Bleeding Through at Musink Tattoo Festival Musink Tattoo Festival, OC Fairgrounds – March 8th, 2019 – John Mairs 13 Stitches Magazine
T.S.O.L. at Musink Tattoo Festival Musink Tattoo Festival, OC Fairgrounds – March 10th, 2019 – John Mairs 13 Stitches Magazine
The Vandals at Musink Tattoo Festival in Orange County Musink Tattoo Festival, OC Fairgrounds – March 10th, 2019
The Dead Kennedy’s Resurrect Their Prominence at Musink. Musink Tattoo Festival, OC Fairgrounds – March 10th, 2019. Even though Ron Greer took the title of DK front man in 2008, Jello Biafra loyalists have often greeted Greer and other DK singers with rotten tomatoes, unable to fully grasp the concept of these legendary punk pioneers without their signature vocals. I have to admit that when Greer took the stage on Sunday night at Musink I was concerned. He was visibly drunk and fell down on his own accord. But, as with any professional punk musician, when the music started to play and the crowd started to react to it, he managed to snap himself into the role of front man. Greer and the rest of the Dead Kennedy’s were pure gold. After several hard hitting songs including the popular “Too Drunk to Fuck”, Greer spoke about his doctor asking him to cancel the tour, “My doctors said, ‘don’t do the show, you’re too old for punk rock’. But, the fans in Orange County mean more to me than my own life.” Greer refuted, looking into the crowd, “The worst part is, you’re ALL too old for punk rock!” Then he transitioned to DK drummer D.H. Peligro’s reprimand of South Orange County for the previous weekend’s news story about Newport Harbor High School students who played beer pong with red cups in the shape of a swastika, saying, “Shame on you OC! That shit tears us apart, punk rock brings us together,” followed by a very enthusiastic “Nazi Punks Fuck Off.”
Sick of It All Sets the Stage for a Suicidal Crowd. Musink Tattoo Festival, OC Fairgrounds – March 10th, 2019. Sick of It All is fucking sick of it all; from politics to social issues plaguing America today, and they aren’t afraid to say it. This New York based, hardcore punk band have become regulars on the California concert circuit in the past several years and reviews have been mixed. However, Sick of It All opened Musink on Friday night with an impassioned set that bled energy and a motivated resolve to get their message out. Sick of It All rose to the challenge; winning over the anxious South Orange County crowd with their raucous sound and endless energy. The Hangar at the Orange County Fairgrounds went from a spacious pit with little action and few participants to a full house in a matter of minutes once the band took the stage. Lead singer and guitarist, Pete Koller, worked to set the tone for the Suicidal Tendencies fans who were out in full force and looking to stir up a healthy pit, surrendering that, as the birth place of the circle pit, the west coast had a reputation to live up to… “Young guys don’t know how to dance to fast shit. Old guys are too old to dance to fast shit… what YOU got?!” The result was pit magic and a warm OC reception for Sick of It All.
The Pro-Unity Message of Anti-Flag at Musink Tattoo Festival, OC Fairgrounds – March 10th, 2019. Opening their set with “Die for Your Government” was an indicator from the moment they took the stage that Anti-Flag was going for the jugular on issues of social inequality in California’s island of conservatism. Anti-Flag preached a strong message with a hard to ignore delivery. Known for their fervent anti-sexism, anti-racism, and anti-fascism stance, Anti-Flag railed against police brutality, war, homophobia, and sexism as the opening act at Musink on Sunday night, pushing a message of humanity over greed. Anti-Flag has made a name for themselves as social justice warriors over the years, refusing to shy away from controversial topics and from pressure to slow their activism to gain a larger support base, an ideal that they refute by hanging an American flag upside down as their back drop. At a venue with a notably tight and stringent set schedule and in the wake of weekend news that included anti-Semitism, alleged coercion within our government, tax evasion, corporate greed, and nepotism, Anti-Flag gave up stage time to allow Amnesty International to advertise their mission and ask for support, a move that was not only timely and classy, but notable in its modeling of the increasingly visible message in the punk scene today, get off your ass and do something about the injustices we complain about daily. Giving voice to the voiceless and with a clear and unstoppable message of acceptance, Anti-Flag wins over my bleeding liberal heart more every time I see them perform. They are talented, driven, and an inspiration, moving their drums into the pit for their finale and proclaiming, “This is for the people who fight racism with every breath you take”, Anti-Flag continues to unify our extended punk family and motivate action for a better world.