We Got Power: Hardcore Punk Scenes from 1980’s Southern California

We Got Power

Author: David Markey and Jordan Schwartz
Publisher: Bazillion Points Books
Copyright: 2012
288 pages, hardcover

Why am I even writing another review? I thought my ego was checked enough that I didn’t need my name associated with yet another cool artifact like this book. And I don’t really care to inform anyone of the book and the cultural movement it describes because I like the exclusiveness of it all. So why? I suppose it because even though they may be sold by the foot these days for interior decorating purposes, I still say that books aren’t dead.

I’ve always wanted a time machine to go back to Southern California in 1980, about the time of the Decline movie. The boots, the bandanas, emerging hardcore, Discharge and 999 rolling through on tours…I spent this time far removed in the Midwest wishing I could step mob deep with other punks. This entire book is dedicated to that whole sunny but dark Poseur, SST, Vex, Wasted Youth, Rip City Skates era that I love. The essay by Red Cross teenbabe Janet Housden entitled Me Vs. The Lord of Dogtown is alone worth the list price and reminds us of the time before skaters and surfers were aligned with punk.

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All editions of the original We Got Power fanzine are also included (it was slick and glossy like Flipside). Dave Markey and Jordan Schwartz lived it and documented it in a 4lb book with nearly 400 rare photos. It’s a beautifully constructed book with that same high quality as the Friedman and Stecyk classics. The eagerly anticipated movie about the infamous Cuckoo’s Nest is a likely companion piece.

Rating 5 out of 5 Oki Dogs

Online Action: bazillionpoints.com
Online Action: wegotpowerfilms.com

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