Yeahr guys, now here it comes, the announced interview with the young American Oi!'n'R.A.C. band FIGHTING 84 from Southern California!!! I follow their development since some time now and I'm really enjoying it to see and hear them grow much stronger and stronger with every new recorded couple of tracks that they load up. So it was truly a pleasure and a honor for me to get the chance to do an interview with them, yeahr, and you know what, I'm fuckin' proud that they were enthusiastic about it and that I can present this interview here now to you. Damn, I wanted to start to put it up already on this past friday but didn't find the time to get it done, and yesterday I was just too busy with being what you might call 'on the road', so okay, how-ever after ll, 'cause currently and right now the work starts!!! I've done the interview with Brandon of FIGHTING 84, and he's done a fuckin' great job, I mean, the interview is truly a 'must-read', if you know what I mean, and no, I'm not just saying/writing and thinking that because it's a interview that I've done, it's really an outspoken statement of one of a kind!!! So Brandon, THANX A LOT MATE for the great work!!! Keep in touch!!! And to you, the readers, enjoy it and be prepared for some no non-sense talking, here's the real deal!!! Here's what it's all about, REAL LIFE, no cheap talk, no self-proclaimed leftist PC crap, no WP/NS faggot garbage, but just hard work, passion, and giving a fuck about what you might think!!! So go and get it!!! Real Oi!, nothing less but even a lot more!!! CLASS RAGE and PATRIOTISM is REVOLUTION!!! Taking shit from no one!!!
*** 'They fly the trojan banner! Might as well be the sickle & hammer!' ***
*** FIGHTING 84 ***
*** American Oi!'n'R.A.C. from the city of L.A. in Southern California ***
*** 'They fly the trojan banner! Might as well be the sickle & hammer!' ***
*** FIGHTING 84 ***
*** American Oi!'n'R.A.C. from the city of L.A. in Southern California ***
01.) Hey guys, first of all let me thank you for doing this interview, and yes, I'm a 'little bit' proud of it, not at least because I haven't found any interviews with you so this might be a little bit of something like a premier;-). So tell us something how things are looking these days in the FIGHTING 84 camp, everything's fine?!?
No thank you Andy for wanting to do this interview with us, it's very much appreciated. First off, yeah, it's pretty much a premier of our band, hich we're glad some people (like you) actually like *laughs*. FIGHTING 84 is doing well, just practicing and fixing up our songs. We're hoping to do a split with some bands in the coming months, so look out for that!
02.) I just know about your MySpace profile and that's not giving us so many informations about you as a band and you guys in the band. Maybe we start with the introduction of you, tell us some 'classified informations' about you guys in the band (age, hobbys, work/jobs, family, band experiences before starting FIGHTING 84, who's playing which instrument, etc.) and from where do you all know each other.
Well I'm Brandon (20) the guitarist, our drummer's Jeff (20) and our bassist is Bridget (21). Myself and our drummer have actually known each other for a long time, and we both met our bassist in school (in between ditching and running amok in our part of shitty Los Angeles county). Well our past band experiences are pretty much non existent, we are pretty young and determinded to get our music to like minded people who enjoy to listening to raw music, without the PC labels and bullshit 'Let's Get Along!' crap songs you hear now a days.
03.) You're a pretty new or young band, so I won't spare you the official interview standard question about the history of you as a band. So, please tell us your bandhistory right from the start on to the present day. Ah, and what had been the reasons for you to start the band? The word's up to you right now;-)!!!
FIGHTING 84 began towards the end of last year 2009, just because we were tired of all the crap music, and lack of anti-commie music coming out of L.A. The music scene all together in Los Angeles is crap, there's only the left wing here, we'll be glad to take up a spot in the small RIGHT wing section for L.A. bands.
04.) What I'm asking myself right from first looking at your MySpace profile: What's the meaning of or behind your bandname?!? Who or what is or was the FIGHTING 84, what's the (maybe historical?) meaning behind it (if there is at least any meaning behind it)?
We've actually been asked that before, and it's actually a simple answer: We got it off a patch I (Brandon) found in a military store when I went in to buy a new bomber. (Told you it was short, *laughs*.)
05.) You're coming from Southern California, but from where directly? What is there to tell about the scene of Oi!, Streetpunk, Punkrock, and Hardcore musick in your hometown area? I think that there had always been some great American Oi! bands coming from California in the past, just to name only the great HEADSTRONG, BOOT PARTY, SOLDIER 76, or PATTON'S LEGION, LONESOLDIER, and the legendary BOVVER WONDERLAND. But I think the mentioned bands are more or less all defunct these days, and beside you there are not that many currently active bands coming to my mind, just maybe BRASSIC. So tell us a little bit about your local or regional scene in these days. Are there any bands, fanzines, distros, labels, etc. that are keeping the spirit alive? Ah, and with all the above mentioned bands, what's your opinion of 'your' California when it comes to American Oi! Oi! music?!?
As I mentioned before the scene in Los Angeles is full of left wing people wearing CRASS shirts and spewing Anarchist bullshit. If you walk down the street with a certain T-Shirt on you could probably catch shit from Punks who think they know everything about a culture they don't even belong to. When it comes to California in Oi! music, obviously we had our fair share of great fucking bands, but till now only a handful are left. We're hoping (over time) to bring Oi! back to L.A. , real Oi!, none of that crap playing around town.
06.) Now let us come to your music: You are playing a very raw and dirty, well paced, old school type of Oi! Oi! Bootboy music sound. If you ask me your influences are coming more from Europe and England , than from the States. Old english Streetpunk and early Oi! and also some early british R.A.C. stuff, and I just have to name the early SKREWDRIVER, especially when it comes to your guitar playing. Am I wrong? What would you say are your main influences and from where do you get your inspirations when you're writing songs?!?
Fucking right on the nose Andy! In writing songs, SKREWDRIVER is actually a big influence. Ian wrote songs for the british people, and never held back, which is exactly what we want to do; music for Americans by Americans. Rock against Communism is just a genre of music that we really grew to like, it's raw and never pulls punshes. Some of the newer Oi! bands would rather cover Reggae songs and sing about fucking dancing all night long, we sing about how this great country is going down the drain to communist bastards disguised as politicians.
07.) What I think is very exciting is that if you're following the moves of your band through your MySpace profile and the posted songs of you, you can really hear and listen to how you're getting better and better from the first recordings of your old songs to your newest song "CLASS RAGE". To have the opportunity to be part of this development is really exciting and a very good thing. Maybe you can tell us something about the process of songwriting, how you are writing your songs, and is there anything special to tell us about your rehearsal sessions, strictly focussed work or alcohol fueled mayhem?
Thanks a lot Andy, yeah I suppose we are *laughs*. Well our first recording was with our first singer and was pretty much a glue and paste job with the song writing and music, that songs are still up on MySpace somewhere, fucking horrible version though (just wasn't afit with our old singer). The writing process really consist of myself just seeing shit day to day, from the fucking yuppies in downtown, to the way our streets are being fucking overrun by illegal immigrants. There is a legal way to come to this country for fuck's sake! Rehearsal's pretty much boring brother, nothing but three people just trying to get the songs (and new ones!!!) a lot tighter.
08.) Now let us come to your (to me well known) songs you've posted on your MySpace profile. Let us start with "FUCK THE REDS". The message is easy to get by the title, or at least I think so, haha;-). But that's just the first impression, 'cause I think it's more 'Fuck off!' song to this whole 'Spirit of 1969' so called traditional Skinhead crap, turning the whole S.H.A.R.P. thing into a radical left wing happening with this whole misunderstood 'tolerance thig' when it comes to doing drugs and other bullshit like that, than a simple 'Commie Bashing' song. Good song with good lyrics, if you ask me. Did I understood it somehow right, haha;-)?!? Are the lyrics influenced by the political divided situation of your local or regional scene?!?
Yeah, the song ("FUCK THE REDS") is more or less a song about the dividing line between the right and the left, there's a part in the song that goes "THEY FLY THE TROJAN BANNER! MIGHT AS WELL BE THE SICKLE AND HAMMER!" which pretty much sums it up. Fuck the spirit of '69, fuch 'TRADITION!', this isn't 1969, and this sure isn't England (not to say we have anything wrong to say about the Brits, but every country has their own way of making this culture there own, and why make it into a rip off version of 40 years ago, when you can make it all your own). The scene in our part of SoCal is pretty much like I had wrote, very PC. If you're hispanic and listen to SKREWDRIVER you'll get your ass kicked, if you're white then you're labeled White Power, if you're black they'd probuably call you a moron. But to us, it doesn't matter, listen to what you like, fuck it if it's SKREWDRIVER, music's music, and tell anyone who fucks with you to go listen to some REDSKINS and fuck off.
09.) Next song would be the angry smasher "ON PARADE". A song about patriotism, troop support and traitors and appeaser-cowards? How is the situation these days in the States? Your president just called the former 'chief-general' of the troops in Assghanistan back home after he had criticised the policy when it comes to the 'War against Terror' and send some new folk at the position that's more well-suiting the concepts of the 'Commander in Chief'. So how is the situation rght now for example when it comes to supporting the troops out there in the fields, and is the ruling policy heavily questioned in the american society? Maybe you can give us an 'inside view' for what you know and based on your opinions?
Well "ON PARADE" is a song about seeing your enemies (you could be used in anyway) marching down your countries street, seeing how they're bringing down your country for the idea of the 'Common Good', it's a song that every American can understand, an enemy who has the masses in it's palms, and the idea that you're the only one that actually see's the truth. In my part of town most people are supportive of the troops, but there's always that strung out Hippie wanna be talking about peace and all that bullshit. As for Obama having a hissy fit, haha, no comment.
10.) My total favorite is your still newest song "CLASS RAGE", no matter if you take the music or the lyrics. I think it's a great combination of very early SKREWDRIVER and some good old American Oi! the californian way of sound (BOOT PARTY, SOLDIER 76, PATTON'S LEGION), just great!!! And the lyrics are also just a great done job!!! You are drawing a very dark picture of the situation of the american society (and especially the hard working middle class) today, being messed around by the ruling policy (that's always nothingmore and nothingelse than the policy of the ruling class, so fuck it up anyway!!!) and being forced to climb down the 'social ladder' again. Even if I think it's basically the same thing in nearly every (western) country and with nearly every (western) society (sadly and fucked up enough), I think it's a very interesting fact because the so called 'Change!' that your president Obama announced to bring to the politics and society of the States seems just to be nothing more than a farce. How is the situation for the middle class in the USA today, tell us about it, and what's your opinion about your current president, his policy and the promises he once gave you?!? Is the "CLASS RAGE" justified and about time?!?
Obama, like every other politician before him, have lied in some ways. Thanks for actually listening to the lyrics, yeah, I was trying to pretty much say that no matter how hard a man or woman works for a better life, they'll never obtain it in the long run, because of the huge gap between the middle and the upper. I think the 'rage' the middle class feels toward the government is genuine in different ways (some shout it out loud, others rather do it in subtle ways). No matter what, if the right wing is in power, the left has something bad to say, and vice versa. You can never win, the middle class will never have that power, because there will never be the one government official who is like us, even after they gain power, everyone has their price, and because of that, we will never win.
11.) Your last song (up and online) is the sick track "LOVE HANDLES", ah, and maybe just you tell us what 'love handles', haha;-)?
Hahahahahahah, well "LOVE HANDLES" was written in about twenty minutes by myself and a friend of the band (Joseph) because we hadn't gotten "CLASS RAGE" down, and just wanted to record. It's actually about our friend Rizzo, and how he's constantly after fa.... woman of a certain size. It's just poking fun at his infatuation with the opposite sex (and the other end of the weight spectrum).
12.) I don't know if you feel comfortable with it, but I really think that you are not only an outspoken but also an political band, simply because the songs I know of you are all dealing with political issues (okay, maybe beside "LOVE HANDLES"). You are also using the R.A.C. genre to describe yourself and also the "Punk's not red!" logo. I could imagine that a lot of people do have some serious problems with that, right?!? Of course, I also had for a long time my serious problems with R.A.C. music. Not because of the anti-communistic stance (that's often more an anti-soviet stance, and that's all fine with me, 'cause I could never understand how one could propagate that the Soviet Union was a good role model for societies to be, even and especially not if you call yourself a communist in any way, because the Soviet Union was nothing but a repressive and dictatorial farce of a state), but because of the strong anti-Semitic and racist stance a lot of these bands are propagating with and through their music. But after some years I started to discover that not all so called R.A.C. bands are White Power faggots and/or NS jackasses. For example the YOUTH DEFENSE LEAGUE once also used the R.A.C. genre for a time to decribe themselves, but always have had a strong democratic stance (defending democracy against the soviet threat, etc.), that was and is light years away from the White Power/NS crap of the later SKREWDRIVER, NO REMORSE, later ARRESTING OFFICERS, and also maybe NEW GLORY, and so on. So what are your experiences with using the R.A.C. genre to describe your music? Do you have had a lot of problems with it (for example when it comes to getting gigs to play), hostilities coming from the one direction and 'making friends' on the other wrong side of the tracks? And what's your opinion to R.A.C. and this whole racist stuff in general?!?
EX-FUCKING-ACTLY!!! Not all R.A.C. bands are NS or White Power. Our drummer isn't white and our bassist and myself aren't full white. Gig wise, we actually haven't played yet, but have already gotten the usual 'warnings' not to play in certain parts, even certain states. The people that have told us not to play, or that we aren't welcome in some parts of town or the U.S. are usually Trads, Commie Punks, SHARPS, even some normal people! As for the reason we chose the R.A.C. label to label us, is just because of the rawness and hatred (not racial hatred, but more class hatred) that some Oi! is missing now a days, especially in L.A.!
13.) A lot of guys do also think that Oi! and R.A.C. should not be mixed together (and of course Ian Stuart Donaldson thought so, haha), what would you tell these guys (after you're using the R.A.C. as well as the Oi! genre to describe yourself)? And what would you tell a stupid jackass that wants to defame you as bunch of fencewalkers?
Fuck everyone! Call us what-ever you want, SHARP's don't like us because we aren't full of anti-racist songs and THE OPPRESSED covers (which we like, well, EARLY OPPRESSED). Punks have said stuff about us, even posting up some shit about 'FUCK R.A.C., LISTEN TO R.A.R.' ('Rock Against Racism'). We listen and play what we want, we'll play a SKREWDRIVER cover and then a fucking TRASHMEN cover.
14.) After these serious political stuff ;-) we will be closer coming to the end of this interview, but there are still one or two questions left on my writing pad. After I already asked you about your local and regional scene I also wanted to ask you what's your opinion about the current American Oi! scene, a positive or a negaive one, and what are bands we should have to know?
Well in parts of the country there's some really good fucking bands, Northern Cali, New York, etc. The Oi! scene has always been divided, from the left and right, from real Oi! to Punk bands who think they are. But speaking to other bands across the country (even down south in Mexico, Brazil and also Europe) are blurring the PC line of what's okay to listen to and what's not, R.A.C. (patriotic music, nationalistic music, NOT NS or White Power) is on the rise, Bootboys in different parts of the world, who fight and live for their country and real football.
15.) So now to the final question, coming to you and your future. What will be next of FIGHTING 84? Some new recordings and maybe a physical release one (hopeully very soon coming) day? Tell us a little bit about your future plans!
Well we are hoping to release two splits with a band over in New York, and another way down south past our borders in the coming months, a full on demo of ours won't be coming out anytime soon though, a year or so till we start focussing on that.
16.) So that's all for the moment from me now. It was a pleasure and a honor for me to do this interview with you and I hope it will bring you at least a little bit more support, 'cause I really think that you're damn deserving it!!! So THANX for doing this interview!!! Also there are still some questions left on my writing pad, but when there are coming some more news from you I will request a next one, be sure, haha:-)!!! So for now the last words remain to you and just keep on the good and passionate work and the spirit alive!!! Keep in touch!!! Best Greetings from Germany!!! Cheers & Oi!, Andy!!!
No thank you Andy!!! We'd love to do a follow up!!! THANKS TO EVERYONE WHO LIKES OUR MUSIC; WE ARE GETTING TIGHTER AND BETTER!!! HOPE TO SEE ALL OF YOU AROUND TOWN SPORTING OUR SHIRTS *LAUGHS*!!! THANKS AGAIN; AND FUCK PC; PLAY R.A.C.!!! YOUR BUDDIES, FIGHTING 84!!!
Folks, that's it for the moment of this strong and proud going young up and coming American Oi!'n'R.A.C. band FIGHTING 84, taking shit from no one and speaking out their mind without any PC garbage or what ever some self-proclaimed bullshit authority wants them to think and say!!! A great and very sympathic and authentic band, full of young and rebellious, militant spirit, yeahr, that' exactly what I was searching for, and that's exactly what I found with and in FIGHTING 84!!! Check the band out, follow their development and be prepared for more to come about and with them in the future here on this blog!!! And, again, thanks a lot Brandon, and keep in touch!!! Oi!