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January 25th, 2012 MATTHEW SINGER | Music Stories
 

Primer: Voodoo Glow Skulls

music_voodooglowskulls_3812VOODOO GLOW SKULLS - IMAGE: Dana Krashin Photography
Formed: 1988 in Riverside, Calif.

Sounds like: Cheech and Chong’s horn-metal novelty classic “Earache My Eye” sped up until the music almost can’t keep up with itself, overlaid with shouted bilingual vocals and repeated for 24 years. 

For fans of: The Mighty Mighty Bosstones, Suicide Machines, Leftover Crack, Blue Meanies

Latest release: Southern California Street Music (2009), the Skulls’ eighth studio album, featuring yet more frantically up-stroked guitar, blurted brass beats and singer Frank Casillas’ guttural hollering.

Why you care: Skacore is an easy genre to ridicule—taking the more lunkheaded aspects of hardcore and outfitting them with hyperactive horns isn’t exactly a path to critical acceptance—but there’s something to be said about a band that genuinely does not give a fuck about what’s cool. After more than two decades of refusing to tweak their music in the slightest, Voodoo Glow Skulls clearly do not give a fuck. At this point, the band is basically the ska-punk Motörhead, putting out albums that don’t deviate one iota from the frenzied cacophony it innovated. Even when fellow travelers the Bosstones went pop and hit it big, the Skulls stayed the course, bulldozing through the ska renaissance and continuing on into the new millennium, never seeming to lift their heads to see if anyone else was still following. There’s something admirable about that, even if the music isn’t always listenable. 


SEE IT: Voodoo Glow Skulls play the Hawthorne Theatre on Wednesday, Jan. 25, with Authority Zero, Skyfox and Rendered Useless. 6:30 pm. $15 advance, $18 day of show. All ages.

 
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