YQ was a band from 1985 to 1986 from Catasauqua in the Lehigh Valley.
Larry Deiter, charismatic teenage hero who ran away from home and lived in the little league dugouts for awhile, was the singer. he’d sung in a band called Zero Factor previously.
Tracy Pain played guitar, Bobby Fegley played bass (RIP. he died in a car crash in the 90s) and Roy Mayorga played drums. Somewhere late in their ‘career’ they got Roy Grube from LAST CRY to play bass. (I never saw this lineup…) Mike Gentilcore, local king of LV BMX, played second guitar in an early lineup.
They were from Catasauqua, which kids on the scene used to call Little England. Catasauqua (or Catty) was one of the punkest small towns in America. there were some truly amazingly stacked shows from 84 to 86 there. it was like the Huntington Beach of Pennsylvania; as if Catty High was the PA version of Edison High in HB. And most of those kids were a bit crazed and tough. it was totally Class Of ‘84.
Every other high school in the LV had maybe 5 or 6 punkers each. but at Catty High it seemed to me like every single student was a punker, or at least wouldn’t give you shit for being a punker. i mean i would go to the Catty High dances with Larry Deiter and Story from The Complaints and hang high up in the bleachers with the punkers. I never even thought of going to a dance at my own high school in Bethlehem! I mean fuck, that thought gives me shivers.
By the early 80s for some reason Catty had such a deep punk tradition and i don’t really know why…. To this day i still wonder about Why That Was. Someone brainiac should figure it out and do an ethnography.
There were even dances at some church in Catty that I and other LV punkers would attend. First time I went my mind was fucking completely blown: little elementary & middle school kids (no lie) pogoing around with spiked hair, sid vicious chain necklaces with locks, and engineer boots. Tracy Pain’s gnarly older brother was DJing (999, pork dukes, sex pistols, uk subs, all Catty faves). The chaperones were all singing along to Friggin In The Riggin and dancing around.
I couldn’t believe it.
Me & a couple kids started skanking around 1982 style and bam! Tracy’s older brother put me on the floor with a sucker punch. He didn’t like this new kinda punk dancing.
Prior to Youthquake the Catty bands were pretty tough & raw and late 70s-ish. The LIARS, The CLAP, The COMPLAINTS (whom i totally loved), etc. They all kind of sang with english accents.
But with YQ came a more hardcore approach, as if intentionally they were reacting against the older punkers ( the Complaints had a song called Johnny Please Come Home, which i always hoped & imagined was about Johnny Loftus from The Clap) YQ wrote a darker themed song called Johnny’s Not Coming Home)
They broke up in 1986 I think?
But with roy’s brother on bass, or down-tuned guitar, they morphed into WORD MADE FLESH who were, to me, thee greatest LV band ever (not just up to that point). But for whatever reason they didn’t last too long either.
Larry went on to sing in Fathead, and continues to ‘live rough’ to this very day i hear. Roy went on to play with Nausea, Soulfly, Stone Sour, Amebix and probably others.
When i think of all these old friends and the things they did I cant help but feel good, and sad; about having once been a 16 year old punker, and about how much time has gone by.
– Eric de Jesus (raw pogo on the scaffold zine/ easy subcult)
– photos by Jen Buck Knies & Jen Chapelle
Stress Test Demo 1986
01 – We Dont Need
02 – Johnnys Not Coming Home Today
03 – The Tables Turned
04 – American Escalation
05 – Stress Test
06 – Ill Take My Chances
07 – Right to Die
08 – It Wasnt Your Choice
09 – Prepare Them for War
10 – It Cant Happen
11 – Youre the Robot