Monday, June 29, 2015

Who are they?

PART OF A TRIPTYCH OF A LOCAL BAND, shot for NOW magazine some time in the mid-to-late '90s. The band's name, alas, lost to time. A timeless look, really, and one that a band with a suitable sound - anything from sloppy '70s hard rock to retread punk to cock rock metal with a blues overlay - could slip into like an old slipper.

While there's a point before which you probably couldn't find a band that looked like this (1976, perhaps, if you weren't called The Stooges,) it's a sure thing that in some town, in every year subsequent to that you'd find some band sporting a variation of this look. In some years - 1978, 1987, 1992 - you would likely find dozens, even hundreds.

Some bands presented themselves to my camera at NOW with a blandness or halfhearted generic attitude that made the shoot work, which usually meant putting them in shadow or out of focus, or buried in some larger landscape. A band like this, however, did most of the work for me, and all I needed to do was find a suitably flat band of light and background to let them pose.

They had their image in hand, even if it was a bit identikit in style, but no one casting an eye over the page with the purpose of looking for something to see that night would be much mistaken about what a band that looked like this had on offer.

(UPDATE: My friend Brian Taylor tells me that this was The Sinisters, a glam-punk outfit that kicked around the city for several years. Sure enough, the Big Ledger tells me I shot them in October of 1997 for NOW.)

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