When I listen to aggrotech, dark elektro or synthpop I sometimes flashback on my days as a young punk in Boston. Like a lot of punks, I was an angry lad full of venom and punk and hardcore perfectly expressed the intensity of my feelings.
The problem was that I wasn’t full of rage 24 hours a day.
I had other emotions that punk simply couldn’t express. A gloomy, overcast day went perfect with The Smiths (and there are a lot of gloomy, overcast days in Boston. When I was up for a night of debauchery James Brown was my kick start for the evening. When I was falling in love Coltrane’s “Naima” would evoke the sublime and if I was heartbroken I could commiserate with Hank Williams “I’m So Lonesome I Could Cry.” And if I was in the mood for some dark, trashy fun I’d throw in some Front 242 or Sleep Chamber.
To admit this to any of the punks I hung out with inevitably led to being labeled a poseur, which is about the worst thing you can call a punk. …