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Here's Five: Downtown Boys Share Their Favourite Political Punk Songs

Here's Five: Downtown Boys Share Their Favourite Political Punk Songs

Wednesday 22nd November, 2017 3:37PM

Providence, Rhode Island punks Downtown Boys are heading to Auckland’s Whammy Bar for a special one-off show this December. An on-stage riot of horns, guitars, drums and screaming, the outspoken band are well-known for their politically charged lyrics and for bringing the party wherever they visit. Ahead of the occasion we asked bassist Mary J. Regalado to share her five favourite political punk songs to get us even more pumped about December…

1. Neo Boys - Poor Man’s Jungle

Neo Boys were active from 1978-1993 in Portland Oregon. 1982's Crumbling Myths EP opens with 'Poor Man's Jungle'. It's a catchy song that encapsulates the frustrations of capitalism and highlights class-based oppression. I love the call and response vocals and Neo Boys classic, clean guitar tone and bouncy bass lines. "Looking through life with an angry eye / This is the system that strips me of my dignity”

2. Bona Dish - Challenge

A song about challenging the status quo and how violent complicity and acceptance can be (a theme that is addressed on Downtown Boy's latest album, Cost of Living). I like how the minimal drums carry this pop song. This song was released on cassette in 1981 and reissued by Captured Tracks in 2013.

3. Wilma - Fast Fascist

This is about Ronald Reagan and the first wave of neoliberalism. Wilma was from San Francisco and have only one 7" and one 12" LP to their name (both on Subterranean Records). This is the last song off of the three track Pornography Lies 7" was recorded in July '81 in SF, six month's into Reagan's first term as presidency.

4. Kebab - System

I love this band so much. Belgian band Kebab recorded and self-released We Live In A System on cassette tape that in 1981. The minimalism and repetitive nature of this song is driven by angular guitars and a drum machine that sounds almost like a kitchen appliance.

5. MyDolls - Soldiers Of A Pure War

Houston's MyDolls is a Texan punk staple. They formed in the late 70's and are still playing shows and putting out new albums. This song in particular always strikes an emotional response with me as it examines the horrors and hypocrisies of American imperialism and religion in under two minutes.

Downtown Boys are playing at Auckland’s Whammy Bar on Tuesday 5th December, tickets are available HERE via UTR.


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Tue 5th Dec
Whammy Bar, Auckland

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