New Blog Announcement, And Why This Will Be My Last Post On MadeOfSteeltown..

It’s been a long time since I wrote on this blog. (Not since September of 2013.)
I haven’t been up to much, scene-wise.
I haven’t been going to shows, I haven’t been writing publicly, (electronically or
on paper), and I just generally haven’t been what you would call ‘around ‘in Hamilton.
Well, it’s time for my confession about why that is. I’ve made excuses before, but I want to finally tell the truth.
I have Generalized Anxiety Disorder, Depression, and Social Anxiety Disorder.
This is not an excuse to friends who wanted me at their show. I’m not trying to get pity.
I’m just tired of lying and excuses. Not to mention hiding what has affected me for so long.
(I have had these conditions since I was 17, but in September of last year, it got to the worst point.)
I’ve put a lot into trying to get better. Everything isn’t as good as it once was, but I’m working on it.
I just want any of the people I know who might read this to know that I appreciate and miss them.

Now, for the good news. I’m starting another blog here on wordpress. It will encompass what’s going on with me, some music-related content, and essays I’ve been writing.
The link is:
hellodaddyhellomomimyourcherrybomb.wordpress.com

Thanks for reading, and thanks for all the support you gave this blog.

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Thunder Issue 18 (Final Issue.)

“The opposite of the happy ending is not actually the sad ending–the sad ending is sometimes the happy ending. The opposite of the happy ending is actually the unsatisfying ending.” Orson Scott Card

This is to be the final issue of my zine Thunder. (Paper issues will also be available if you live in Hamilton, Ontario.)
I’m having some health issue; and I’m attending school in the fall, so I will still do some music reviews.
But they will be on here only.
Doing this zine has been an incredible experience. I’m grateful I got to meet so many incredible people and learned so much.

For this last issue I want to thank EVERYBODY that helped make this zine possible and helped give it an almost 2 year run.

I want to thank my family. (My mother, father, brother, and Grandma.) They showed incredible support, they aided in getting the zine prepared, they read issues and provided feedback, and they never once said ‘you can’t’.

I want to thank every band/person that let me interview them. I got to meet so many amazing people; you know who you are, and my gratitude can’t be measured.

I want to thank the stores and venues that carried my zine. Not only were you kind enough to carry it, but you didn’t ask for a penny. Thank you so much for making sure my zines could be found.

I want to thank the Hamilton Public Library. Before I had a home printer, the library made the first issues of my zine possible with their computers and printers. Thank you for the accessibility.

I want to thank the Punk community in Ontario. They are some of the most supportive people I know, and I’m lucky to know them.

I want to thank anyone who ever read or supported Thunder. It meant the world to me when someone told me to they had read my zine.

To anybody I’ve missed, I’m sorry and thank you for your support.

Why The Hiatus You Ask?

Hello Everyone. It seems like forever ago I last wrote on this blog. (It’s really just been 7 months, according to the last published issue.)
For anybody who’s asking ‘Why The Hiatus?’, several things happened at once; and separately too, that made me take my break from writing, photography, and Punk/ other shows.
First; my Dad had to go away for a new job in November 2012. Now, I’ve always had anxiety/ panic attacks; but they got really bad around the time he left.
Second, my migraines; little devils they are, have gotten worse in recent months. I’m awaiting an appointment with my neurologist to see what’s going on.
Finally, my poor Grandma broke her leg. So I, along with my Mom and brother, have been helping her in this past little while.
And that’s basically it. I wish I could say I was in some exotic, far-off land; writing That Great Novel. (And I want to someday.) But for now; I just want to get me, my camera, and a notepad to a Punk show.
So get ready to see me back. Maybe not as much, but still there.

The 2012 Thunder Music Awards.

I think by now, most people who know me know two things:

1: I have a zine called Thunder.

2: Every year, I compile a list of what I personally think is the best in Ontario’s Punk and Alternative Rock. Whoever wins gets my unwavering support and some kind of candy in a golden wrapper to mark the occasion. (If I had the money for actual trophies, the zine probably wouldn’t exist.)

This was a, pardon my language, a fu*king fantastic year for music in Ontario. Metal, Punk, and much more filled the clubs, streets, and headphones. Whether you were taking in a free show this summer at one of many festivals, or taking in a show in the colder weather, you were sure to be in awe. (I know I was.)

Now, a few things. I’ve added some new categories for this year; I allowed for more ties, and I vow to hand out the momentos. (So bug me if you don’t get your gold-encased chocolate.)

Best Album (Punk) Tie:

Adelleda ‘Let’s Talk About Adelleda’

Born Wrong/ Klein96 Split 10″

Best Album (Non-Punk) Tie:

Gatling ‘Beforemath’

The Barettas ‘The Night Is Young’

Best Album Not From This Decade:

UXB ‘Tick Tock Boom’

Best Bassist (Female): Lindsay Campbell Beaudoin. (Rackula.)

 

Best Bassist (Male): John “Uprise” Kedini.   (The Pre-Nods.)

 

Best Guitarist (Female):Candice Skullian.    (Skullians.)

 

Best Guitarist (Male): Brandon Kummer.     (Web Society.)

 

Best Drummer (Female): Justine Cowie.                                                                                                                                                                                        (The Boys.)

 

Best Drummer (Male): Alex Sallas.                                                                                                                                                                                                (Gatling.)

 

Best Vocalist (Female): Samantha Rutherford.                                                                                                                                                                            (The Boys.)

Best Vocalist (Male): Glen Faulman.                                                                                                                                                                                                (The Steeltown Spoilers.)

Best Musician Who Plays An Instrument Uncommon To Their Genre:

Female: Alisun (no last available) Band: The Saints Are Coming. Instrument: Violin.

Male: Jim Fitzgerald. Band: The Pre-Nods. Instrument: Harmonica.

Best ‘Intense’ Performer: Nathan Ivanco. Band: NOT.

Best Duo: Frankie And Jimmy.

Best Band (All Members Under 25): NOT.

Best Band (That Sounds Like Another Decade): Wiggler!?! And The Tiny Humans.

Best Band (Mixed Gender): Skatalyst.

Best Band (All Members Over 25): The Steeltown Spoilers.

Best Band (Female-Led): Rackula.

Best Band (Male-Led): The Safety Collective.

Best Band (From Outside Of Hamilton): Armed And Hammered.

Best New Band: The Sketchbooks.

Best Band (Cover Band): The Krumones.

Best Band. (This Year. Period.): Web Society.

Best Song (Tie):

‘Champion’ Adelleda

‘Threat From The Deep’  Wiggler!?! And The Tiny Humans.

Best Band Name: Nothing Helper.

Best Album Name (Tie):

‘Lets Taco Boat Life’ NOT

‘Summertime Blues’ Wiggler!?! And The Tiny Humans

Best Solo Project (Tie):

Steve Hanson In Transit

Nathaniel Blizzard

Best Reunion:

Razor Eater.

Best Record Label (Tie):

Schizophrenic Records

Rebel Time Records

Best Event: Rebel Fest.

Best Way To Spend A Weekend: At a show.

Best Store (Punk Rock): Crash Landing.

Best Store (Non-Punk Rock): The Button Pushers.

Best Place For Rare Music (Tie):

Hammer City Records

Cheapies

Best Venue (Indoors): Crash Landing basement (R.I.P!)

Best Venue (Outdoors): Gage Park.

Best Festival (Tie):

It’s Your Festival (New Music Expo)

Burlington Sound Of Music

Best Venue Outside The City: The Horseshoe Tavern.

Best Idea: Zines Becoming Widespread Again.

 

Even though they did not win, I would like to thank the following bands/ artists. I’ve been listening to them all year, and I think they’re fantastic. I encourage everyone to check them out!

Stick and Bone

Nanochrist

Weekend Riot Club

T.V Freaks

Thunderdykes

Trampled By Turtles

The Cola Heads

The Stragglers

Paul Federici

Theatre Crisp

The Waterbodies

The Snips

Sondra Du Ville

Snakecharmer

Poison Spur

Gag Order

Bourbon DK

The Safety Collective

Slender Loris

Swords Of Texas

Sailboats Are White

Paper Lions

Senile Feline

Social Club No. 27

Ophelia Syndrome

Mean Tangerine

The Lucky Ones

Gabrielle Papillion

Emma Hill And Her Gentlemen Callers

Greasemarks

Devils Hotrod

Charlotte Cornfield

The Balconies

The Rebel Arms

Alert The Medic

Aetherborn

413s

Hold A Grudge

Nine Eleven

The Dinner Belles

Brixton Robbers (R.I.P!)

Jesse LeBourdais

Hamilton Philharmonic Orchestra

Darcy Hepner Jazz Band

Problem Children

Hockey Teeth

Sexbeast

One Year Of Thunder.

*Note: This article contains mild sarcasm and my awful jokes.

**Note: The list below contains thank-yous. Aside from my family, the order was as people came into my mind. I did not include last names or anything that people might consider private. They know who they are, and what they have done to help.

It was a dark and stormy night…. (I actually don’t remember the weather.)

But about a year ago at night, I created a zine after some friends and family members encouraged me to. (I had been writing show reviews under the Notes section of my Fa*eb*ok account for some time, and they thought it would awesome to have some paper content. Especially those without a Fa*eb*ok account.)

I worked on the zine alone. It was handwritten.  I always made a quick cover from marker or pen. I always got copies done at the library. And my first interview was my brother.

Thunder, (the zine in discussion), has changed a lot.

I now type whatever part I write, because it looks a lot tidier. I work with a partner, and we take fan submissions so I’m no longer working on the zine alone. I have WAY more cover options. (Some people could argue the new covers are better, but I don’t think anyone understood my artistic vision. I mean, I did it in PEN and in a hurry. I am so creative and avant garde.)

The machine I was most thankful for this year was a printer of my own. It’s expensive at times, but great when it’s cold out and I can print at home.

By far, the most surprising thing I experienced this past year was the interviews. How many people wanted an interview; and continue to. How people said yes when I asked. (I even requested to attend the S.C.E.N.E Festival as Media and was accepted! But I got sick the night before and had to sadly cancel all my interviews.)

I met alot of fantastic people this year, and discovered more about the people and city I admire.

That’s why I want to take this time and say thank you. Below is a list of people who have been awesome to me this year. Whether they read the zine, offered praise and encouragement, visited this site, provided a soundtrack, or were an awesome family member/ friend/ reader/, I owe them EVERYTHING. The zine would not exist, I would not have readers, and I would not have motivation. So thank you to:

My Mom and Dad

My brother

My maternal Grandmother

Nathaniel

Sue and Crash

Craig and Leah

Glen and Jody

The members of Adelleda

The members of Web Society

The members of Rackula

The members of NOT

Erik and Nina

The members of The Rebel Arms

The members of Skullians

The members of Slender Loris

The members of Wiggler!?! And The Tiny Humans

The members of Gag Order

Cyndi

The members of Nanochrist

The member of Born Wrong

The members of Bourbon DK

The members of The Nailheads

The members of The Safety Collective

Rebel Time Records

Schizophrenic Records

Jenn

The members of Gatling

The members of The Pre-Nods

The members of At What Cost

Shonagh

Hailey

The members of Nothing Helper

Kelsey

Isabella

Mike

Molly

Bobby

Laura

Rodrigo

All my readers. The ones I never see. The ones who surf this site, and the ones who pick up a zine.

 

Thank you everyone. I look forward to a new year of writing, interviews, photography, exploring this great country, and meeting cool people.

If I’ve forgotten anyone, sorry!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Hate Isn’t A Part Of My Punk Rock.

*NOTE: By my definition of Hamilton Punk, I include those that come in from surrounding municipalities, provinces, and even countries who share the idea of an inclusive scene.

I think Hamilton is a really great place and I love it here.

Part of it is the art. Part of it is the feeling. Part of it is the music.

But the biggest part is the people. I grew up here, and I know that most people in Hamilton are nice. But since I’ve started going to Punk shows, I have witnessed the best in people. Truly, 98% of the people in Punk are the best people you could ever meet.

That’s why I am saddened it when people with extreme, hateful views have to stir the pot and attempt to wreck everyone else’s good time at a show. (Like they did at Doors Pub the other night.) Or even in life.

I will not mention these people much, except to say that they have views that no one should hold. And this group has committed violence time and time again.

The people, music, shows, and venues I love makes EVERYONE feel like they are at home. Not just those that look a certain way.

I believe anybody that wants to have fun at a show should be welcomed. (I was at Slamfest a few weeks ago and there were some new faces. I hope they become regulars.)

ANYBODY who spouts hates for a certain colour, race, gender etc should be tossed out. That kind of hate isn’t a part of Punk Rock.

Hell, it isn’t a part of any music.

Review of Adelleda’s ‘Let’s Talk About Adelleda.’

Let’s be honest. Most of us have things that happen on our birthday that we would rather ignore or forget. (There’s a lot associated with September 25th that doesn’t hold the best memories for me or others, including an 8.0 earthquake that hit Japan nine years ago on the date.)

But this year, one of my favorite bands released a 4 track album on the 25th.

Adelleda, Hamilton and Stoney Creek’s Skate Punk sons, gave everyone ‘Let’s Talk About Adelleda.’ It is an E.P that better captures what an enjoyable, loud chaos their live show is, despite not being a live record. It also covers a lot of ground in it’s lyrical content, as you’ll read.

1: Just A Shame.

Originally appearing on Herkimer Street, this track has had a complete re-do. But in a way that compliments and enhances it, not so that it’s unrecognizable. The drums hit harder. The dual guitars do battle and compliment at the same time. The bass keeps a fine anchor. And the vocals are clearer and more furious.

Going by the lyrics, I’ve always thought of this as a love song; (‘We can never be in love), but there is more going on than your average Punk song.  (‘Watch you slip away’ ‘A mess of tubes’ and ‘Can’t you see/ You are slowly dying?’ make the case to me.)

2: Don’t Worry I’m Drunk.

This is song was made into Adelleda’s first professionally directed music video, (view here on Youtube http://youtu.be/JsHqcwUKJng), and the band couldn’t have written a more timely song.

The lyrics concern drunken encounters and the children that come of them.

On the instrument side of things, it’s like one of the band saw a Hamilton mosh pit and put a tune to it. The music is aggressive, and doesn’t let up.

3: 5 Months In England.

Going a little easier on the listener’s ears, this track tells the story of a couples break-up after one of them spends 5 months in England. (That was what I got from the lyrics, at any rate.)

The instruments vary on this song.  They are the slowest of any track on the E.P, but the speed up and go to their original state nicely.

It’s a great rest point on the album before it gets out one more blast of fury and finishes.

4: Champion.

Fact People Probably Already Know Me: I’m Hamilton proud. I love living in this city, and I will never live anywhere else.

Fact People Probably Don’t Know About Me: I practice Krav Maga. I decided to learn after a startling event at a show, and like most things I do, I listen to music while practicing.

Just Plain Fact: This song is a ferocious, pounding sonic ode to Hamilton with pride and thrash vocals in all the right places. I find it the perfect track to practice to, to write to, etc. But it also encapsulates my feelings for my home city perfectly.

Call it ego, call it silliness. Call it whatever the hell you want, but this track is my new personal anthem.