I had mentioned in our previous post, Mess With Texas SXSW 2011 Photos, that OFF! was one of the best performances at the event. It was our second time catching them live at SXSW (we also caught them at Emo’s with Bad Brains). If you still don’t know about the hardcore punk supergroup that is, OFF!, you’re either too soft for the genre or just have been out of the loop.
Led by original Black Flag/Circle Jerks frontman Keith Morris, OFF!’s first four EP’s totaled to about 17 minutes but left you with a face-melting impact that lasted for days. Their music is hard, fast and loud with each member killing it on their respective instruments. Drummer, Mario Rubalcaba is extraordinary to watch behind his kit. As he whips out ferocious drum rolls, you can feel the intensity of their music pulse through your body with righteous intonation. Although each song averages under a minute, OFF! kept us captivated with their powerful lyrics and heavy instrumentation. With monstrous guitar riffs, the crowd could not get enough of their mayhem. Dust clouds quickly took over the pit and fans began to proudly mosh and float across the sea of people to a sound and ideal that had been lost but now revived through OFF!
Morris sure knows how to work the crowd with his enticing stage presence. Spewing words of wisdom, during and in between sets, it’s easy to understand how people look up to this man. He’s intelligent and punk as fuck. Before their set, he took the time to introduce a friend of his on stage who is a children’s storybook writer. I wish I could remember the dude’s name because the story he read us was adorable and an endearing prelude to OFF!’s heavy set.
OFF! has with out a doubt brought back the ideology and righteous vigor of American hardcore punk at a time when music has become so broad in genre yet monotonous (at least in sound) all at the same time: and the people are loving it. Whether indie kids or hip hop heads, fans from all scopes of the music spectrum have embraced OFF!
Check out our photo gallery below of OFF! at Mess With Texas party (SXSW).
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Words & photography by Sandra Burciaga