It was inevitable that Donald J. Trump, the pussy-grabbing presidential candidate who employed tactics of race-baiting, misogyny and religious persecution to romance his way into The White House, would become the pariah of a Nation. It was also predicted by many familiar with the anti-Reagan underground music movement of The 80s –including myself– that history would repeat itself and a new epoch in punk rock’s political rage against the establishment would begin again.
We sat and waited. No one knew where the sleeping giant would rise.
The wait is over. Portland, Oregon, has the answer:
Calling All Ghosts, Poison Idea’s latest video release, produced and directed by Brett Roberts and Colin Jarrell, is a stunningly controversial visual piece that pays homage to the fictional movie character, Travis Bickle, depicted in Martin Scorsese‘s 1976 film, Taxi Driver. It also makes a nod towards Call of Duty: Ghosts, first-person shooter video game developed by Infinity Ward. Poison Idea, the iconic Portland band who’ve been pumping out undeniably pure DIY punk for 36 years, have delivered a knock-out punch to punk posers everywhere. You Simply cannot watch this video and not be moved.
With the unfortunate pussification of punk rock by the mainstream over the last two decades, where music that was once a tool for social change is now more of a fashion statement for bearded-hipster millennials who like pretty songs, many have argued that Poison Idea “have gone too far”, while others rejoice in what they feel is a monumental return to the attitudes and artistic expressions that put punk on the map in the first place.
Whatever side of the political fence you stand on, one thing is for sure: 2016 has certainly been a year of unending controversies. And by the looks of things, there’s no chance of it stopping any time soon.
As Calling All Ghosts declares, “The signs are everywhere.”