Words by Sean Moeller, Illustration by Johnnie Cluney, Recording engineered by Matt Oliver, Mastered by Sam Patlove
The members of the legendary Santa Cruz, California, punk band Swingin' Utters have aged since those youthful years starting out, as is wont to happen nearly 25 years on down the line. They are no longer kids, but they will still demolish you with their rebellious angst and their searing riptide of speedy guitars and sweaty vocals. They haven't lost the need to get it out of their systems and the songs they wrote in the late 1980s and 1990s seem as if they're still coming from the same white hot coals and angry pits as they started out from. They question those teets hanging off the sacred cows and especially all of those people hanging around down there, with their mouths wide open, hoping to catch a mouthful of the drink, even if it's disgusting to watch such suckling. It's great to point it out though, to make an example of those foolish people. Lead singer Johnny "Peebucks" Bonnel sings on "Windspitting Punk," from the 1996 album, "A Juvenile Product of the Working Class," "You're telling me to shape up or ship out/But I'd never shape myself for something so offending as you and your kind." Sentiments such as these are such passionate numbers that they don't go away, and never will. They serve as the foundation of these opinionated men. They can't possibly be ironed out by age and time, but instead they are ripples that get larger and more choppy as the years go on, as that youthful stubbornness and pessimism, a distrust of elders and "the system" is supported by hard facts and information that comes from a real place. As you grow up and into a life where you're taxed to death and you realize that the dudes that were pricks when they were in high school are still the same dicks they always were, but now they're being dicks in jobs that can affect you even more - that can reach right into your pockets in plain daylight, those youthful feelings of being pissed and wanting to kick shit around, burble back up. It's here that we rejoin the Swingin' Utters, with the program already in progress.