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Hierba Mala is a punk group from Piacenza and the surrounding area that, from the idea of Alex Corbellini (guitarist and singer), has become a group whose main objective is to awaken the world and the population, increasingly alienated by technology and other futile things, and to return to so-called "real music", produced by people and not by machines.
It all began in January 2007 when Chris and Miccetta, former members of one of Europe's most important and popular punk rock bands, former members of Sinking Polecats, agreed to reunite. TOUGH's first record "Fast/Faster" was published in April 2007 on El Topo Records, only on 300 hand-numbered vinyls.
Ten tracks on it, 15 min faster and tuneful punk rock. They play at major international festivals and share the stage with bands like Led Zeppelin, NOFX, Bad Religion, Emanuele Filiberto and Burzum. In March 2010, they recorded a beautiful demonstration, which they projected themselves into the top positions of the ranking of their favorite demos.
After a few appointments on their land they crossed the borders in December 2010 and played in Kranj, Slovenia.
Punk: what he was and what is left of him 40 years after his birth.
"The answers are manifold." One thing is for sure: Punk was there and this year he celebrates the 40th anniversary of his birth. Nevertheless, we will try as far as possible to at least suggest the idea of what punk has been in the music scene from 1976 until today.
Cos'è il Punk? Punk is much: a style, a cultural movement, a musical genre. Musically, it is a variant of rock that reached its peak between 1976 and 1979, although its origins go back to the 60s. The first use of the term "punk rock" dates back to the Chicago Tribune on 22 March 1970, when an LP by singer Ed Sanders was called "punk rock reddish neck sentimentality".
If you hear a punk song, the detection is performed immediately. Although punk was born in 1976, the forerunners of the genre actually date back to the mid-1960s: North American garages rock bands such as The Kingsmen, The Kinks and above all The Who, are considered forerunners of the mixture of musical ferocity and rebellious attitude that would later characterise the first British punk of which The Clash are the greatest representatives.
The genesis of punk rock, which began with the rock experiments of bands like The Who, Velvet Underground and New York Dolls, went through the decisive moment in the early 70s, in Detroit (USA), when a boy, later known as Iggy Pop, and other friends formed the group The Stooges, which played a key role in the birth of the genre.
The Stooges, although not characterized by the talent and technical eclecticism typical of the above bands, become paradigmatic for two reasons: the musical style and the quality of the performances. In 1974 the group disbanded, but at that time their influence was already remarkable, especially in the USA.
Among all the young fans of Iggy Pop and his companions are Jeff Hyman and John Cummings, two young people from New York who share a passion for rock, who will soon bear the names Joey Ramone and Johnny Ramone, who together with Douglas Glenn Colvin and Tamás Erdélyi will form the first true punk rock group in music history, the Ramones.
Although some believe that the birth of punk rock came thanks to The Stooges, it is recognized worldwide that the first punk rock group is the Ramones group, also known as "Fast Four", a name that refers to Fab Four's (the fabulous 4, i.e. the Beatles) name.
The Ramones' first work dates from 1976, anticipating that of the British groups by one year. They were a dirty Rock & roll, inspired by classical artists like the Rolling Stones and the Who and especially The Stooges, but raw and less technical. According to some, their music was inspired by garage rock, a genre that was also rather rough and dirty, and other forms of rock & pop like surf.
The scene in New York and on the East Coast was the first to evolve because in the past, groups were formed in the same places that inspired and anticipated the punk wave, such as the New York Dolls, The Heartbreakers, Television, MC5, Speaking Heads, Tuff Darts and others. Basic to all this was the activity of a small club in Manhattan, the CBGB, where all these bands played very often.
Television was also very important, especially for the emergence of the "aesthetic" punk style. A frequent visitor to the CBGB was Patti Smith, who was considered the first punk woman in history. The upheavals of 1968, the economic crisis and the strong political opposition of the moment are the humus in which the first punk rock bands were born, especially in London.
The main character in the migration from punk rock to Europe was Malcolm McLaren, who returned to London in May 1975 after a brief period as New York Dolls executive, inspired by the environment he had met in New York and the CBGB. First, he decided to open a clothing store (called SEX) with Vivienne Westwood, specializing in clothes such as T-shirts, leather jackets and rivets, the style introduced abroad by Ramones and TV that will shape the entire punk movement.
He also started to act as the leader of a group called The Swankers, which soon received the much better known name Sex Pistols. In 1976 punk rock bands had grown considerably in number and popularity, driven by the success of Pistols: The Clash, The Damned, The Vibrators, The Slits, UK Subs, Generation X and the later Joy Division are just a few examples.
In October 1976 it was The Damned who released the first punk rock single of an English group called New Rose, while the following month Sex Pistols was successful in Great Britain with the single Anarchy. Compared to the other two areas, Los Angeles also had its importance in the initial punk scene, with bands like The Germs, later followed by Circle Jerks, The Weirdos and The Dickies.
The music was characterized by a much harder tone and at the same time more politicized lyrics than those of the East Shore, qualities that brought punk to more aggressively streets. The genre was catalyzed and strengthened in Los Angeles so much that it was here that the first hard-core punk bands were founded. From the 90s until today it has remained the most fruitful area of the industry: in fact, the genres punk revival as well as punk rock, punk skin and punk melodies come from here.
At the end of the 70's England was the only country where punk was a real commercial success, so much so that the debut album of The Clash, released in April 1977, reached twelfth position in the English charts, while the Pistols single God Save the Queen reached second place.
As for the USA, New York changed, with the only fundamental exception of the Ramones, punk rock into the New West and post-punk sub-genres, while in New Jersey the misfits introduced a new style called terror punk. But it was on the Pacific coast of the USA, especially in California, where punk rock had its "second youth" and knew the first extreme style variation, hardcore punk.
In the late 1970s, as the masses concentrated on punk rock, the movement was divided into a variety of derivative forms. Punk after punk" has a certain name, Post-Punk, a label that best expresses that it is a phase of transition to new genres.
The most mature fruit of post-punk, the landing place where these bands arrive, consists of a more nihilistic form resigned to the dark tones of the punk spirit: the New Wave. Paradoxically, the New Wave is very different from the other genre that derives from punk, namely hardcore, the son of an ideological operation that is completely opposite to the New Wave, which is to emphasize the stylistic features of punk, which is much more violent than punk itself.
In addition to the various diversifications, as many subgenres and current ramifications as subgenres have formed as there are pop punk, ska punk and punk dancing. Through these styles, which were developed in the 90's, punk rock was brought back into the masses after a ten year period in the underground and finally became part of the general stream with two thousand years.
Among these genres, pop-punk and hard-core melody were the genres that most influenced the resumption of the punk rock trend. The groups that best exploited the commercial potential of these genres and started the punk review were Green Day, The Offspring, followed by NOFX.
I think it's undeniable that punk moved to a better life in 2016, and the cause of death is most likely its commercialization. Born as a rupture movement, punk has resisted musical seriousness since its inception and has shown itself intolerant of the mechanisms and discipline of daily practice.
Originally rejected by multinational record companies, punk immediately sought ways to make himself known, for example by adopting the strategy of self-production and self-promotion, thus creating a market without the logic of the traditional music industry. This led to a heterogenesis of the ends which inevitably led to the first internal controversies leading to irreversible fragmentation of the punk culture.
After all, punk rock has been so integrated into Western culture since the 90s that its symbols have often been used to sell trade groups, clothing, shoes and even cars. The willingness to sell has transformed punk from a subculture into a fashionable one; it is supported by Johnny Rotten, the idol of the Sex Pistols: "Punk and the Sex Pistols were a revolution, a blow to the moldy English society, but it lasted too long.
Then, the merchandising won, the whole punk phenomenon turned into a "fashionable farce". How the SLC punk movie teaches. Out of Crest (1998) Anarchy would have no future in our society, so the only solution for punk culture was to invent an alternative way to sabotage the hated system as if you were damaging it from within, because true rebellion lies in the minds of individuals and not in the coats of arms and leather jackets.