Through Time and Sound pt 4: 1998
1998. I was 18, starting my senior year of high school. I had a job at the comic shoppe still. Now I was developing a pretty strong taste for punk rock music. My friends were turning me onto bands like Operation Ivy, Suicide Machines and Nerf Herder. That year my friend Joe Posten and I were working in the Deptford Mall together on Friday nights. Joe turned me onto Joe Jackson. Even though the album itself Look Sharp! came out in 1979, it was certainly my soundtrack to 1998.
I was hanging out in pool halls, and comic shops. Joe Jackson was like life advice for a guy trying to find his place in the word, especially one as cynical as myself. I know it’s hard to believe, but teen angst even gripped hold of the Rocker Tycoon. Joe covered all the topics: What to wear, trouble with women, topics of the day, and he still had time to crack a few jokes along the way.
This year I also picked up Rancid’s Life Won’t Wait. This record changed my life. It was ground and pound rock and roll. I had been searching for a band I could think of as a timeless favourite. Cross that existential search off my list. This was the kind of Music that you could fall down a flight of stairs to. From start to finish this is still one of my favourite albums. Every single song was great. Top five tracks were Leicester Square, Bloodclot, Wrongful Suspicion, Coppers and Black Lung. If I thought about that for more than a few seconds I’m sure it would change to five totally different songs. I also realize that this album was the black sheep of the Rancid Discography when it came out, but there was something there that was so much more than a street punk album. It was political without being preachy, hard without being caustic, and fast without being blazing. This is an album going 70 in a 65, and that’s why it prolly fell under the radar.
So that this time I was just really getting into comics hardcore. My friends at the shop were showing my books like Preacher and Sandman. But I was also reading a book called the Art of Deception. It was a book on argument. More specifically, it was a book about how to use logic to defeat an opponent. I bought this book solely for one reason: To annoy the piss out of anyone who would dare contradict me. And it worked well. I was almost shunned by all my friends within weeks. Take my advice DONT READ THIS BOOK. Also do not mistake this book for THE ART OF DECEPTION by Kevin Mitnick, Which is a lovely Social Engineering book I read in 2001. I’ll go into that later on!