The DIY scene goes hand and hand with the punk scene. Many come in the form of homes turned into venues. A couple DIY spaces are official establishments that cater to a broader range like 924 Gilman and our own local Trunk Space. One of the better ones to pop up was the Rats Ass. The venue since this show has shut down. Although fear not, it has reopened under a new name. Even under the new name, you must “ask a punk” to find the address.
I arrived late due to a failing car battery, so I missed the Ass Wipe Junkies. However, those dudes stuck around and participated in the fun. The Rats Ass had a fantastic vibe and community while I was there. Everyone was about enjoying themselves. They had a barbecue and shared food for all in attendance. Mosh pits seemed to be the regular norm for every band. The limited stage lighting was the only thing that changed my usual no flash approach. However, that turned into a positive for the shots that came out of this.
I did manage to get there in time for one of my favorite locals, We Might Be Wasted. This venue made no difference for the energy they had up there. Actually, Donny embraced the kids wanting to mosh. We Might Be Wasted looked like they enjoyed playing to the younger leaning and energized crowd.
What followed was my first time catching the new form of Manual Sex Drive. It has Monty on lead vocals, and retains the trombone. A little different this time was no drums, replaced with someone on a sound board. This gives it a more industrial feel and sound. Although some of their older tracks are more Rockabilly influenced, the newer stuff is more punk. Manual Sex Drive is starting to stand out more with these changes and I look forward to what is to come.
Last up was the high energy guys from California, Apathy Cycle. Going in I had never listened to the band. These guys went hard and loud. They have an excellent punk sound that the Rats Ass just embraced. The mosh pit was going strong for the entire set. These guys have a sound that I can recommend with ease the next time they come through Phoenix. Knowing that, I can’t wait to see them again at the Phoenix Ska Punk Bowling at the Yucca Tap Room.