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Set List - Vic Bondi Still Thinks it’s Fucking Midnight in America

On the heels of the RNC, we had Vic Bondi choose his favorite anti-republican anthems. He also threw in five songs he wrote as well, and why the fuck not? He’s in the best scene in American Hardcore and still hates Republicans.
VB
Κείμενο Vic Bondi

On April 11, 1992 I saw Fugazi in Worcester, Massachusetts. I know this because the master archivists at Dischord have this information on their site, along with the door price (five bucks!) and the opening bands, Grind and Alloy. I have no recollection of Grind, but Alloy left an impression on me. My friend John wrote a fanzine called Extent, and he, along with every other zine editor there, was hellbent on interviewing Fugazi. We spent the 45-minute ride in my rusty black Oldsmobile listening to Shelter and Cypress Hill and thinking up thought-provoking questions that would impress Ian MacKaye. He’d be so blown away that he’d tell Guy to quit (or maybe just stop playing guitar), ask us to join the band, and relocate us to DC, where we’d finish high school and date the girls in Autoclave.

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That didn’t happen, nor did the interview with Fugazi. Ian asked to see the list of questions, then disappeared. He returned a few minutes later and gave an eloquent speech about the questions being well-thought-out (phew!), but better suited for Alloy. He gave us their oral bio, mentioning that Vic Bondi from Articles of Faith and Jones Very was the singer, and that the band had members from Dag Nasty and Uniform Choice as well. Ian slyly omitted that Pat was a member of the sketchy version of Uniform Choice, the one that sounded more like Mötley Crüe than Minor Threat, but we were eager to meet them anyway.

Alloy welcomed us into their backstage room, and it dawned on me that this was the first “real” backstage I had ever been in. There was some fruit laid out, along with starchy towels that smelled like bleach. We had a notebook filled with questions, but weren’t prepared for an interview with Professor Bondi. Vic had taught at the University of Massachusetts Amherst, and we were 17 years old. I don’t remember much about the interview other than Vic telling us that being straight edge had nothing to do with being political. My young brain decided that it was time to argue with this older gentleman, even if I loved his bands. My argument probably equaled something like, “Man, if you don’t support the alcohol and tobacco industries, you aren’t supporting suffering!” Vic pretty much told us we were retards—but really nicely—and we watched the bands and drove home thinking of cool shit we should have said, especially in front of the longhair from Uniform Choice.

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Vic continues to make protest songs, with the reunited Articles of Faith, Report Suspicious Activity, and new band Dead Ending. Over 20 years later, Vic’s still schooling us. On the heels of the RNC, we had Vic choose his favorite anti-republican anthems. He also threw in five songs he wrote as well, and why the fuck not? He’s in the best scene in American Hardcore and still hates Republicans.

Credence Clearwater Revival - “Fortunate Son”

One of the greatest songs about America ever written. Cuts to the heart of the modern GOP, deep with that sense of entitlement. “You do the work and the dying/Because you’re unworthy.”

Public Enemy - “By The Time I Get to Arizona”

Should be out of date. Isn’t. Don’t know why it’s always Arizona for the rich, the racist, and the retired.

Dead Kennedys – “Kill the Poor”

GOP has to love the idea of dropping a neutron bomb on the ghetto. That is, between street sweeps in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Fear - “I Don’t Care About You”

Fear was ironic. Paul Ryan is sincere. Progress since the days of Reagan.

James McMurtry - “We Can’t Make It Here”

Stated simply and plainly, which is why it got all the hate mail. Because nothing is more unwanted than an unwanted truth. And five written by me, the titles speak for themselves.

Dead Ending – “This is a Stick-Up”

Report Suspicious Activity – “Willed Blind”

Alloy—“Just Plain Evil”

Jones Very – “Bastards Win”

Articles of Faith – “New Normal Catastrophe”