Our Corner of the Rock 'n' Roll Life
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on the 2005 WBCN Rock 'n Roll Rumble, which just ended.
The WBCN Rock 'n' Roll Rumble - or "Rumble at the Rat"
as it was often called in its first two years when it was co-sponsored by WBCN-FM and the Kenmore Square club, the Rat (Rathskeller)
By the mid-1970s, the Boston area's underground rock scene was well on its way toward being reborn. The original Modern Lovers and the Sidewinders may be thought of as forerunners of this new rock community. In addition to Willie Alexander2 and the Boom Boom Band, some of the early groups were DMZ, the Infliktors, Mickey Clean and the Mezz, and the Real Kids.
Steve Morse of the Boston Globe called 1979's debut competition "nine nights of exhilarating grass-roots rock."3 The Rat has since closed, the competition's venue has changed several times, and the Rumble has had its ups and downs. But it has shown renewed vitality in recent years.
The 2004 WBCN Rock 'n' Roll Rumble contestants are set to include Black Helicopter, Jake Brennan and the Confidence Men, Charms, Dents, Every Forty Seconds, Fooled by April, Ad Frank and the Fast Easy Women, Iluminada, The Information, Jabe, Meat Depressed, Model Sons, Orange Island, Paranoid Social Club, Raymond, Redletter, Brett Rosenberg, Roxie, Seemless, So and So's, Spaceshots, Stoic, Sugabomb, Throe.
Jake Brennan and the Confidence Men, the Dents, and the Brett Rosenberg Problem (wildcard) advanced to the finals.
2003: Dresden Dolls
The 2003 WBCN Rock 'n' Roll Rumble contestants were Absolve, Apollo Sunshine, Baby Strange, Blackstone Valley Crew, Boxingwater, Donnybrook, Downbeat 5, Dresden Dolls, Elcodrive, Favorite Atomic Hero, Godboxer, Good North, Halogens, Blake Hazard, Heavy Stud, Kimone, Kingsize, Labb, Placer, Read Yellow, Reverse, Rocktopus, Suspect Device, Three Day Threshold.
Apollo Sunshine (wildcard), Baby Strange, and the Dresden Dolls advanced to the finals.
The 2002 WBCN Rock 'n' Roll Rumble contestants were All the Queen's Men, Auto Interiors, Averi, Calendar Girl, Chauncey, Crash and Burn, Damn Personals, Gentlemen, Give, Hazie Maze, House of the Almighty, Jaded Salingers, Lost City Angels, Loveless, Major Major, Mappari, Milligram, Mishima USA, Mr. Airplane Man, Munk, Quitter, Spookie Daly Pride, Throne, Meghan Toohey Band.
The Gentlemen, Mr. Airplane Man (wildcard), and Quitter advanced to the finals.
The 2001 WBCN Rock 'n' Roll Rumble contestants were AM Stereo, Banjo Spiders, Bleu, Decals, Diecast, Euonym, Flynn, Francine, Freezepop, Gage, Garrison, High Ceilings, In Out, Jericho, Johnny Wishbone, Junction 18, Kings of Nuthin', Kitty Kill, Lamont, Pennywheel, Reach the Sky, Say Hi to Lisa, Slater, and Vigilantes.
Bleu, Cracktorch, and the Kings of Nuthin' (wildcard) advanced to the finals.
The 2000 WBCN Rock 'n' Roll Rumble contestants were Big Bad Bollocks, Caged Heat, Colepitz, Darkbuster, Dragstrip Courage, Dubnicks, Every Second, Fly Seville, Godboy, Helicopter Helicopter, Long Distance Runner, Missing Joe, Mission, NOK, Psychotic Larry, Random Road Mother, Rock City Crimewave, Rocket Science, Scarlet Haven, 7th Rail Crew, There, Waltham, Wide Iris, and World Is My Fuse.
Darkbuster, Rocketscience (wildcard), and Waltham advanced to the finals.
1999: The Sheila Divine
The 1999 WBCN Rock and Roll Rumble contestants included Baby Ray, Big Lick, Brass Monkeys, Canine, Cave-In, Cheerleadr, Control Group, Drexel, Fastbreak, Halfcocked, Gangsta Bitch Barbie, Honeyglazed, Jumprope, Kicked in the Head, Lunar Plexus, Ms. Pigeon, Quick Fix, Raging Teens, Red Eye 9, Senor Happy, Seventeen, Sheila Divine, Shods, Superhoney.
Halfcocked (wildcard), the Sheila Divine, and the Shods advanced to the finals.
1998: Ghost of Tony Gold
The 1998 WBCN Rock and Roll Rumble contestants included American Measles, Betty Goo, Betwixt, Big D and the Kids' Table, Big Wig, Ducky Boys, Full Powered Halo, Ghost of Tony Gold, Inhale Mary, January, Lockgroove, Max, Mindflow, My Favorite Relative, Piebald, Pistola, Racketeers, Sameasyou, Shyness Clinic, Star Ghost Dog, Tugboat Annie, Ultrabreakfast, Vic Firecracker, and Wicked Farleys.
The Ghost of Tony Gold and the Vic Firecracker Trio advanced to the finals.
1997: Amazing Royal Crowns
The 1997 WBCN Rock and Roll Rumble contestants included Amazing Royal Crowns (since renamed the Amazing Crowns), Boy Wonder, Bright, Cast Iron Mike, Cherry 2000, Chevy Heston, Count Zero, Delta Clutch, Eight Ball Shifter, Five Seconds Expired, Laurie Geltman Band, Lincolnville, Mudhens, One of Us, Pills, Rosemary Caine, Scissorfight, Ramona Silver, Red Time, Splashdown, Standing on Earth, Sterlings, 3 1/2 Girls, and Verago-go.
The Amazing Royal Crowns and Ramona Silver advanced to the finals.
The 1996 WBCN Rock and Roll Rumble contestants included Bald Guys, Bison, Blauzur, Chelsea on Fire (known today as chelseaonfire), Deliriants, Gravel Pit, Honkyball, Jabbering Trout, Jack Frosting (one of our favorite band names), Jocobono, Pie, Plank, Quintaine Americana, Red Telephone, Roadsaw, Skavoovie and the Epitones, St. Chimaera, Thought Junkie, Trona, Turkish Delight, Ukla, Underball, V-Card, Jules Verdone.
Quintaine Americana and Trona advanced to the finals.
1995: Doc Hopper
The 1995 WBCN Rock and Roll Rumble contestants included Angry Salad, Crawl, Curious Ritual, Curtain Society, Doc Hopper, Elevator Drops, Expanding Man, Fly Spinach Fly, Groovasaurus, Little John, Mistle Thrush, Nana, Otis, Planet Be, Planet Jumper, Pooka Stew, Quivvver, Rippopotamus, sirensong, Slide, Still Home, Syrup, Vehicle Birth, Waiting Cates.
Doc Hopper and Pooka Stew advanced to the finals.
1994: Dirt Merchants
The 1994 WBCN Rock and Roll Rumble contestants included Blair's Carriage, Cold Water Flat, Courage Brothers, Dirt Merchants, Gingerbutkis, Groove Butcher, Hartwell, Headcleaner, Kudgel, Machinery Hall, Merang, Mung, Opium Den, Pods, Scotch, Sextiles, 6L6, Slughog, Smackmelon, Squid, Stickmen, Tacklebox, Thumper, Jennifer Trynin Band.
The Dirt Merchants and 6L6 advanced to the finals.
1993: Cobalt 60
The 1993 WBCN Rock and Roll Rumble contestants included Augusta Furnace, Brave New World, Chloe, Chuck, Cobalt 60, Dante's Grin, DDT, Dreams Made Flesh, Facts About Rats, Fleshflower, Flying Nuns, Grind, Jigsaws, Laurels, Malachite, Mercy Beat, Mr. Stone's Country, Pipes, Restless Souls, Sextons, Tree, Sidewalk Gallery, Thinner, Twisted Roots.
Cobalt 60 and Malachite advanced to the finals.
1992: Big Catholic Guilt
The 1992 WBCN Rock and Roll Rumble contestants included Barnies, Big Catholic Guilt, Braindance, Burnbox, Concussion Ensemble, Crazy Alice, Fighting Cocks, Hotbox, Letters to Cleo, Morphine, Orangutang, Paper Squares, Parade, Powerman 5000, Sam Black Church, Sexploitation, Stomp Box, Subterraneans, Swinging Steaks, Trojan Ponies, Uninvited, Vision Thing, Wadi Trip, Zouts.
Big Catholic Guilt and the Concussion Ensemble advanced to the finals.
1991: Seka (later known as Strip Mind)
The 1991 WBCN Rock and Roll Rumble contestants included Bulkhead, Cliffs of Dooneen, Dambuilders, Derangers, Divinity School, Eletrichka, Fertile Virgin, Grand Theft Auto, Hellcats from Outer Space, Jon Finn Group, Laughing Academy, Lazy Susan, Left Nut, Maelstrom, Miles Dethmuffen, Mindgrinder, Nisi Period, Pact, J. Rubin and Bohemian Love Fest, Seka, Still Life, Storm Window, Uncle Betty, Wrecking Crew.
Seka and Uncle Betty advanced to the finals.
1990: Slaughter Shack
The 1990 WBCN Rock and Roll Rumble contestants included Border Patrol, Daisy Chain, Delusions of Grandeur, Drumming on Glass, El Caminos, Ex-Girlfriends, Gigolo Aunts, Gingerbread Men, Green Magnet School, Hollow Heyday, Immortals, Joe, Miranda Warning, Nor'easters, Scatterfield, Slaughter Shack, Talking to Animals, Voodoo Dolls, Vow of Silence, We Saw the Wolf, Who Be Dat?, Whoville, Miss Xanna Don't, Zug Zug.
Slaughter Shack and Talking to Animals advanced to the finals.
The 1989 WBCN Rock and Roll Rumble contestants included Anastasia Screamed, Bags, Big Barn Burning, Big Train, Blake Babies, Blood Oranges, Busted Statues, Circle Sky, Common Ailments of Maturity, Happy Campers, Hell Toupee, Kenne Highland, Hullabaloo, Idle Hands, Joneses, Kid Crash, Garr Lange and the Big Rig, Pieces, Premiers, A Scanner Darkly, Slapshot, Two Saints, Ultra Blue, Well Babies.
The Bags and Ultra Blue advanced to the finals.
The 1988 WBCN Rock and Roll Rumble contestants included Bim Skala Bim, Bullet LaVolta, Citizenz, Class Action, Dharma Bums, Dixie Cinema, Dogzilla, Forever 19, Great Divide, Heretix, Incredible Casuals, Lemonheads, Matweeds, Neutral Nation, 1-4-5, One Life, Pat on the Back, Plate o' Shrimp, Raindogs, Runaway Dan, Slaves, Think Tree, Titanics, Tribe.
The Heretix and Tribe advanced to the finals.
The 1987 WBCN Rock and Roll Rumble contestants included Ammo, Big Dipper, Catalinas, Cave Dogs, Childhood, Dr. Black's Combo, Gotham City, Al Halliday and the Hurricanes, Tom Keegan and the Language, Moose and the Mudbugs, Moving Targets, Nova Mob, Powerglide, Rain, Rapture of the Deep, Shake the Faith, Struggle, T.H. and the Wreckage (Tom Hambridge and company), Taint, Tears, Treat Her Right, Unattached, Vasco da Gama, Wickermen.
Childhood and the Rain advanced to the finals.
1986: Gang Green
The 1986 WBCN Rock and Roll Rumble contestants included Bang, Beat Surrender, Blockyard, Body English, Bristols, Buddy System, Capture the Flag, Children of Paradise, Condo Pygmies, Cut 299, Eighth Route Army, Expose, Five, Gang Green, Hearts on Fire, Loose Ties, Not, Oysters, Pulse 8, Semper Fi, True Blue, Visigoths, Volcano Suns, World at Play.
Gang Green and Hearts on Fire advanced to the finals.
1985: Down Avenue
The 1985 WBCN Rock and Roll Rumble contestants included Adventure Set, Ata-Tat, Bamboo Gang, Band 19, Blaros, Chain Link Fence, Dogmatics, Down Avenue, Dumptruck, Fingerpaint, FUs, Holy Cow, Last Stand, Life on Earth, Lowgistics, MX, New Man, O Positive, Rash of Stabbings, Scruffy the Cat, Sons of Sappho, Souls, Underachievers, Vandykes.
Adventure Set and Down Avenue advanced to the finals.
The 1984 WBCN Rock and Roll Rumble contestants included Athens, Axminster, Ball and Pivot, Blackjacks, Breakfast in Bed, Drive, Dub 7 (formerly 007), Gluons, Going Graffitti (formerly Arthur Slick and the Nice Girls), Judy's Tiny Head, Pink Cadillac, Push Push, Red, Reflectors, Rods and Cones, Ron Scarlett, Schemers, Skin, SSD, Those Upstarts,1 Three Hands, Turbines, 2,000,000 B.C., Wild Kingdom.
Dub 7 and the Schemers advanced to the finals.
1. Boston Rock listed Ted Richards Band, formerly Upstarts.
1983: 'til tuesday
The 1983 WBCN Rock and Roll Rumble contestants included Mickey Bliss, Catch, Christmas, Colors, Del Fuegos, Digney Fignus, Drezniak, Jeff and Jane Hudson, Jerry's Kids, Lifters, Lizzie Borden and the Axes, MIAs, Nebulas, New Romance, Phantoms, Prime Movers, Psycho, Radio Novena, Salem 66, Sex Execs, Smegma and the Nunz, Stickball, 'til tuesday, Mike Viola Alliance.
The Sex Execs and 'til tuesday advanced to the finals.
1982: Limbo Race
The 1982 WBCN Rock and Roll Rumble contestants included Angry Young Bees, Dangerous Birds, Dream, Enemy (featuring Charlie Farren), Fire Dept., Foreign Legion, Hi-Beams, Jackals, Johnny A's Hidden Secret, Last Sacrifice, Limbo Race, Chris Martin Group, Mighty Ions, Native Tongue, New Career featuring Audrey Clark, Primary Colors, Primitive Romance, Proletariat, Puppet Rulers, Red Line, Gary Shane and the Detour, 21-645, Wild Stares, Zodio Doze.
The Hi-Beams and Limbo Race advanced to the finals.
1981: Someone and the Somebodies
The 1981 WBCN Rock and Roll Rumble contestants included Art Yard, Balloon, Creamers, Dark, Death in the Shopping Malls, Extremes, Face to Face, Freeze, Future Dads, Junkmail, Tennie Komar and the Silencers, Lines, Modes, Neats, Outlets, Planet Street, Runes, Satellites, Someone and the Somebodies, Stains, Suade Cowboys, Swinger's Resort, V, Young Snakes.
The Dark and Someone and the Somebodies advanced to the finals.
The 1980 WBCN Rock and Roll Rumble contestants included American Teen, Boys Life, Darling, Peter Dayton Band, Eggs, France, Ground Zero, Harlequin, Hot Dates, Hot Tips, Loners, Make, Mirrors, MPC and the Instigators, Names, Nationals, Pastiche, Peytons, Remakes, Shades, Slow Children, Sonics, Third Rail, Trademarks.
France and Pastiche advanced to the finals.
1979: The Neighborhoods
The 1979 WBCN Rock and Roll Rumble contestants included Arion Deuce (or Arion Duce), Charge, Classic Ruins, Dawgs, Harlequin, Hits, Jets, Kid Morocco, La Peste, Lazers (or Lasers), Lyres, Maps, Meltdown, Mission of Burma, the Neighborhoods, Phobia, Reckless, Rings, Streets, Marc Thor, Thrills (later, City Thrills), Unnatural Axe, Vinny Band, Zoo Types.1
La Peste and the Neighborhoods advanced to the finals.
Since this was the first in the series of WBCN-sponsored Rumbles--the Rumble as we now know it--it is worth noting here the membership of the winning group, the Neighborhoods: John Hartcorn, David Minehan, and Michael Quaglia. The 'Hoods was a very special band.1. Thanks to T Max for kindly supplying most of the names of the 1979 WBCN Rock 'n' Roll Rumble bands, as well as for critiquing this page as a whole.
1978: La Peste
The 1978 First Annual Spring Rock 'n' Roll Festival contestants included Baby's Arm, La Peste, Lazers, Mechanics, Stompers, Marc Thor, Thrills (later, City Thrills), Unnatural Axe.1
La Peste and the Mechanics advanced to the finals.1. We have been told by people who were on the scene that the Neighborhoods and Richard Nolan's Third Rail competed in this 1978 battle of the bands. If that is so, then our list of contestants above would be incomplete. Since Third Rail competed in 1976 and the Neighborhoods appeared in and won the 1979 contest, we think these recollections may be close but not quite accurate.
Our favorite Boston rock and roll Web site is Joe Harvard's Boston Rock Storybook. For the Storybook's essential account of the 1978 competition (which
1976: Willie Alexander/Boom Boom Band
The nine contestants in the 1976 Tournament of the Bands at the Club in Cambridge were Willie Alexander and the Boom Boom Band, Back Alley Band, Boize, Fox Pass, High Heels, Infliktors, Marshalls, Pep's Energy, Third Rail.
1981 WBCN Rock and Roll Rumble
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