Pailhead – Trait (1988)

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I first heard Pailhead on the classic skate flick Streets on Fire back when I was thirteen. I’m a little embarrassed to admit that I only found out this year it’s Ian Mackaye (of Minor Threat and Fugazi) singing on the tracks. Streets on Fire got me into the Descendents, Black Flag and Sonic Youth. I liked the whole soundtrack, it was just the kind of music I was looking for at the time. I sought out the bands mentioned immediately. Around this time I got into Minor Threat probably my favourite band and I love everything Ian’s done, so I should have made the connection. Trait released on Wax Trax! Records is the sole CD release from Pailhead a collaboration with Ian Mackaye and Al Jourgensen of Ministry. The release also contains other members of Ministry and Naked Raygun drummer Eric Spicer so this could definitely be regarded as a super-group. It’s unfortunately out of print although second hand copies are quite affordable and easy to find otherwise it’s up on Spotify.

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Disgusteen (1990)

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Released in 1990, Disgusteen is a low budget vampire film from Screeching Weasel front man Ben Weasel, which he’s described as “an awful movie … which was basically worthless.”[5] It’s really not that bad, throughout this essay I’ll explore the construction of the film, its themes and of course music. With a title derived from a Teenage Head song, as I’m sure you may expect the film is filled with top punk music and features some of the best punk characters on film.[5] Disgusteen follows Elizabeth’s transformation from upper class school girl to blood thirsty punk vampire as she grows to enjoy her new life among her captors the “Ashtray Punx.” Led by vampire Frankie, the “Ashtray Punx” are a gang “hellbent on hate, they kill, maim, torture, and say nasty things to various members of society.”[4] Coming across as a student film or something thrown together by friends, it’s not quite at the standard of B or C grade horror. Apart from the poor picture quality the film is pretty decent although its appeal is limited to die hard Screeching Weasel fans.

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