April is international punk month here at MRR (not really, I just made that up) and with that in mind, I thought I'd give you a whole slew of international punk sites to browse so that you can find out about punk rock in exotic and faraway lands. Lotsa interesting stuff here, so enjoy.
First off is a website dedicated to a big punkfest coming up in Sweden on May 30th and 31st. It's called Bollnaspunken 97, and is gonna feature 30 bands or so, over two days. Better yet, it's only gonna cost the equivalent of about 7 bucks USD and camping will be free. In additional, all the proceeds are suppose to benefit anti-fascist organizations. You can find out more about it online (including a list of bands) at http://hem.passagen.se/wigren/bp97.html . A good portion of the site is in Swedish, but part of it has been translated for us mono-lingual types.
The next few web sites I got from Dirk Gomez in Germany. He e-mailed me with a whole bunch of cool international punk links to share. Hell, with help like that, this column practically writes himself. I owe you one Dirk -- remind me to buy you an Oly if you're ever in the states.
Bad Vugum records in Finland has a decent website for their label, which carries some pretty cool art-core stuff. They have an online catalog here, along with homepages for many of the bands on their label including Deep Turtle and Radiopuhelimet. You'll find the Bad Vugum website at http://www.lpg.fi/badvugum/ .
Next on our worldwide tour we head to Israel for the Too Drunk to Punk website (http://22.214.171.124/harel/toodrunk/toodrunk.htm) with everything you ever wanted to know about Israeli punk but were afraid to ask. Cool punk pictures, a list of many Israeli punk bands, links to other punk/HC sites, and other info about the projects that Harel (the TDtP author) is involved in. In addition, Harel has offered limited space for other punk bands to put info up about their projects, so if you're in a band and need some exposure, here's your chance.
Now it's on to Germany for the Ox Onzine online fanzine. This zine has a good start, though it is still my opinion that you should NEVER put up a link on your page to another page that simply says "under construction" (major pet peeve alert!). Anyway, Ox has news, reviews, online Java chat, articles, German concert lists, links, and other stuff related to the world of punk rock. You'll find Ox at http://king.dom.de/ox/ .
There's a homepage for Lithuanian hardcore (proving that the web is certainly getting more and more popular with punks) at http://www.cust.lt/hc/ . It is kind of basic at this point, but does have a bit of information and also includes links to a couple of other Baltic web sites -- Tornis records in Latvia (check it out!!) at http://www.cs.fmf.lu.lv/~sd30060/tornis/ and the Lithuanian punkzine KNK (http://www.soften.ktu.lt/~kaleck/KoksNorsKelias/).
Moving from Europe to Japan, there's a site called J-Underground (http://cs.is.saga-u.ac.jp/laboratory/kusano/irman/bands.html) that has a bunch of stuff about Japanese punk bands, including Garlic Boys, Melt Banana, Copass Grinderz, Hi-Standard, and a whole bunch of others. Also at J-Underground is Kamikaze, a zine about the Japanese HC/Punk scene. This is the best site I've seen dedicated to Japanese punk, which has always excited the spazz in me.
Now, it's off to Latin America to check out the Latin American SkaPunkHardcore bands page (http://sphc.simplenet.com/latin/) which at this point is mostly a list of addresses for Latin American punk bands, labels, etc. though the band section does have links to a dozen or so punk bands from places such as Argentina, Mexico, Peru, and Uruguay. Nice start, and nice to see more of the world represented on the net.
Here are a few stateside sites for you to browse this month (I could give you more European sites, but I really wanted to let you know about the following as well). First up is Kate Cooties site with excerpts from her zine Cooties. There is a ton of information here, and you will spend lots of times reading, looking at pictures, and linking to other places that Kate wants you to see. This is a great example of exactly how a web page should be put together, with a lot of text and interesting stuff everywhere you look. You'll find Cooties at http://www.livenet.net/~cooties/index.htm but beware of girl germs!
The idea strikes me as funny, but there is a site called the Punk Guitar Archive with a bunch of guitar tabs that show you how to play your favorite punk rock tunes. Correct me if I'm wrong, but if a song needs tabs to understand how to play it, then it certainly can't qualify as punk. Can it? They also have a chat feature where you can talk to others logged onto their pages, so if you're just dying to learn how to play an old DK or Germs tune, or want to learn the latest from the McRackins or NoFX, then I suppose this is the place to turn to. You'll find the Punk Guitar Archive at http://www.execulink.com/~rizzard/archive.htm .
Well, that is gonna do it for this issue, and I'm sorry I talked about music so much. I won't let that happen again next month, because as we all know, punk isn't about music. You can e-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org or write me at PO Box 8059; Santa Cruz, CA 95061. As always, all past, present, and future columns are on my web pages at http://www.primenet.com/~hanford/maximum.html . See you next month.
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