The Exploited

The Exploited

Total Chaos, The Mansfields

Sun Sep 09 2018

7:00 pm

$20.00 - $22.00

This event is all ages

The Exploited
The Exploited
Riot starting, bouncer bashing, cop baiting, hotel trashing, foul talking, noise making, chaos causing, venue wrecking, government hating, rule breaking, piss taking, unrelenting, punk rocking…. Clearly we're not talking about Pepsi adverts here, or indeed the many so-called punk bands that would gleefully sell themselves to such corporate giants for a palm full of silver. Whoo-hoo! The taste of a generation! Fuck off! Let's get one thing straight: The Exploited are not 'punkers' or any of the other cutesy, watered down, MTV friendly names you might want to call them.

The Exploited are punk rock.

But maybe we should put that into context since it means so many different things. It's early 1980 and 'entertainment' on a Saturday night (or any other night of the week) consists of sitting around at home watching crap on TV or sitting around in a bus shelter drinking cider or sniffing glue. Unless, of course, you're old enough to drink in the same pub as your dad. Oh the thrill of it all! Punk rock is all you have. It's your lifeblood, the only thing that makes sense and the only thing to look forward to in a world with 'no future'. And it's fucking exciting! The next single, the next gig, the volume coursing through your veins to remind you that you're alive. Punk rock is a dangerous business. The mere act of looking like a punk will earn you a night in casualty if you're not careful, and getting to and from one of the few venues that will let punk bands play can literally be a matter of life and death. So, you can cop out and be a part time punk (flatten your hair down for school, work or more likely the dole queue) or follow whatever trend you're told is 'in' this week. The other option, the only other option, is to give to punk rock what it has given to you…everything! If you're going to be unemployed, then be unemployable! If you're going to get beaten up, then go down fighting! If you've got something to say, then shout it! And most of all, if you're going to be in an obnoxious punk rock band, then be in a really obnoxious punk band!

This was the route chosen by ex-squaddie Wattie Buchan (vocals), Big John Duncan (guitar), Dru Stix (drums) and Gary McCormack (bass). Right from the start (early 1980, if you were paying attention) there was no toning these Edinburgh punks down, no diluting their music for public consumption. The Exploited were punk rock.

Released just one year later on the Secret label, their debut album was as much a rallying battle cry as a record. It was called 'Punk's Not Dead' and went on to become the number one independent album of 1981 (before most of the Indies were just majors in disguise), reaching number 20 in the national charts and selling 150,000 copies. Which kind of proved the point. If punk was dead, no one had told the Exploited's rapidly growing 'barmy army'. And while admittedly, 'Punk's Not Dead' wasn't the greatest record ever made, as an opening gambit it was unbeatable and live, the band were nothing short of incredible. The long hot summer of '81 saw the whole country going up in flames. Real anarchy in the UK as city after city, town after town exploded! A perfect time for the Exploited to co-headline the legendary 'Apocalypse Now' tour with fellow punk giants, Discharge. The sell out London show (at the Lyceum Ballroom) took place just one day after the Brixton riots. Talk about an electric atmosphere!
By October that year The Exploited were in the singles charts with the violently evocative 'Dead Cities', leading to arguably the most ferocious performance ever seen on Top Of The Pops (yeah, you read that right! And yes, there were numerous complaints) and another massive UK tour. If memory serves correctly, this was the one where Black Flag supported them, the one that ended in a full-scale riot at the Rainbow in Finsbury Park. Or maybe that was another time; certainly it was snowing in the Capital the night and ever demented front man Wattie declared war on the Mods (some idiot had booked the Jam to play just up the road), resulting in a pitched battle outside the venue.

1982 saw the release of the Exploited's first genuine classic album 'Troops Of Tomorrow' (number 17 in the charts), which ten years later was to see tracks (most notably 'UK82' changed to 'LA92') covered by Slayer for the 'Judgement Night' soundtrack. More proof, if it were needed, that without the likes of Exploited, Discharge and GBH there would be no thrash metal and thus, no Metallica, Slayer or Slipknot. It has even been noted that those punk bands influenced such varied acts as Queens Of The Stoneage (whom Wattie presented with a 'Best International Newcomers' gong at the Kerrang Awards in 2000) and Atari Teenage Riot, Nirvana (Ex-Exploited guitarist Big John even played for them briefly) and Massive Attack.
In over two decades The Exploited have been tear gassed by German cops, banned from Holland, arrested in Spain, declared that the Falklands are British forever whilst on stage in Argentina and have caused more carnage than a multi-car pile up on the M1. Throughout that time they have remained steadfastly true to their roots, never selling out, never splitting up (despite numerous line-up changes) and never bowing down. They've been accused of being dumb (yes, sometimes, but wilfully so) and causing trouble (guilty again, but smashing stuff is fun and punks are supposed to be obnoxious). But The Exploited are also fiercely (not to mention bluntly) socially and politically aware, covering everything from the Criminal Justice Act to the increasing use of Big Brother CCTV and never wavering from their anti-authoritarian, anti-war stance. And while a critic once suggested they were stating the obvious (politicians are liars and war is bad), someone is still voting for the fuckers and we seem to be on the brink of World War Three. Someone should be shouting about it for Christ's sake! And no one shouts louder than The Exploited! Who else would have the nerve to drown a Tory politician in their video (for the title track of their '96 masterpiece 'Beat The Bastards') or repeatedly refer to Maggie Thatcher as a "fucking cunt!" ('Maggie').

So we face the start of another New Year and nothing has changed. The country's still fucked and on the brink of war as America's lapdog, bored kids still wander the streets (smack and designer labels having replaced glue and cider) and The Exploited are just as relevant today as they were in 1980. Punk rock has come to mean so many different things to so many different people. Like an incurable virus the genre has infected the whole world, evolving, mutating (often beyond recognition) and contaminating everything that gets in its path. Fashion, art, comedy, politics and of course, music have all been irrevocably altered by punk rock. Christ, even football got in on the act… a mohican haircut we're told, is now called a Beckham.
Not bad for something that has been pronounced dead more times than Dracula. But to The Exploited punk rock still means everything.

"Fuck The System' their eighth studio album sees the band on more explosive form than ever, riotous, unrepentant and wholly uncompromising. Tracks like 'Never Sell Out' and 'Chaos Is My Life' (both self-explanatory) are as brutally heavy as anything bands half their age have to offer and prove beyond doubt that, not only is there life in the old dog yet, but the fucker's got rabies! 'Fuck The System' isn't just an album title; it's a statement of intent. But then, it is a punk rock album, and make no mistake.

The Exploited are punk rock!
Total Chaos
Total Chaos
over 28 years ago (Sept.-Oct. 1989) in Pomona Valley, CA was the birth of Total Chaos. Created out of the desperate need to save a dying genre of punk rock- during a time that the market was saturated with a more commercial new style. Along the side of a dedicated few other bands who believed in the dying genre and all that it represented- to them it was not only music- but a forum- to convey important political and social views. Total Chaos along with many others started organizations such as- UVP(United Valley Punks) OCP(Orange County Peace Punks) and AGC (Alternative Gathering Collective)- holding social events like- Food Not Bombs- giving support to the Big Mountain Indian Reservation and helping to open the Los Angeles Anarchist Center. The idea of social responsibility was a significant thing- from organizing peace punk picnics- to protesting against the Gulf War- their music had meaning and stood for something. In 1991 Total Chaos recorded their first demo- which led to their first 7 inch in July of 92 Nightmares(a live recording). In March of 93 they put out their first full length album Were the Punks- to promote the record they did shows around California- during that time word of the album reached Mexico City- leading to an offer to do a full Mexico tour with a band called the Yaps. With mostly sold out shows-the tour was deemed a success. Between sold out shows in the U.S. and Mexico- interest hit lead guitarist of Bad Religion and the owner of the biggest punk label in the world Epitaph Records Bret Gurewitz. Leading to the signing of the band in Sept. 93, Which allow them to reach the masses and help to bring back there Style of Music. (shortly after Gary Doom left the band and was replaced by Ron Mc murder) By Jan. of 94 the band was in the studio recording Pledge of Defiance still to this day being the hardest most political controversial album ever put out by Epitaph records to date. Total Chaos did 2 full U.S. tours- one of them being with the Mighty Mighty Bosstones with riots in some cities and states- clearly showing the impact of the message and the power of the response by the fans. Returning from tour the band went back into the studio to record, but while in the Studio Ron Mc murder was replaced due to hardcore Drug use- so (old friend of the band)Shawn Smash was hired- leading to a masterful collaboration- ending with the creation of Patriotic Shock. They hit the road in June of 95 with the legendary Battalion of Saints in many shows- because of Total Chaos- strong anti- racist material and social political message- made the tour not easy- with national racists organizations showing up at every show, many death threats, even the album being banned in Japan- regardless of all the opposition, they did not falter and the message was still being expressed. In the summer of that year the band does their first European tour- which was bigger than anyone expected- with sold out gigs all across Europe- ending up at the legendary Chaos Days in Hanover, Germany. Not schedule to play (the police would not allow it) but lucky because of a folk rock festival (The Harvest Festival) that was playing in a local park- where swarms of punks met to later attend the Chaos Days- discovered the bands arrival and literally threaten the promoter- with violence and destruction of property if the band was not allowed to play (amazing fans)- so they played- with one of the band members (Shawn Smash) German-fluent in the language- spoke - stating Lets Riot as the intro to the legendary song Riot City- unfortunately the riot cops showed up right after the song and the literal Chaos Days begun (the show made national headline news throughout the world). Shortly after returning to the states “Gearbox” left the band due to family problems- being replaced with “Suzy Home wrecker”- the band decided and after 3 hardcore albums they would choose a more classical style of 70s/OI! punk rock record- leading to the creation of Anthems form the Alleyway. Again to promote- the band headed out for a full U.S. and European tour- shows were completely sold out. By 97 the contract with Epitaph was up and negotiation for resigning due,- while recording new demos for the new album- the owner of Epitaph- “Bret Gruewitz” disappeared for 6 months and reappeared in drug rehab. Leaving the band in limbo and with a new president of the label Andy - which who the band did not see eye to eye with- lead them to leaving the label in late 98/or they just got booted no one knows for sure even the band - with a legacy of selling more than 150,000 records- unmatched by any in their genre at the time. also in “Suzy home wrecker” was kicked out because of heavy drug use and “Danny boy Virus” joined In by early 99 they agreed to put out 2 limited edition albums (In God We Kill and The Early Years) with Cleopatra records and hit the road for promotion with Blanks 77. After the tour was completed in 2000- they did their first Japanese tour and right after went into the studio to record Punk Invasion produced by multi-platinum producer “Jim Faraci”. They put out the album on their own formerly named label Reject Records shortly after “Joe Bastard” left the band after his 4 child was born being on the road was to much for a man with a big Family-so “Todd Trash” replaced “Joe” and the band hit the road for several tours in Europe and the U.S., later to be invited to play the Warped Tour in 2002. After the Warped tour- the original drummer Gearbox returned to the band. By the beginning of 2003 Rob Chaos started to do promotions and bookings for other bands such as The Lower Class Brats, Funeral Dress, Blanks 77, Mike Blanks and the Stads and many more, but at the same time “Todd Trash didn’t work out so he left and the Return of “Gearbox” on drums. In Fall 2003 Rob Chaos went into partnership with Ezzat Soliman owner of the Showcase Theater and Showcase Productions- birthing a new label SOS Records. Because of his strong street credibility- Rob Chaos has been able to procure legendary bands for the label such as The Exploited and Conflict- a quote from Wattie of Exploited after returning to the states after 12 years to do a full U.S. with Total Chaos, the only reasoning why I came back was because of Rob Chaos- a huge compliment from a man and a band that Rob grew up listening to and respects highly. In Nov. of 2003 the band went back into the studio with a new bassist- “Charlie” former guitarist of political hardcore band Life’s Halt - during a crucial time in the United States history- and this is clearly reflected in the bands music- there are strong battle cries all over the album which emerge so intensely- it is not matched by any. The album is entitled Freedom Kills again with strong promotion- Total Chaos has just completed sold out shows with the most legendary bands of all the punk rock genres- from the Adicts to Exploited ( nationally televised riots in Canada- due to border rejection of both bands) to Conflict- setting them apart and displaying their caliber and quality. In 2006 the band Signs to German label (People like you) and puts out a Complication of all the songs over the years and added 7 new tracks as well, at the same Time “Dede” Gearbox wife joins the band on Bass, so the band hit the road in Europe and the tour was a total success, the next year 2 more tours in the USA, Japan, South America, Canada, and Europe, the band went back in the Studio the record (Avoid all sides) at the same time SOS records closed down, so the band signed a new deal with Punkcore records for USA/Canada only and released it in Europe on (people like you) with more tours and even more areas like China, South east Asia, Mexico, south America, the band was on a roll. In 2010 the band went back into the studio to start recording the 10 song album "Battered and Smashed," which was being recorded very slowly (not rushed at all). During this time "Miguel Conflict," from the band Social Conflict, joins the group as full-time bassist, and also switches over to drums when needed. Since then the band has gone on to do tours in Canada, South America, Europe, the U.S. (w/The U.K. Subs), and more coming soon. Recording for the album was finally completed and mixed in March of 2011, and is being released through Concrete Jungle Records, and Stomp Records. So in this new era the message is stronger than ever before- there is a sense of urgency coming from the band- regarding social and political reform- it oozes from their music and is undeniable to any that listen. After 22 years Total Chaos has grown as a band and has seen many come and go- but they have always kept their original ideals of what their genre of music is all about- which hasn’t been proven to be easy- during a time of mirages and deceit. Regardless of what you believe, whether you are pop punk, street punk, hardcore, straight edge, political punk, goth punk, skate punk, crust punk, metal punk, straight punk rock (the list goes on and on)- Total Chaos style of music can unify them all- bringing them back to one scene and that is PUNK ROCK!
The Mansfields
Venue Information:
Black Sheep
2106 E. Platte Ave
Colorado Springs, CO, 80909
http://www.blacksheeprocks.com/