Monday, 13 April 2009

We Versus The Shark Tour Diary Part 15

Fifteenth Installment: The Writing Is on the Wall (13/04/09)

It will strike you very occasionally when you're traversing the post-antebellum South: there was a war here. The remnants exist in more psychic tones than anything else; the de facto world of separatism and privilege that permeate every stretch of American soil, North or South. The wounds in Europe, it's safe to say, are fresher.

Our first night in Germany, I talked with a kid who is the singer of a "beat-down" hardcore band. He brought it up before I even thought of doing so. In broken English, he basically expressed the following: he feels terrible for his country's history ("How could you not?" he said), but it had nothing to do with him. And walking through the halls of the DIY spaces and squats we've played in Germany and Poland, there's a clear sense of a rejection of history, and a determination to set a record straight: it's a youth culture saying, "this had nothing to do with us."

All the clubs, all of them, are strewn with anti-Nazi stickers. Anti-sexism and homophobia, too. It reminds me, really, of going to punk shows when I was in middle school. It reminds me of American punk rock before politics fell into the realm of the unfashionable. Going from country to country, day by day, it's hard for me to piece it all together cohesively, how it feels to be here – how it feels to walk around a former ghetto in Krakow, or being bowled over by the punk space/political library/kindergarten in Dresden that is almost entirely subsidized by the government. My camera keeps dying. There's no time to reflect. I am going to have to come back.

Jeff Tobias, We Versus The Shark. Blog courtesy of Flagpole Magazine: Colorbearer of Athens, GA Star Power!

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