Beastie Boys (the hardcore punk band)

Growing up, I only knew the Beastie Boys’ hip hop / rap stuff. “Intergalactic” was one of the first songs that really got me into listening to music outside of SNES game soundtracks, MODs/S3Ms included in ZIP files of Megazeux worlds, and the stuff that appeared on MTV. Then I got into punk and like to believe I’ve been punk ever since (even though these days I dress like a narc and have more in common with Mitt Romney than GG Allin — “Son, I didn’t sell out, I bought in”). I heard “Mullet Head” ages ago and couldn’t believe it was the same band behind “Body Movin'” and “Intergalactic,” but then again, “Sabotage” always kind of defied classification, some bizarre hybrid of rock, rap, and funk, but super raw, not radio garbage like 311 or Limp Bizkit or whatever else. So imagine my surprise to hear these two EPs. It’s like an alternate universe Bad Brains / Minor Threat. It slays. It’s also nowhere near as commercially viable as their party-rap, so, no wonder it’s taken me this long to hear it. Thanks for clickin’. I’m middle-aged.

Steve Earle – Copperhead Road (1988)

Cool. The lyrics are about this super poor guy from rural Tennessee whose father and grandfather were both bootleggers; he enlists in the military and gets sent to Vietnam, then when he gets back he grows weed and sets booby traps for the Feds using his knowledge he acquired from the Viet Cong. Then an ice dragon named Krallnar visits his marijuana plantation and he defeats the ice dragon using a sword made out of magma, called the FireBlade. I made up the part about the ice dragon. Or did I? (Yes, I did.) This song has been described as “alternative country” and “power twang.” Power twang!?