Building on last week’s metalcore-themed Shirt Stains, here is another celebration of the yells and the chugs. This Shirt Stains doesn’t focus on the more traditional hardcore bands like Agnostic Front or Madball. This is all about the full-sleeve tattoos, white belts, girls pants, Zelda haircuts, and bandanas-across-the-face hardcore/metalcore hybrid from the early to mid 2000s. Hey, at least the girls were cute.
Bury Your Dead – Bunk Yard Dog
Bury Your Dead will be playing this year’s New England Metal and Hardcore Fest. Tonight if we’re being specific. In their prime, they appealed to the most basic hardcore meathead imaginable. Breakdowns upon breakdowns with some Jasta-esque shouts. I saw them once around 2005. Vocalist Mat Bruso tossed a football into a living Fight Club of a crowd and said “Whoever has this at the end of this song gets whatever merch they want,” or something to that effect. What ensued can only be described as “the world’s largest non-X-rated fist fest”. Fights continued long after the song ended. Well done, everybody. It was totally worth it, right? I hope whoever got that football picked up this shirt. Gotta make sure everyone knows you’re a winner.
It should come as no surprise then that BYD’s merch should continue the theme of “lowest-common denominator.” Why bother spelling your band’s name out when you could be punching someone in the back of the head? BYD? Shit, that could stand for just about anything. Bloody Yucky Dongs. Big Yellow Ducks. Bag Your Donuts. That’s not the most egregious part though. This shirt was just so overcome by moshitude that it couldn’t even properly space words. Did the font have to be that big? Of course not. Was there any reason to do this? Of course not. Does this shirt make everyone just a little bit dumber? Of course n… well, maybe.
Norma Jean – Norma Scene
Norma Jean never did it for me. Not for any particular reason, they just never clicked. Maybe it was the cutesy song titles that force the bile to the tip of my tongue and my eyes to roll into the back of my head. Regardless of my feelings towards the band, they undoubtedly still have an audience as they’ve recently re-signed to Solid State Records and plan to release their seventh album this year. The band’s 2005 album “O’ God The Aftermath,” which this shirt is promoting, was actually nominated for a Grammy for “Best Recording Package.” I doubt the album would have been nominated if they used the art from this shirt.
Do you like words? Well you better love the shit out of them if you’re going to get this shirt. It has words up, down, in, and out of the wazoo. This shirt knows the best words. Apparently, someone or something was murdered. How do I know? Just a hunch. Different colors, different fonts, random news clippings and pictures, the Wolfman for some reason. It’s all a rich tapestry. Just look at the Wolfman’s face. Even he doesn’t know why he’s there. It’s like he’s mentally repeating “I need the paycheck. I need the paycheck. I’ll go to the titty bar later as a reward. I need the paycheck.” to himself. Maybe Gill Man can get him a temp job at his office. I heard he’s an accountant now or something.
Throwdown – Brodown
For a while, Throwdown was the hardcore band in the mid-00’s. Some liked their in-your-face straight edge message; others liked their in-your-face-bro-ness message. They were primo music for spinkicks, windmills, and elbowing people on the edge of the pit. Then Throwdown decided to become Pantera Junior and are now only semi-active. The shift in sound may have cost the band some fans, but I’d like to think this shirt did more damage.
What do the kids on the internet say nowadays? What even? Yeah, I think that works for this shirt. How is PeteYouAlive supposed to hook up with TammyXSlammy in the back of his ’99 Honda Civic when she’s too busy posting a comment to her Top 8 friends about this dumb-dumb shirt? Is that giant green skull angry? Sad? Gassy? Why is it missing an eye and its teeth? Is this a Faces Of Meth warning? Is it just a giant floating skull with tentacles? When does he get his own anime series? If this is to scale, is the skull almost as big as the Earth? Is that even Earth? Was this design originally for Throwdown or did they pick it out of a design catalog? Oh, Throwdown. Even your shirts feel like a sucker punch to the face.
The Chariot – This Shirt Makes No Damn Sense
The Chariot was the band of former Norma Jean vocalist Josh Scogin, and my feelings towards NJ carries over to The Chariot. They existed and that’s about it, but again, some people really liked them. They broke up in 2013 and Scogin went on to form ’68. Once again the “meh” feelings continue. I guess Scogin gets the hat trick. It’s like the shrugging emoticon was made just for me to describe my thoughts on all of his bands. They’re like half-price appetizers at TGI Friday’s. Yeah it’s cheap and yeah it’s technically food, but it’s not good for you and doesn’t leave a lasting impression. Kind of like this shirt.
I don’t think those are The Chariot lyrics. At least I hope they’re not. Is it supposed to be funny? Political commentary? Was an “I’m With Stupid” shirt too on the nose? Did Solid State have a few leftover shirts from an NRA convention laying around and decided to make the most of it? Does Wayne LaPierre have pit beef with someone? You can tell the band was really proud of this shirt judging by how tiny their name looks. It’s the written equivalent of an embarrassed kid asking someone out for the first time. In the right (or wrong) situation, that shirt will get you all sorts of looks and not because people want to talk to you about music. Donald Trump would hide from this shirt and then have Secret Service throw it out.
Obey The Brave – Obey the FUCK WORD
Obey The Brave is a hardcore/metalcore band from Canada. They’re currently on Epitaph Records, the home of Bad Religion, Social Distortion, and Pennywise. It’s true that Epitaph also has heavier bands like Converge and Every Time I Die, but I always associate them with punk. Gotta go where the kids (and the money) are, right? Hopefully kids save their money and don’t buy this shirt. “Obey The No Heroes Just Fucking Foes Brave.” Yes? No? I’m not sure since that’s not a sentence with actual meaning. Why not put the band name above the saying? Why not under the saying? Why not completely leave the band name out since it’s already on the front? The real brain buster of a saying was just so good that the band needed to cram it right into their name like it was a flavor injector.
This shirt eats soup with its hands. This shirt is a used condom on the side of the road. This shirt’s favorite color is “Mommy.” This shirt downloads albums from bands it doesn’t like just to prove a point. This shirt licks all the bagels in the conference room. This shirt quotes Family Guy on dates. This shirt is on a first-name basis with the people at the walk-in clinic. This shirt keeps applying for jobs at Hot Topic. This shirt takes Megabus because it likes the smell. This shirt already has its Joker costume planned out for Halloween.