Growing up in South Florida and being in high school in the mid-to-late 1990s, I missed a lot of the great "underground" noise coming out of Miami. The new Harry Pussy live/studio release You'll Never Play This Town Again (Load) landed in my mailbox recently and I had a flashback. It's May of 1997, and a friend tells me I just have to go see this band at Churchill's in Miami. It's a few days before my 18th birthday and I'm graduating soon and I'm feeling brave and forward-thinking. I look inside the CD: a handful of songs were recorded by Rat Bastard at Churchill's, 5/5/97.
Mmmmyeah, I was there. I'd never heard of Harry Pussy, but as I watched the trio's set that night, I don't think my expression changed. I was slackjawed. I had no idea how to process what I was hearing; it was so foreign and feral. It was drummer Adris Hoyos who kept my attention all night; when she screamed behind the kit, I was genuinely scared. Harry Pussy was room-clearing music to be sure, stop/start blasts of white noise that perfectly captured the trash-punk aesthetic of South Florida.
Listening to that live set at Churchill's, it seems ages ago – Clinton was president, we weren't at war, the economy was fairly stable, and their song "Drop the Bomb" didn't feel so ominous. The disc also features studio recordings and a live song from Chicago, all from 1997, as well as covers of Teenage Jesus & the Jerks' "Orphans" and Kraftwerk's "Showroom Dummies." They were the template for countless bands that came after; bands that didn't give a shit about tuning and guitar solos. Take a gander below.
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