Tuesday, October 28, 2008

The Beltones

City: Ft. Lauderdale
Years Active: 1994 - 2005
Type of Music: Punk
Myspace or Website: http://www.myspace.com/beltones

From the TKO Records biography:

Well it didn't seem like so long ago but... The Beltones got their start in 1994 when two drinking buddies in Fort Lauderdale decided to stop fucking around in other people's bands and make the kind of music they listened to while spilling shit on each other. They were both guitar players, so they had the easiest bandmates to find taken care of off the bat. Now they needed a rhythm section. Bill's girlfriend at the time had a little brother named Kevin. He couldn't play any instrument whatsoever, but he had a ton of heart and so much balls he needed a wheelbarrow to walk down the street. He got hold of a kit and began working on keeping a beat. Just one left, and by the suggestion of Chuck Loose, the boys picked up Chris Arocha, bass player for Class War and South Florida's premier punk photographer. He was the old man of the band but you wouldn't know it to listen to him talk about robots. He loved his robots so. Now that they had a band they went about banging out a couple songs and put out a demo tape entitled "Please god make them stop". If you've ever heard it you'll understand the title. This demo was so awful that it attracted the attention of Tim Pagones, who was looking for more terrible bands to be on his Fort Lauderdale record label, Far Out Records. The boys weren't sure if they were quite ready to be doing more than practicing, but the flashy world of the big time music industry proved all too tempting for these simple buffoons, and they dove head first into the debauchery we call rock and roll with their first record, the 4 song 7 incher "Lock and Load". This record was a huge regional hit.

At least in the region known as Bill's living room, where he played it 3 or 4 times before throwing it at his roommate222s cat. Word spread all the way to that hotbed of the record industry, South Carolina, and Just Add Water records put the Beltones on their follow-up to the extremely so-so compilation "Water Music" entitled "I Can't Believe It's Not Water". Pure genius. With the Beltones' help, this record far surpassed its predecessor's mediocrity, and quite frankly smelled like an open ass. Jason Duncan was so impressed with the boys he invited them do a single for his label. What followed was the unforgettably two-sided, paper-labeled "My Old Man" single, which had songs and lyrics and that shit. Somehow this cat named Mark Rainey, who was starting up a label in San Francisco with money he earned licking stamps for lepers at a slaughterhouse (I dunno, he said it was the truth), heard the boys' tunes and wanted to make sweet music with them. Bill thought he seemed kind of queer, but the other guys convinced him to go along with them and agree to make a record with this rube. Apparently they had maxed out their credit cards at Seminole bingo and figured they could pawn the hot tub that all TKO records bands receive upon being signed. Unfortunately for them they weren't "signed", and the Forgotten had used up all the Jacuzzis filming "Kid Vegas: The San Francisco Freak". They recorded a new 4 song EP called "Naming My Bullets", and redid the old songs and put it all on a CD only release called "On Deaf Ears". They went on tour with the Workin' Stiffs and the Truents and drank a little. Not too much, they're pro and shit. Then 3 of them moved to Gainesville after watching "University Co-eds vol. 12". Chris couldn't come along because he had a new wife and his rendering business was starting to take off in a big way. Strangers in a strange town, and without a bass player, the boys were rescued by a guy named Will Thomas. Will was a drummer, and hadn't played the bass, but was down for the cause and assured the boys he could pick it up, at least for a little while. It turned out he wasn't full of shit, and pulled it off quite well. Then the shit hit the fan. Keeping it in the family proved to be too much for the Beltones, and after a heated fight vaguely having something to do with the girl who was Kevin's sister and Bill's old lady, and a lot more to do with Bill's being an overbearing bastard, Kevin Crook left the band a month before a U.S. tour without a drummer. Actually it left them without a bass player. Will was an okay bass player, but he was (and is) a badass on the skins and shit. Naturally he slid to drums, and the hunt was on to find a guy to play bass who'd be willing to spend a month in a van with the ugliest men in show business. The man to fill those shoes was James Ross, and everything was set. He was the only guy who got laid on tour. James quit the band shortly after to take karate lessons or something, and the boys got their buddy Mike Moody to jump onboard. This story with be continued shortly.......

You can order The Beltones "Cheap Trinkets" CD here:


The Beltones "My Old Man"


The Beltones "Lock And Load"


Monday, October 27, 2008

An update tomorrow

Ive had a lot of personal stuff going on this past few days which is the reason for not having a post today. Expect an update tomorrow...also Ill be adding interviews with John Wylie (Morning Again, Eulogy Recordings), Dan Mazin (Until the End), Jason Lederman (Where Fear and Weapons Meet, Machine), Matt Fox (Shai Hulud), George Van Orsdel (The Van Orsdels, Jobbernowl), and the Metal Wolf (Stickshift Lover) in the near future as soon as I get them in.
The Alex Del Bueno benefit show happened this past Thursday and from what I heard it was incredible. Churchills was sold out and they were able to raise money for Alex's family. Very big ups to John McHale, Bundie, and Mark Clap at New Art School for putting all of it together.
Lastly, Im heading up to New Jersey on Thursday morning so no post til Monday.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

A quick note

On top of the post I just did for Splat, I updated the Tension post with a much better, cleaner, and louder rip of "In Our Time" so check that out. I've sent out new interviews so Im just waiting for those to come back and Ill have them posted. Also add the Official South Florida Music Scene Myspace if you havent


Splat - Self Titled 7 Inch

City: Miami
Years Active: 1994 - 1997 (roughly)
Type of Music: Punk/Ska
Myspace or Website: n/a

I can't remember if I saw Splat or not so I really have no info on them to offer you guys today. if anyone has any info they'd like to pass on I greatly appreciate it. Special thanks to Steve for helping out

Splat - Self Titled 7 Inch


Monday, October 20, 2008


City: Daytona Beach
Years Active: 2006 - Present
Type of Music: Hardcore
Myspace or Website: http://www.myspace.com/meantimehc

Im gonna say it flat out and not pull any punches: Meantime, in my opinion, is the best current hardcore band in Florida. I had a chance to see them over the summer and they had so much energy and the kids were going off. They just released a 7 inch on Double or Nothing Records and have been touring and playing shows nonstop since its release. I was told that the band is straight edge and some of the members are vegan/vegetarian. The band sent me this to help clarify their views:

"We are a straight edge band. Issues that Alex and some members of the band stress are vegetarianism/veganism; using every ounce of hate in your body to change the things you hate about this world; that eating meat/lifting weights/drinking/etc (anything that people think make you manly) are not real ways to judge someone, not relying on a "higher power" as a crutch or one to cast blame to for your own stupid decisions"

Check their Myspace to find out when they are heading out your way.

You can order their self titled 7 inch as well as tshirts here:


Meantime - 2nd Demo


Meantime - Demo 06


Thursday, October 16, 2008

Pontius Pilot

City: Miami
Years Active: 1991 - 1993 (roughly)
Type of Music: Rock
Myspace or Website: n/a

Pontius Pilot was the band that Juan Montoya (Ed Matus' Struggle, Torche) started during the early years of Ed Matus' Struggle. I never saw em but they were pretty amazing. The quality of this recording isnt incredible but its a great listen. Give it a listen and see what you think. If anyone has more info, pass it on

Pontius Pilot - Demo and a live track from the Churchills Hideaway comp


Tuesday, October 14, 2008

R.I.P. Alex Del Bueno

Last week, the South Florida scene lost one our own in Alex Del Bueno. A long time supporter of the South Florida scene, Alex had been a member of Straight Youth, DNME, and Mindframe. This Friday there will be a memorial show and benefit to help his family after this tragic loss. If youre in the area, go support. If you can't stay for the show donate a dollar...every bit helps. No words can ever say what Alex meant to the South Florida scene and to all his friends and family...you will be missed. May your soul rest in peace

Monday, October 13, 2008

Load - Hellraiser Sessions

City: Miami
Years Active: Not sure to be honest
Type of Music: Hardcore/Punk/Noise
Myspace or Website: n/a

I never saw Load. I wasnt too into them but recently after hearing this tape, I wish I would have. Noisy, angry, pissed off. They played the Slammie Awards twice and were a fixture at Churchills for many years. If anyone has info to offer, Id appreciate it. Until then, enjoy the Hellraiser Sessions. Also if anyone has the 12 inch or any other material, please get in touch

Load - Hellraiser Sessions


Sunday, October 12, 2008

Live Quit Show from 1991

Steve Neurotic from the band Shower With Goats just put up a live set from Miami band, Quit. This show is from 1991 at Club Nu in Miami and is a soundboard recording. Head over to his blog and check it out


Thursday, October 9, 2008

Foolproof - Demo

City: Miami
Years Active: 1995 - 2001 (roughly)
Type Of Music: Punk
Myspace or Website: http://www.myspace.com/ripfp

This is the demo that started it all for this Miami Punk band. Fast, Fat Wreck style punk with lots of melody. This has 2 songs, one of which was never re-recorded (to the best of my knowledge). I prefer the version of Plastic World on here to the full length. This is when Andres was still playing drums and singing. Im pretty sure I got this in 1996...correct me if Im wrong. Either way, great starting point for this great band

Foolproof - Demo


Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Interview with Ary Lehrer (ex Poison the Well and Foolproof)

Ary Lehrer was a fixture of the South Florida scene in the 90s, having played in both Poison the Well and Foolproof. He was nice enough to take time out of his day to talk with me and here's what went down

• First off introduce yourself and what bands you have been in.

Aryeh Lehrer - Poison The Well and Foolproof

• When did you first start attending shows?

I first started going to shows back in the early 90s. I wasn’t even old enough to drive yet so I used to make my parents drop me off around the corner from places like Cheers, Far Out Records, and The Edge(now Revolution) to avoid tarnishing my 14 yr. old street cred hahah. I realized quickly that I needed to find a friend with a driver’s license.

• What bands were you into when you started going to shows?

When I first started going to shows I was all about the stuff being released on Lookout Records (The Queers, Screeching Weasel), Epitaph (Pennywise, Bad Religion), and Fat Wreck. As far as local stuff, I really started out going to see bands like Hudson, Radiobaghdad, The Crumbs, Against All Authority, etc. Mostly the Miami Punk stuff. It wasn’t until a couple of years later that I started getting into hardcore. I remember one of my first hardcore shows being Tension. I was blown away by the energy they got from the crowd and their singer Mike was doing these crazy high Ray of Today style jumps all over the stage. It was freeking electric and totally got me hooked. After that I started getting into bands like Earth Crisis, Strife, Snapcase..mostly all of the mid 90s Victory stuff that we all grew up on. The pinnacle of local hardcore for me came a little while later when I got to see Culture...I think it was the Born of You CD release party..when they had Damien singing for them and Wylie and Thurston were playing guitar. Those guys absolutely killed it. I left that show thinking that was something I for sure needed to become a part of.

• What do you feel your biggest accomplishment was as far as the South Florida scene goes?

I think the first Poison The Well cd really set the tone for what that band was going to become and the influence they have had on music today. When I think back to the diverse group of individuals with varying influences, ideas, and styles that went into that record, it's a wonder we were able to write music together. I came in there wanting to play super heavy stuff. Ryan Primack shows up playing Rush riffs on the guitar. At the time Hornbrooke just wanted to see how fast he could play punk rock beats. Somehow all of these random ideas mixed with a bunch of youthful exuberance became that album. I think when it came down to it, we just wrote an album that we all liked. We weren’t really trying to impress anyone or consciously break any new musical ground or anything. We just wanted to have a good time and write music that we could enjoy. Clearly those guys have taken their music to much higher levels these days, but I think its sticking to that same "lets write music we like" attitude we had back then that has made them great.

• Can you remember anything specific that made South Florida different from other music scenes?

I think the biggest thing that made our scene unlike most others was the unity between the different genres. In visiting a lot of other scenes, there always seemed to be this divide between the different sects of the music scene. The hardcore kids didn’t go to punk rock shows and the emo kids didn’t go to HC shows. I remember our scene feeling like this huge melting pot of musicians that just wanted to play music and have a good time. You even saw a lot of musicians in multiple bands in different genres. Look at a guy like Chad Gilbert who started out playing bass in Tension and singing for Shai Hulud who then ends up starting New Found Glory. Or Chris and Ryan coming from playing in a Fat Wreck style punk band like Last Minute to being in Poison The Well. Or even myself going from singing in Poison The Well to playing guitar in Foolproof. Most of those guys had never even really listened to Poison The Well when I joined that band. You didn’t really see that in a lot of other scenes in those days. Most people just stuck to what they knew, or were known for. I think you see the crossover a lot more now. I guess we were just ahead of our time haha.

• Can you tell us a story or something memorable that you remember from your time attending shows in South Florida?

One of my claims to fame has always been that I was one of the few people to see Shai Hulud perform with Damien Moyal on vocals. Shai Hulud is one of my all time favorite bands and "Hearts Once Nourished With Hope and Compassion" is one of the greatest albums ever..Period !! However, Shai Hulud did a recording of a lot of those songs with Damien singing and it was just incredible. Chad probably had one of the greatest voices in HC history but that recording was like a completely different band. If I’m not mistaken, Jason Lederman also played drums on that recording.

• You were an original member of Poison the Well. How did the band get started?

I used to play in this old school style hardcore band with Lowell (Promise No Tomorrow), and Peter Bartsokas (Bird of Ill Omen). A while after that band ended, I just kind of decided I wanted to take a stab at singing for a hardcore band (not as easy as it looks!!) I had been friends with Ryan Primack for a long time and I knew that although he played bass in Last Minute, he was actually a phenom on the guitar. So I called him up and pitched him on a "hardcore side project"...After he agreed, I enlisted an old friend of mine Russ Saunders to play guitar. Russ and I had known each other for years from skating and punk rock shows and stuff. I had also just met this kid Shane (Halpern) who just moved down here from NC and played bass. Originally, South FL HC scene staples Chuck Deuce and Derek Shamora were supposed to play drums and sing, respectively, but we could never get them to show up for a practice. So Ryan got Chris, who was playing in Last Minute with him at the time, to come play with us. After our first few practices, we realized Shane had a killer voice. So we decided to make him the second vocalist and I got this guy Andrew (Abramowitz), whom I met through his sister who I went to HS with because she thought the stickers on the backs of our cars seemed eerily similar, to join as well. So solidified the original lineup. (We ended up trading Shane to Keepsake for Duane Hosein and a 2nd round draft pick before we recorded the first album)

• Can you tell us some of the highlights of being in the band?

To be honest, I think the coolest thing about my time spent playing is the earmarks in the history of others. Touring with Poison The Well, we got to play with some pretty awesome bands early on in their careers. Touring with bands like Twelve Tribes and playing basements and squatter houses around the country with bands like Cave In and Saves the Day. That’s the type of stuff you don’t forget. And on a local note, getting to be a part of a scene that bred the careers of bands like Shai Hulud,New Found Glory, Dashboard Confessional and a ton of other bands who exploded out of South Florida was pretty cool too. We can all say "we were there when..."

• After Poison the Well, you played guitar in Foolproof. How did you get hooked up with them?

I had seen Foolproof play quite a few times waaay back in the day when Andres played drums and sang and never really took notice of them. After Poison The Well, my girlfriend at the time introduced me to some guys in Miami and we started a band called Once A Hero. That band lasted about 10 shows, one of which was at The Skatepark with Foolproof. At this point they had gotten a new drummer and Andres was now solely the singer. Best move they ever made moving that guy out from behind the drums. They put on one of the best shows I’ve ever seen that night. Absolutely blew every other band (including my own) off the stage. The one thing they seemed to be missing was a second guitarist. I got Andres' email from one of the guys in my band and wrote him this message about how they killed it that night but that I really thought adding a second guitarist would make them even that much better. At first, he kind of brushed me off telling me they weren’t really looking to add a second guitarist because they had had some issues with their last one and stuff. But I guess I bugged him enough because after a few more emails back and forth, he agreed to let me audition to play with them. I went to his house and got a copy of their demo to learn a few of their songs. I actually remember sitting with Ryan Primack, of all people, listening to that demo and figuring out the songs by ear together. About 10 practices and two shows later they finally told me I could be in the band and two weeks later we were out on tour with Caught Inside.

• Are you doing anything musically now?

Unfortunately not as much as Id like to be. I sometimes get the itch to write new stuff and record it in my buddy’s home studio, but nothing serious. Unfortunately the responsibilities of adulthood have taken their toll so these days I’m a suit and tie kinda guy. Damn Corporate America haha. At least I’ve got a mind full of memories though ! Most people don’t even have that.

• Thanks for doing the interview. Any last words or shout outs?

My pleasure bro. Props to you for putting this website or blog or whatever you want to call it together. This is one hell of a documentary of a scene that was a hugely influential part of my life and the lives of a lot of others. And for everyone who was around back in those days, "we'll always have the memories." Peace.

Monday, October 6, 2008

International Superheroes of Hardcore covering Shai Hulud

So this past weekend I went out to see the guys in New Found Glory in Jacksonville and Tallahassee. For those who don't know, NFG has a side project called the International Superheroes of Hardcore which is basically NFG but Chad sings and Jordan plays guitar. On the tour, the band Four Year Strong suggested that they (ISHC) cover Shai Hulud since Chad used yo sing for them. They ended up covering it at both shows since they were in Florida and it was incredible. The Jacksonville show had a high stage and a barrier so kids couldnt get on stage but the Tallahassee show was pure insanity. I stagedived (dove) for the first time in about 6 years and Im definately feeling it this morning. Im going to be acquiring the footage of the Tallahassee show soon so Ill post it when I get it but until then, enjoy the footage from the Jacksonville show.

Saturday, October 4, 2008

We have a Myspace!!!

Ive created a Myspace to further promote the South Florida Music Scene. There isnt much to look at right now but I have been uploading image covers of demos, 7 inches, full lengths, etc into the picture section. I also just spoke to a friend and he is planning on sending me loads and loads of flyers from as far as back as 1991 to scan so be ready for that. Finally this week Ill be posting the first interview. I took time and spoke to Ary Lehrer who was an original member of Poison the Well and played guitar in Foolproof so expect that this week. Again please add the Myspace and thanks for your continued support




Thursday, October 2, 2008

La Vieja Guardia CD Release!!!

La Vieja Guardia, Frank from Burning Strong's band with members of Mehkago NT, are releasing a CD on Oct. 7. They'll be playing a CD Release Show at Churchills on Oct. 25th so if you can go out to that, go and support. Great band and great guys. We'll have a full feature on them soon


The Springfields

City: Miami Springs
Years Active: 1995 - 1996
Type of Music: Punk
Myspace or Website: n/a

So who were the Springfields? The Springfields were the early recorded output of Andrew from Bird of Ill Omen. The Springsfield played fast punk rock and Andrew played drums before switching to guitar for the Bird. Pretty good quality for a demo especially back then. Fun songs, they even had a song called "I Love Straight Edge". Never saw them but the demo is real good so check it out.

EDIT: Andrew from the Springfields was nice enough to give me some insight into the band as well as the history.

"The Springfields originally and for the most part we're driven by Rudy Sheilds. He later played bass in One Less Car. I pretty much took rudys songs and recorded all the instruments and helped tighten a few things up. Lance Craig, who is a well known DJ in Chicago now, wrote I love str8edge.

The band kind of evolved from that and the songs got a little more mature later on when we recruited Aaron Jablonowski on bass and Edgar Espinosa on drums. The recordings of that era are lost as far as i know.

The final evolution though actually was when the guys from the bird joined. Tom Rankine and Pete Bartsocas joined and a video of us at club Q does exist somwhere. I think the final line up was tom on bass, pete on guitar, aaron on drums, rudy singing and myself on the other guitar.

At one point i was the drummer for live shows and rudy played guitar and sang. I think aaron was on the bass at that time.

The springfields we're yet another one of those communal bands. Different players would drop in and out for a show or two. I wish we had a recording of the last 5 or 6 songs they we're well crafted and I think our peak. The fist demo and the club Q video i'm pretty sure are the only existing record of the band."

The Springfields - Join The Springfields