“Many hold the Middle Class up as probably the first American hardcore band, which basically meant playing faster downbeat tempos than the first wave of 'Hollywood' proto-hardcore bands like the Germs and the Bags. . . They certainly pre-date Bad Brains and the D.C. straight-edge Dischord scene with that one, despite how it seems to have been erroneously recorded elsewhere . . they were definitely a major, uncredited Hollywood-to-OC segue band during 1978. . . . The Middle Class is Exhibit A in the case for affirming that openly suburban teen bands like the Zeros (San Diego County), F-Word (Covina) and the Middle Class (Orange County), young bands not pre-fabbed and controlled by Kim Fowley and Rodney Bingenheimer; non-fashion bands who didn't dress or look the part of archetypal Britpunkers, were in fact very much included in the earlier 'Hollywood' punk scene. I say this because I feel strongly that the old scene that coalesced around the Masque has been falsely stereotyped by a famously documented South Bay hardcore band with a revisionist agenda who has repeatedly dissed us geezers as elitist and exclusionary to bands simply because they came from the 'burbs . . . or didn't 'look the part' of fashionista punks.
Wednesday, July 30, 2014
The Middle Class "Out of Vogue" Advertisement May 1979
I don't think I have seen this full color print ad reproduced since 1979 so a great excuse to revisit this seminal record from 1978. The eminently quotable Brendan Mullen on the Middle Class in a 2002 profile of the late and much missed Mike Atta: