Tuesday, May 26, 2015

AntiCurrent Video Archives Vol 3: Social Distortion- 1983 Practice Session

This is the third edition of the "AntiCurrent.com Video Archives" a collection of rare, out of print, or unreleased videos that I've chose to release through my blog. Click here to view a list of all past releases.

Orange County: Early 80's
Classic OC Bands Playing
in Los Angeles
The Orange County music-scene in the early 1980's is without a doubt, my favorite era of punk rock. To be young and witness bands like The Adolescents, TSOL, and The Vandals playing in backyards, living rooms, and small shitty clubs is something I will eternally be jealous of not experiencing. It would have been amazing to have actually been a kid of The Black Hole and witness all of this, but at least we have documentation of these days. The scene eventually moved on. Some of the bands broke up and some became enormous successes, but the scene eventually morphed into something different and left behind only memories and precious little visual documentation.

This video is one of those precious documents.

Social Distortion:
Early Years Practice Video
Mommy's Little Monster
At this time this was shot, the band consisted of Mike Ness, Dennis Danell, Derek O'Brien (also played with D.I. & Adolescents), and Brent Liles (also played with Agent Orange and unfortunately was struck dead by a car in '07). 

This is the Social Distortion lineup that recorded the classic album "Mommy's Little Monster" for 13th Floor Records. The group changed members only months after this at the New Years Eve show when O'Brien and Liles left the band after Ness reportedly accepted Heroin as payment from the concert promoter.

Bootleg History:
Social Distortion Early Years Practice Video
Flipside Vol 1
The legend behind this video is that it was shot by Peter Landswick, Al Kowalewski, and Holly Duval Cornell of Flipside Video Fanzine at Pulsar Sound Studio in Fullerton, CA in March of 1983. It opens with their manager Monk (who can be seen throughout the classic documentary "Another State of Mind") as he introduces the band. The video was shot for "Flipside Video Fanzine Vol 1" but only a few of the songs were released on it. This is the complete video that I got off of Ebay in the mid-2000's from Monk himself (or at least someone on it claiming to be him).

*EDIT 7/9/16: According to a YouTube user, it was Dave Brooks of Charged Video that shot this.

This Release:
Social Distortion Early Years Practice Video
Cover that came W/Original
Bootleg DVD
Pieces of this performance has surfaced on YouTube throughout the years, however this is the first to showcase the entire performance. The person that sold this to me via Ebay claimed to have captured it directly from the original VHS tape itself and due to its extremely high quality (in regards to early 1980's VHS video) I have no reason to doubt that.

I brought the original DVD rip into Premiere, upconverted it to 1080p, corrected the color, slightly sharpened it, removed many of the unwanted VHS tracking effects seen on the sides of the screen, and deinterlaced the footage. The result is pretty damn spectacular considering the age of the tape.

Final Word:
VHS quality deteriorates quickly in comparison to film and digital media, but in the 80's film was expensive and digital wasn't even a word thought to be associated with video. It's quite remarkable that we have VHS bootlegs in such amazing quality as this and we should be making every effort to capture them to digital before they deteriorate further. This bootleg series is my little contribution to that. I hope you enjoy this truly unique performance.

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