Sunday, July 10, 2011

I've Got Straight Edge: A Post Hardcore Story

The dark grey night bled a particular kind of smokey light. The local monastery deepened its aura of wonder and brooding posture against the backdrop of charcoal clouds backlit by a bright full moon. Even the mice took a night off from stirring. Not one window in the entire suburban part of town exposed itself to the outside world with a yellow glow. Above flew what could be either vultures, crows, or bats. A solitary sound whispered throughout the region startling some young from sleep but only they, as the rest aren't as easily frightened. Adults laid in rapid eye movement comas unaware of this howling beast, but what was it? The terrible high pitch screeches resembling soft distorted bass and exaggerated treble. It could only be best described as a flesh-hungry retarded autistic bird high on heroin and suffering Asperger's syndrome. But what was it? Oh, it was just a guy driving by with his windows down playing audio cassette of Fugazi - 13 Songs.

Disjointed vocals as if babies torsos were ripped from limbs rung throughout the land vibrating their bile and blackblooded awfulness with such a force glass broke and swingsets sung in confusion and anger. Although midnight, a young couple risking curfew noticed the strange events at the park, even the seesaw was leveling back and forth like a drinking bird toy. Halting the nearby ghost swingset the boy said, "What's that about?" before continuing his swing. "You know, I love swinging at night, here, with you. It's beautiful. The long tall trees. Being next to my sweet significant other on this lonely night and peering at the stars. It's as if these chains that rock me to and fro are attached to the sky itself." His girlfriend smiled, but their contentment was short lived. It wasn't long before they were hit with the wall of sound from the passing car. The boy's smile contorted into a frown. "Oh my god, it's fucking Ian MacKaye." The couple sought shelter from the sound in the nearby slide tunnel but it only exacerbated the problem.

Meanwhile in other parts, a pornography shopkeeper placed the final bolt lock on his store and pocketed his key. Blasting Fugazi, the unknown man drove past his establishment causing the front window's glass to shatter. The music was so bad it even liquified the plastic packaging around the various sex toys on display. Rubber breasts and removable vulvas fell onto the street. The disgruntled Lithuanian man took off his Humphrey Bogart hat and pressed it flat into the ground with his heel. "My God," he said, "The sounds of bombs from The War were more musical. The cries of death from disemboweled men weren't this painful. It sounds like any pop song from a movie starring Antony Michael Hall if recorded in a garage inside a basement." At that moment, having heard such shameful music, he decided to return to his native country. Elsewhere in the car the track clicked marking the finish of "Bulldog Front."

The car continued. It stalked upon the streets like a serial killer, searching for targets on which to impose its sadistic violence. All windows down, except the one covered with duct tape and a black garbage bag. It found its way to Easy Street, the most bustling part of the city late at night. Tiny yellow lights by the dozens lit the sidewalks and coming attractions. Happy couples walked along the streets with their lovers and friends enjoying the bliss of the late evening. "Dear Lord, what the hell is that?" fervently asked a man with a hearing aid. "What, that critically injured panhandler collecting the blood from his lungs in his beggars' cup?" asked a blonde woman in flannel and an eye-patch. "No. The sound, it's horrible. It's horrible!" claimed a third party. As the car steered through Easy Street the masses cleared into any open building, any welcoming bush, any treasure of an entranceway that may provide shelter from the overwhelming grating sound of the song "Suggestion."

"What it is-What it is-What it is to be a man!" exclaimed the obnoxious vocalist of the tune. A distraught 20-year-long vegan used his iPhone's Shazam audio recognition software to determine the name of the song. Upon reading the band bio, he hurriedly denounced his diet of raw foodism and quickly ordered a Double X-tra Anti-Kosher hotdog with a bun comprised entirely of bacon from a moonlighting concessionaire. "Can I use your bottle of catsup, please," the former vegan asked. "But sir, you have plenty on your dog already." Not unwilled, he added, "It's for my ears. Jesus, who would produce that? Who recorded it? An animated rendering of Steve Albini's appendix?" "It's not bad," said the food seller before white foam filled his mouth and he convulsed on the floor in his hourly seizure as part of his undiagnosed life-long schizophrenia. The track clicked and changed to "Margin Walker."

Young gentlemen played peacefully at the local skatepark. They took a break on the benches near the street holding their boards like fallen body parts and discussing tricks, potential sponsorships, and social class injustices, as the ominous car glided by them now playing "Burning Too." The volume was cranked to 11. "Christ, it's that band with that one guy from Minor Threat!" said a boyish skater. Skateboards dropped with haste with a sound of a carpenter laying down wooden flooring. The boy put on emergency earmuffs, and yelled, "Come on, even as Minor Threat they were a repetitive unoriginal toddler with one tenth the passion of Henry Rollins and he wasn't even an original member of Black Flag!" The other men of the skate group were rolling around on the floor with their hands over their ears, literally bleeding. One tubby skater stated, "Please someone help. My eardrums haven't yet burst! I can no longer take the vocals!" The earmuffed voice of reason ran to his aid and shouted, "Don't worry. I've got the straight edge!" Before pulling out a straight razor and hacking off his best friend's ears.

Suddenly, quiet hit the car and the music was muted. The song "Lockdown" was put to an early halt. It was necessary for the man to pick up a prostitute in the seedier section of town. The car continued. A woman named Brown Sugar crawled in and took a creased twenty. As she lowered her head and reached for his zipper the man resumed playback of his Fugazi tape and the woman went furious, fleeing the car yelling, "Rape! Rape!" before her head exploded in her trembling hands like a frustrated lemming from the game Lemmings. Sad, the man relaxed to the final track, "Promises," and enjoyed a peaceful journey home. Closing the garage the song ended and he was greeted by his son, Ian. Mr. MacKaye smiled, "Oh, my boy, you know I'm biologically required to love everything you do. Yet even I must admit the musicianship here is lackluster and your voice sounds like a dog with tourettes being kicked." The father gently slammed the cassette of 13 dreadful songs at his boy's feet and left. Ian stared broodingly.

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