Wednesday, September 9, 2015

Scream at the Bowery Electric

Peter Stahl
Vocalist Peter Stahl, his brother Franz Stahl on guitar, bassist Skeeter Thompson and drummer Kent Stax formed hardcore punk band Scream in 1981 in Bailey's Crossroads, Virginia. The band fit easily into the burgeoning hardcore hotbed in Washington, D.C. Scream recorded five studio albums before disbanding in 1990. Among the band's many personnel changes, Dave Grohl played drums in Scream for three years, then graduated to Nirvana and the Foo Fighters. Scream has reunited briefly several times, and some of the performances have included Grohl. Scream's present lineup includes the four original members plus guitarist Clint Walsh. The band's most recent studio album is Fumble, which was recorded before the band's initial break-up but released in 1993.

The Bowery Electric continues to attract hardcore punk reunions, and Scream was the most recent acquisition. Scream started rather tamely tonight with vocals-centered songs, but quickly raced into its signature sound -- direct political and social messages played at warp speed and savage intensity. Scream revisited the beauty of early hardcore music, before the scene merge with thrash and later grunge. Scream kept the vocals up front, hence maintaining pop melodies as the hierarchy of the set. Meanwhile, the musicians behind the singer offered a thick wall of power chords and sonic blasts. In the 1980s, Scream was on the innovative side of punk by incorporating reggae and mid-tempo songs, and tonight the band recalled all of these threads. Scream is no longer on the forefront of a hardcore revival, but a show like tonight offered perspective and historical context to a sound that might never die.

Visit Scream at