fifteen years ago i was in a hardcore band that wasn't very good, but that didn't affect us having shows with some decent bands from all over the country. one of my favorite hardcore/punk/whatever bands we opened up for wasn't from terribly far away - chicago - and i thought i'd post some new videos of theirs i found on youtube.
MK Ultra did the angry, loud, distorted, screaming, fast, political thing pretty damn well. and, as i sit back and think about their shows, i realize jeff jelen was one of my favorite guitarists to watch. i have only a few friends who enjoy this type of thing, but to us it typifies what we like most out of the punk music we listen to - it's extremely angrily emotive. it never tried to be flashy or had any group-chant choruses; it was more of a visceral purging of sorts — a "jesus christ the world is a mess and i can't effing stand it" vomiting of emotion. songs about self-reflection in one's early/mid twenties, songs about the two-facedness of some of our american policies (versus our stated ideals), even personal songs about an alcoholic parent. i'm sounding like a complete moron trying to explain why i love these guys so much, so i'll stop and post the vids, with lyrics after the link.
MK Ultra (chicago)
at the More Than Music festival somewhere in Ohio, 1998
"MOST LIKELY TO SUCCEED"
the fucking student council is climbing the corporate ladder
and the former cheerleading captain is squeezing out kids
but i'm a failure?
and i'm a fuckup?
i refuse to compromise
i won't succumb to normal life
how do you define success? is it a house-wife and kids?
life is more than a paycheck and a clean credit check
i'm a failure
and i'm a fuckup
maybe i am still a little lost
it just seems like it's all passed.. passed me by
fuck your cookie cutter existance
i may never live up to my potential
but i can always say i stood by my convictions
can you say the same?
this video starts with the same song i just posted above, but the two songs afterwards were noteworthy to me.
"¡LLENO DE GUSTO!"
at Fireside Bowl, chicago, probably 1996 or 97 (i honestly may have been at this show... can't remember)
it's just another lie
shoved down your fucking throat
white tan models, tan white teeth,
this is freedom? i want to scream 'Yeeagghh!!!'
you'll never be welcome here
unless you're addicted to the american dream
i want to scream 'Yeeagghh!!!'
Lleno de gusto!
under... control... you'll never pull yourself up your
mind... numbed... you'll never see it coming
body... broken... you'll never even fight it with your
spirit... shackled... you'll never raise your voice in protest
and you'll never quit until your' fucking dead.
once upon a time the irish were the dogs
and so much slag for the melting pot
'their eyes leap with cruelty insanity and crime' ***
alas, the country's memory is cut short
and second and third generations
swallow the same nativist bile that killed their ancestors
i'm sick of this 'wall off the country' shit.
unless you're a native american you're a hypocrite.
a homogenized culture of stolen names
and someone convenient to take the blame.
*** attorney general of the united states A Mitchell Palmer, 1919.