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Vomit Pigs

MRR Radio #1587 • 12/10/17

This week Matt pulls some rarities out of the vault to make the scums and punks drool. Intro song: STENGTE DØRER ...

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MRR Radio #1586 • 12/3/17

On this week's MRR Radio, Rob goes ballistic for late '70s and early '80s Bloodstains punk rock from around the ...

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Maximum Rocknroll #416 • Jan 2018

Another new year, another exciting issue of Maximum Rocknroll! MRR #416, our January 2018 issue, begins with a sad note as we ...

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"Who gives a fuck?"

MRR Radio #1585 • 11/26/17

“[...] Elvis gives them a short speech about the death pangs that humanity must go through in order to reach ...

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MRR Radio #1584 • 11/19/17

Another fuct up Rotten Ron and Horrrible Halitosis Punker Power Hour. Intro song: DRUGCHARGE - Husk Rotten Ron fucks it up so you ...

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If You Like Parties…

August 3rd, 2010 by

Hey, it’s a new column! A web exclusive from our friend and yours, Arwen Curry. And there’s more where this came from, so stay tuned to this website…


Hello Again

“I feel no pain.”
—The Guilloteens, “Call on Me” (Memphis, TN, 1965)

“I feel the pain.”
—Big Star, “Try Again” (Memphis, TN, 1972)

I know it’s been a while since you’ve heard from me, but can we just not talk about it? I’m always working on three movies and one book. I always have a new band probably. Half of my friends moved to New York or L.A., and it’s sometimes hard to focus when they don’t come around to sit on the stoop. I had my reasons, and you’ve moved on, and that’s OK. But now I have my reasons again, so I hope you’ll read along. I missed you.

So let me tell you about New York earlier this summer. One night toward the end of my stay I went to see a band that used to be from Memphis. I ran into my friends playing foosball in the basement of the club. I was glad to see them, but I didn’t want to be in the basement, although the lighting was nice. They were engaged. Everyone was engaged. I’d spent hours walking up and down Broadway in the rain looking for red shoes to wear while preceding Megan down the aisle when I got home. Congratulations, Megan and John! I was learning to make boutonnieres from tutorials on the internet.

Upstairs, nobody was dancing, even though it was that kind of band. Their sound connects directly to major nerves. It’s organ-rich. Listening to the records, you can feel the heartbeats of the people in the crowd that must be gathering outside the studio to beat time with their heads against the doors. But now the band seemed tired, either that or just not loud enough; it was hard to tell. Their faces were etched, like caricatures of musicians, and their weariness, if it was weariness, made me want to take them out for milkshakes and fries. After a while, though, it became clear that it was not weariness but steadiness. They were in it for the full ride.

Still from Rudy Burckhardt’s “Under the Brooklyn Bridge” from 1953

The dance floor thawed. Everybody was grinning, sweaty, packed in like sardines. The guy behind me seemed to be dancing pretty close, seemed to be touching me, was definitely touching me, lightly on the hips, like we were posing for a prom picture. It was a strangely anachronistic way to be touched. Was it just creepy, or also exciting? I couldn’t tell. I turned to face the groper and found him modestly good-looking, a total stranger. What the hell is this, I asked with my eyebrows. He smiled and shrugged. Pretty, he mouthed. The band wasn’t breaking a sweat. A gorgeous punk rock girl from San Francisco reached out her hand. I took it and danced off into the crowd. People, you can’t omit both a pronoun and a verb and still expect strangers to make out with you.

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One Decade of Movies

December 17th, 2009 by

You’ll have to buy the magazine to see everyone’s top ten records of the decade, but here, free of charge, is MRR movie reviewer Steve Spinanli’s Best Movies of the Decade list from this month’s issue (#320, January 2010). You’re welcome!

One Decade of Movies
By Steve Spinali

Spinali_headerIt seems half the world is paved with “Top Ten” lists, but even in spite of this, they’re awfully hard to resist. But with MRR movies, things are a little more complicated.

The ideal, of course, would be to concentrate on punk movies. The reality is that there aren’t that many punk movies, and the ones that are left aren’t necessarily good. Occasionally, features will include the likes of the Ramones or Pistols, but it seems that punk is still underground in a lot of ways. To help make up for the dearth of ace material, documentaries can be a great help. They’re comparatively low budget, under-promoted, and (at their best) complement the issues MRR fans generally find interesting. As a last resort, there are always lots of good foreign films to choose from. In making a Best of Decade list, then, it’s not so much an issue of hauling out the very best features; there are too many of those lists already. My idea of a good Top Ten would include great films that you may not have been turned on to yet. And if you haven’t, look no further.

In the first category, comprised of punk-oriented films, two documentaries stand above the rest. Jim Fields and Michael Gramaglia directed The End of the Century (2003)— unquestionably the definitive document on the history of the Ramones; it includes funny and revealing moments from their early live gigs in New York, giving you a feeling for how emotionally explosive one of their gigs could be. Joey is no longer with us, of course, but after watching this film, we begin to appreciate the painful, real-life “daytime dilemma” that tore apart his personal life. The End of the Century is by no means a definitive or complete biography of punk’s greatest band, but you can’t help but understand their personalities more intimately after you look past their public image.

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