Mark Bernstein- Bernie to us – was a New Yorker who came to Philly to go to Penn and gravitated to the West Philly punk scene. He moved into the Stickmen house on Buckingham St., which, of course, was known as Buckingham Palace.
We started hanging out in 1981 and played music together, Bernie on drums and the two of us on guitar. As an unnamed unit we played at the great basement parties at the Buckingham Palace and at a few other West Philly houses. For one show at the Radio Church of God we transported all of our equipment in shopping carts.
Early punk rock was so seat of the pants. The three of us had such a good time in those days. Having plenty of free time (aka no jobs) we’d watch soap operas and Dr. Who, go for long, meandering walks in Fairmount Park, and go watch bands wherever they might play.
After leaving Penn, Bernie went back to New York. After the first official version of More Fiends broke-up Bernie returned and we started playing again. At a party in some spooky apartment in Germantown we jammed with his friend, Matt Forstater, on sax. The four of us became the new More Fiends. With a crazy new sound we did great shows at Abe’s Steaks, the Community Education Center (CEC), more basements, Penn frats. At a show in Atlantic City some bozo locked the car keys in the trunk and we were stuck there for hours. We drove to Athens, Ohio for one show! Bernie would stay with us in our apartment. Which was great (despite those stinky Converse sneakers).
With that classic crew cut and the stripped t- shirts, and the bright smile Bernie was a great band mate. We miss him. –Allen Fiend
NYC’s False Prophets live from the Kennel Club in 86. For New York bands in the late 8O’s I personally was a bigger fan of the weirdo, more experimental bands like the Prophets, A.P.P.L.E. and my favorite Alice Donut.
This show was after their 2nd album Implosion was out but it seems like a good mix off that album and their self titled 1st LP.
For a few years I was working on this Philly Punk gigography covering the years 1977-1987. I cut off at 1987 because the music diversified so much after that that I thought it would be too much plus, I moved in one direction while others moved in another direction even though all the music could be considered Punk in some form at least. I haven’t been able to finish it because of Covid and the library being closed for a while and also, I wasn’t able to pay for newspapers.com the last several years. Most of what I have listed is from old flyer, fanzines, websites and newspapers. I only did newspaper research for Hot Club and other venues up to summer 1978. So, there is two years of research needed between summer 1978 and 1980. And, then for Omni’s and Ripley’s in the early 1980s. I also added the pre-Punk stuff from Stooges, MC5, New York Dolls, Velvet Underground/Lou Reed, Patti Smith and a few choice others like Hawkwind with Lemmy and Roxy Music that I thought were good influences for Punk.
Pisa’s Cheetah Chrome Motherfuckers live from the Kennel Club in 86. CHEETAH CHROME MOTHERFUCKERS are quite different than any of the European bands that have already made it to America. They don’t let their music fall into any easy categories. CCM’s discography of records and tapes is extensive in volume and variety. These guys express things musically the way they feel them without regard for the usual conventions-even those of hardcore. Sometimes’ the music borders on symphonic thrash, other times it slows down to the tortured screaming of a fly caught in a spider’s web. – maximum rock and roll #39
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