Metal Band more akin to Anthrax than Black Flag. But still, these guys didn't exactly "fit right in" on Head Bangers Ball sandwiched between Slaughter and Winger.

And they always knew how to direct their biting wit - especially on this track about thieving Televangelists - "Send Me Your Money".


1 comment:

Anonymous said...

HUGE latino following? The suicidal gang was mostly blue collar white boys from venice and surrounding areas, yes there were latinos in the gang as well.