März 31st, 2011

Touch And Go – The Complete Hardcore Punk Zine ’97-’83 Tesco Vee & Dave Stimson

Posted in bücher by Dolf

Bazillion Points, 61Greenpoint Ave. # 108, Brooklyn, NY 11222, Usa. www.bazzilionpoints.com, www.touchandgobook.com / Turnaround UK
Isbn 9780979616389

This is a monster: 28 x 22 cm and more than 575 pages, a facsimile of the “most significant US-Hardcore Punk zine” (I doubt that!). What you get is all 22 issues of Touch & Go Fanzine (yes, T&G was a fanzine before it was a label), ever published. If I remember correctly I never before saw a copy of T&G, so I was really looking forward to read this piece of history. I should learn fast why I probably never saw the zine back then, or in later years.. apart from the fact that it was probably sold out. Ahead of their time in 1979 Tesco and Dave published T&G out of Lansing, Michigan, true fanzine style, cut and paste (cut out and glue on in this case..), great looking – tons of cool flyer and artwork – Pushead for example.

The first bunch of issues mainly contain short ramblings about this and that, the local scene (or the absence of it) and record reviews. Back then probably a really important information source for some, but probably mostly a outlet for them to tell their opinion about music, which is cool too and the idea behind a fanzine! You have funny Top 40 or Bottom 40 lists and all sorts of shit. Very bratty and in alot of cases pubescent, which is no problem, apart from the fact that Tesco even back then was a bit older… anyway. It is understood that young punks/teenagers want to provoke (and back then it was way easier to provoke just putting a porn-photo in the zine).

But it seems it was not just a phase…. Every issue is introduced with words by Tesco Vee and I have to say, I dont like his writing, not his humor and not his style. My expectations have been probably too high, so I was a bit disappointed… apart from that you get to read a few interesting/funny interviews with Black Flag, Minor Threat, Misfits, Negative Approach, The Fix, Avengers, Necros, Discharge, Iron Cross, Youth Brigade, Faith, Die Kreuzen, Crucifix, Poison Idea to name just a few better known bands. Digging thru the pages one can find some valid information about what the kids back then thought (and believe me, you will not always like what you read there…. luckly people can change!), what their idea of a scene or hardcore punk was and their outlook on life. Interesting live-reviews of band bills one nowadays would pay top-dollars to see them.

Cool short scene reviews from New York, DC and other citys from the eastcoast. Very cool photos of superyoung kids, some of them are really famous nowadays, others not. The last 4-5 issues are probably the most intersting to go thru. But, this is what it was and it is what you get, no complains, it is a good documentation of a not so good fanzine. And I’m glad I know that now. It is also interesting to read the MRR/Tim bashing for trying to manipulate the punks or for beeing too commie…. not their idea of hardcore.

Their idea of hardcore punk was, it seems, aggressive, non-pc, “funny”, provocative, uncaring, more kinda the negative type.. not full blown assholes either, lucky me! But not my idea. If I had the choice of reading a well put together book of the most intersting interviews/texts over this, I would choose the book. But, there is no choice. The embossed printing on the cover feels nice. The introductory essays of Vee, Stimson, Rollins, MacKaye and Morris – among others, should be mentioned since most of them give a good roundup of the happenings back them.
A valid part of history now ready for your bookshelf. 22 (dolf)

[Trust # 146 Februar 2011]

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