The 1980’s punk scene was explosive. During this time you had bands like Black Flag, Minor Threat, Circle Jerks, Suicidal Tendencies and many more raging harder than their predecessors. At the time, Los Angeles was known more for the likes of Motley Crue and Ratt than the punk bands. It was this very thing that two brothers from the Venice area began to really take note of the scene and created their own band. Cycotic Youth was formed and, joined the Venice/Dogtown/Santa Monica legion of groups like Suicidal Tendencies, Excel, and No Mercy. The young outfit released demos in 1985, 1986, and 1987, bringing forth a sound that showcased elements of hardcore, raw punk, and thrash metal. In 1988, Cycotic Youth broke up but, not before sharing the stage with the likes of King Diamond, Cryptic Slaughter, and Death Angel along the way. 2011 saw the release of a self-titled compilation that collected the band’s demos. And now in 2022, Cycotic Youth is back with a new single and album on the way. “Cycofied” the new single is a rip roaring heavy track. Singer Jason Brown had this to say about the song “The song is about growing up in Dogtown and ‘Cycofied’ means just you know going hard whether it’s skateboarding BMX motocross surfing it’s a R word that we used to say back in the days. We’re really excited to put out our single because it’s about our boy, [Z-Boy legend] Jay Adams, passed away a few years ago and he was a big driving force behind surfing and skateboarding in our area.”
Way back in 1990, Suicidal Tendencies released their absolutely fantastic album, Lights…Camera…Revolution! This album cemented the bands “classic” line up which featured Mike Muir, Robert Trujillo, Rocky George, Mike Clark and R.J. Herrera. This album also saw the band move away from their punk rock roots to a more thrash/groove style. The first song on the album, “You Can’t Bring Me Down” is one hell of a first song. MTV played the hell out of the video (later in the day of course), and that helped the album become successful. Also, the song was nominated for a Grammy but, they lost to Metallica that year.
Ice T and Body Count are a very interesting band. I’ll never forget hearing them with Slayer on the Judgement Night Soundtrack. Oh the 90’s you were so damn good! Lately I’ve been slowly checking out the new stuff Body Count has put out and it’s pretty good. Their last couple albums have featured covers of Suicidal Tendencies “Institutionalized” and Slayer’s “Raining Blood” Both of which are interesting and decent. Ice T took some liberties with the lyrics to the Suicidal song but, they are pretty funny.
As you all can tell I’m relishing the fact that the 90’s are starting to come back in a big way. From album and film anniversaries, bands that are finally getting their due, and the all around general vibe that it brought out of people. There was no sense of entitlement like kids now. We all fought for what we wanted and believed in. To quote the movie in which I’m writing about “Damn The Man! Save The Empire”
Empire Records came out in 1995 to very little fanfare. In fact it was slammed by critics and it bombed while in theaters. Though over the years this movie has become a genuine cult classic. The soundtrack that accompanied the movie was fantastic. The soundtrack album featured tracks by Better Than Ezra, Cracker, The Cranberries, Evan Dando (of The Lemonheads), Toad the Wet Sprocket, Gin Blossoms and The Martinis (featuring former Pixies members Joey Santiago and Dave Lovering). One of the more intriguing notes about the film and soundtrack was the inclusion of Coyote Shivers, who played aspiring musician turned store clerk Berko in the film. Coyote became involved in the Empire Records by virtue of being the stepfather of Liv Tyler, Shivers being then married to Tyler’s mother Bebe Buell. The soundtrack album peaked at #63 on the album chart.There were also plenty of other songs featured in the movie that didn’t get included on the soundtrack release. Bands like Quicksand, Gwar, ACDC, Sponge, Suicidal Tendencies, Dishwalla, and many many more.
Do yourself a favor, and go home and watch this movie and revel in the songs that accompany your youth!