Punk rock's political history is pretty convoluted. But by most accounts, the fast-hard-and-loud aesthetic came into vogue during the mid-'70s as a sneering response to the hippies of the '60s and an extension of the hard-partying glam scene. Although obviously rooted in social angst, first-wave punk was less about societal transformation and more concerned with bombastic nihilism. Hence, the popularity of swastikas and Darby Crash's hating on Mexicans in The Decline of Western Civilization.
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But after two decades of arguing (at shows, in zines, and now on the Internet), some of these no-future freaks decided to follow the good example of political punk pioneers such as Crass or Washington, D.C.'s Positive Force collective. The result: Your average cruster is now a vegan anarcho-feminist puppeteer whose favorite means of direct action is the benefit show. And while Churchill's Pub might swing more to the oi-oi Mohawks of the '77 era, this sorta-English pub in Little Haiti will circle the letter A in a distinctly 2012 fashion this Wednesday during a benefit for environmental activist journal Earth First.
Hey ho, Joey Ramone may have been a goofy gluehead, but today's punk rockers are trying to save the world.
Earth First Journal Benefit
Earth First Journal Benefit, with Nunhex, Baker Acted, Testorka, Terra Nulius, Komakozie, and M66. 9 p.m. Wednesday, August 1, at Churchill's Pub, 5501 NE Second Ave., Miami; 305-757-1807; churchillspub.com. Cover costs $5 at the door.