They’ve got the choke-hold sound, they’ve got the sardonically self-abasing name, and they’ve got Will Killingsworth (a.k.a Will Kill) behind them. PRESKOOL DROPOUTS released their first demo tape at the end of last year and people are still talking about it as a “throwback” to when Boston HxC ran the underground. True, hardcore punk bands have been relatively scarce in this city for a couple of years now. However, several conspicuously lo-fi cassettes have prospered amidst the horde of garage rock and noise-pop one might find at the more frequented underground venues. Savageheads dropped their self-titled EP last year, and it was picked up by a load of small-town labels in the US (and I know their demo tape can still be found at a couple of places in Germany and the UK). It proved that “classic” hardcore was not dead, merely dwindling in its influence. The same can be said of Preskool Dropouts’ demo tape, which is actually more assertively traditional. Taking their name from a track by the F.U.’s off the seminal 1982 compilation This Is Boston Not L.A., the band’s sound is deeply rooted in a trend of hardcore that was self-criticizing, cynical, and bears elements of Crass’s unique sound. I might also throw Green Beret and CREEM (from Brooklyn) in among the other East Coast bands determined to keep the plain-and-simple aesthetic of mid-’80s hxc alive.
Tracks like “No Unity” are explicitly reproachful of hardcore culture (“The funniest joke I’ve heard all year: NYHC is fucking weird”), while stellar breakdowns kick off songs like “Dropout” and “Y Bother,” which are generally critical of misguided kids drawn to the nihilistic allure of the hardcore scene.
You can buy this cassette at Twerp Records, and the demo is streaming on their bandcamp.