Tuesday, August 20, 2013

99 Bottles! Banned from the pubs....of Colorado Springs

      When I was 16 I was only 2 years into my adventure of being a punk fan. I wandered from the punk rock norm of Black Flag and the Ramones to find a genre called "Oi punk". This genre encompassed everything a young man loves: violence, drinking, sports, and girls. I started off with Sham 69 and Cockney Rejects and moved to the more underground Los Fastidios and Die Commandantes.

   I eventually hung up my bracers, grew my hair back out and returned to the normal life of being in the Air Force and Rockabilly. My body couldn't handle the Oi lifestyle anymore until I found myself at the foot of Pikes Peak in Colorado Springs. There I attended my first big show, The Skatalites. At the pre-show mixer at the local scooter store I met Mario, a skinhead around my age infatuated with skinhead culture much like I was. We exchanged the normal Manchester United vs. Arsenal insults, then Irish versus Italians, and then of course Rocakabilly vs. Skin.

   This would become a great friendship with Mario and soon to be Zeb whom is in the band "99 bottles". I was thoroughly impressed with their drunken antics and After listening to their title track "99 bottles" you will be quickly singing along with their Oi punk mission statement.references to skinhead culture. I was contacted by their drummer, Sebastian, to review the band. I am now listening to some of their recordings and this is what I think:

  • Lyrics: Their song-writing includes the normal subjects of boots, beer, and tattoos but not in a campy attempt to recreate the legacy of the 70's. They have the abruptness of the Boston hardcore scene. Their title track "99 bottles" is a singing along with the Oi punk mission statement.
  • Musicality: This is not your latest guitar nerd, Clapton release, or your 3 chord, soccer chant, oi punk. This is something reminiscent of the Black Flag's album Loose Nut. The punk hardcore guitar work of Zeb and Mike takes over your body and leaves you wanting to punch walls and kick over trash cans. Sebastian's high-hat and snare combo backs everything up while being noticeably on cue but not over-powering. 99 Bottles is a dream for fans of oi punk and hardcore alike.
  • Live: This is not only a great band to see but to drink pints with before and after. This is an important part of this genre. Mario's lead vocals and movement across the stage is amazingly Rollins-esque. Not some fly-by-night Oi band, these guys have played shows with the legendary Peter and the Test Tube Babies and Denver's premier punk band Bad Engrish. If you're in the Western front area or see a poster in your hometown, I highly suggest seeing 99 Bottles.
Overall 99 bottles is a great punk band that steps outside the norm just enough to be enjoyable. Please give them a like and buy one their splits or compilations.

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