Punk's not dead; it's just been repeatedly stabbed and flogged by the likes of Fall Out Boy and Blink 182.
Still, throughout the country, you can still find little pockets of punk rock. One pocket used to be right here.
Once upon a time in Santa Fe, you could go see bands like hardcore thrash-punk champions Logical Nonsense, indie-punk rockers Knowital or even post-hardcore-punk outfit Pintsize. All of these bands sounded quite different, but each upheld the values on which punk was built: heavy music, a DIY attitude, and dedication to writing songs that weren't afraid to touch on government, suburban conformity and even, from time to time, the ladies. Even yours truly was once in a punk band though, truth be told, I was 16, and we were kind of pop-punk until I heard the real stuff, after which we imploded under the weight of too many influences.
Punk may have faded into the background in Santa Fe, but it didn't die; it simply lay dormant, waiting to strike and melt our faces off.
In celebration of local punk legend Tom Trusnovic's (yes, I said legend—dude's been doing this forever, and was in a bunch of the bands that played huge roles in our scene) 40th birthday, a gaggle of incredible punk acts descends on Corazón for a night of good old-fashioned punk music. The evening consists of a free-form exchange of music that features members of Santa Fe punk acts Blood Drained Cows, The Floors and Monkeyshines. Dixon, NM's Two Ton Strap is on hand with its country-punk style and banjo shredding action to bring a little spice to what is otherwise a bill full of Trusnovic bands. Not that that's a bad thing.
The most notable performance of the night comes in the form of a reunion of 27 Devils Joking, a former staple of the Santa Fe punk scene. Devils hasn't played a show in 15 years, and once contained some of the hardest working bros in show business. Founder, front man and guitarist Brian Curley makes a triumphant return from Austin, Texas to take to the stage once more.
"It's been a while since I've played music for any reason other than fun," Curley tells SFR. "But when Tom called and asked if I wanted to play for his 40th, I got really excited."
Trusnovic (usually a drummer) on bass and drummer Tommy Archuleta (now part of local group Angola Farms and chosen by SFR readers' as this year's Best Drummer in the Best of Santa Fe poll) round out the Devils' trio.
The band's roots are in the heavy punk sound of the mid-'80s but, according to Trusnovic, psychedelia also plays a big role. "Oh, there are wanky solos, man," he says. "Curley's a punk, but he's also a hippie."
It's this kind of melding of styles and musical know-how that makes 27 Devils Joking—not to mention the rest of the bands on the night's bill—a phenomenon which we're psyched to have back, if only for a moment.
27 Devils Joking with Monkeyshines, Blood Drained Cows, The Floors and Two Ton Strap
Monday, Oct. 5
$5, $2 with server's license
401 S. Guadalupe St.