Are you sick of being responsible? Does it annoy you to have to follow rules or be pro-social? Do you like basements? Well, if you are a goofy, degenerate weirdo who doesn't quite fit in anywhere else, you might consider our city's DIY hardcore/punk shows.Your underlying anger problems can be brought out to their fullest potential (in a positive way). These are my recommendations for great local and national bands that don't play five-minute (marathon!) songs or remind you about drink specials. General rule of thumb: If you have five bucks and can show up by 9 pm., then it's go time in the pit. One, Two, Fuck You!
[Disclosure: The author of this article is in bands, some of which will be playing some the following shows. But the author of this article is in five local punk bands, so that is kind of an inevitability. It does not influence the choosing of these shows.]
Friday, April 5 @ CBGB, 9 p.m., $5: Useless Eaters, Legendary Wings, Rat Heart Seth Sutton/Dookie Jones of Life Trap/Vile Nation/Get a Life fame will be bringing his "Thin Lizzy doing contemporary, catchy as fuck, garage rock" style band to one of the south side's oldest dive bars. Michigan's Legendary Wings will be coming through as well. Legendary Wings are fucking punk, in the best sense possible. If you like the Hives or Radio Birdman, then don't stand outside chain smoking instead of catching the set. Opening up will be Belleville's Rat Heart with a fast, abrasive interpretation of original era punk rock. It will be a fun night to get in a tiny space and jump around like a complete idiot.
Wednesday, April 10 @ Lemp Arts Center, 8 p.m., $5: La Armada, Better Days, Resolute, & White Fire This show is going to be interesting, since it seems more suitable for the Fubar lounge, given the loud/fast and/or heavy nature of some of these bands. Local label/punk HQ Encapsulated Records is putting on this event, showcasing a couple bands on their roster. La Armada's fast, sporadic hardcore from the Windy City's trashiest alleyways will knock your rocks off. Resolute's brand of No Warning-esque hardcore might be the most interesting to see in the context of a community art space, known for hosting Noisefest and much less "tuff" acts on the regular. White Fire will break the gate open with its riff wizardry at the beginning of the show. No booze, no assholes, all ages.
Saturday, April 13 @ Fubar, 8 p.m., $8: Black Ice, Another Mistake, Can We Win, & Perfect People Here's a Saturday night event that's a perfect fit for the Fubar Lounge. A mean, motherfucking moshtastic hardcore show that will probably take a total of two hours. Iowa's Black Ice's attempt at the whole Merauder sound, combined with Another Mistake's take on early-era Bridge 9 Records classics (American Nightmare, Panic, Carry On) will be worth your touring band dollar alone. But these bands are making the trek through to see their pals in Can We Win, as the band is winding down to an end. This will be CWW's second to last show, but not to bassist Drew Maxey's chagrin, since the band he fronts (still functioning) will be opening up and ending the calm before the storm.
Saturday, April 20 @ Apop Records, 12 p.m., FREE: Raw Record Store Day Show Apop Records is hosting their annual free beer and BBQ punk rock shindig on the holiest of numerical bad weed joke days. With over ten bands playing, you can get nice and blacked out on Cherokee Street and still be in bed by 10:00...if your bed is the gutter and you're sleeping with CITY BABY, that is! The line-up for this, (I repeat) FREE show is as follows: 12:00 Wax Fruit 12:45 NRML PPL 1:30 Braining 2:15 Bad Dates 3:00 Grand Inquisitor 3:30 Redeemer 4:00 Trauma Harness 4:30 Brainstems 5:15 Union Electric 6:00 Ou Où 6:45 Lumpy and The Dumpers 7:30 Black James 8:15 Shaved Women 8:45 Broken Prayer
Tuesday, April 23 @ Fubar, 8 p.m., $12: Reagan Youth, The Pencildicks, Stinkbomb, Jay Brook Lip and the Terrible Twos Extree, extree read all about it! Legendary NYHC band Reagan Youth finally makes a reunion stop in St. Louis. It's safe to say that this would be a good nostalgia-based gamble for your hard earned nightlife money. There are a million openers. There will be a bunch of old and young punk stereotypes alike, as there are at any old guy band show. Stage dive til you puke and teach the green and jaded how to do'er to'er.
Wednesday, April 24 @ The Heavy Anchor, 9pm, $7: Wax Idols, TV Ghost, Autonomy, & Trauma Harness This would be a great show to have a nervous breakdown at. All of the bands are within the realm of creepy-poppy hybrid. They all have killer, catchy-as-all-hell bass lines. This is going to be any fan of post punk's dream/nightmare event. Plus, there are three out of towners on this show. Get these relatively newer bands some fucking gas so they can keep coming back!
Thursday, April 25 @ Apop, 9 p.m., $5: Solid Attitude, Shaved Women, & Lumpy and The Dumpers Iowa City's Solid Attitude is finally coming back to St. Louis to fucking wreck one of the best venues in town. If you aren't familiar with Solid Attitude's mean-but-infectious punk rock, do yourself a favor and QUIT BEING A FUCKING POSER! Local starlets Shaved Women and Stumpy and the Dumpsters will be riffing and sweating at Apop before that as well. Just come out and start bleeding already!
ALSO Thursday April 25 @ The Mad Magician, 7 p.m., Price TBA: Power Trip, Xibalba, Twitching Tongues, Enabler, Expire, Alpha & Omega, and Everything Went Black This is the most touring bands on one non-fest show that I've ever seen. If you like mean, heavy, fast, tough, other intimidating adjectives-type of hardcore, this would be the event of the season for you to attend. People are going to hurt each other at this show. Hopefully it'll be in the fun, friend-punching way and not the crew-beef dumb-dumb way. The Mad Magician is a new venue on Manchester in between Kingshighway and Hampton. If you went to the handful of shows that happened at AB's a few years ago, it is in the exact same spot.
Sunday, April 28 @ The Firebird, 8 p.m., $12: The Men, NRML PPL, Organs, & Flaming Death Trap The Men are one of the most-hyped punk bands in the country, and deservedly so. Come see the band before it gets swept up in a trendier circuit and costs $20-35 bucks to hear the distorted as shit, Hidden World-era Fucked Up (if the record itself did more drugs) style that the band is running on. NRML PPL will make you feel uncomfortable: Charge at them as much as they charge at you.
Tuesday, April 30 @ ASK A PUNK, 9 p.m., $5: Kremlin, Laughing Boy, Pink Sock, Bath House Boys (1st Show) What a great goddamn way to end the month. A basement show with one of the current premier d-beat acts on tour (Kremlin). From Toronto too, so they probably know a bunch of stories about No Warning and Fucked Up, if Kremlin doesn't actually contain a member or two. Champaign, IL's Laughboy is making the trip down to help the creep-out factor this show is going to induce. Pink Sock is going to make 13 minutes of your life disappear with worry and entertainment. Bath House Boys are a new super group of dorks from other bands (WFC?, Pink Sock, Totally Gay Cop) playing very mean, unsettling mid-paced hardcore reminiscent of DYS, Hoax, and Brain Slug. Come out or bum out; DIY or die.
See also: -Ten Bands You Never Would Have Thought Used to Be Good -The Ten Biggest Concert Buzzkills: An Illustrated Guide -The 15 Most Ridiculous Band Promo Photos Ever -The Ten Worst Music Tattoos Ever
Support Local Journalism.
Join the Riverfront Times Press Club
Local journalism is information. Information is power. And we believe everyone deserves access to accurate independent coverage of their community and state. Our readers helped us continue this coverage in 2020, and we are so grateful for the support.
Help us keep this coverage going in 2021. Whether it's a one-time acknowledgement of this article or an ongoing membership pledge, your support goes to local-based reporting from our small but mighty team.
Join the Riverfront Times Club for as little as $5 a month.