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Judge

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New York City (1987 – present)

Judge was a New York City band, formed in 1987 by Youth of Today guitarist John ‘Porcell’ Porcelly and former Death Before Dishonor/Youth of Today drummer Mike ‘Judge’ Ferraro. Their first release was a 7” EP on Porcelly’s label Schism (which he ran along with Side By Side/Gorilla Biscuits guitar-player Alex Brown) entitled New York Crew. The record featured 5 songs, one of which was a cover of “Warriors” by the British oi!/punk band Blitz. On this recording, the band was merely a two-piece, featuring Porcelly on bass and guitar, and Ferraro on vocals and drums. But with the addition of bass-player Jimmy Yu (of Mike’s former band Death Before Dishonor, which eventually evolved into Supertouch) and drummer ‘Lukey’ Luke Abbey (Warzone/Gorilla Biscuits), they got together a fully-functional live line-up.

The band received lots of criticism due to their militant straight edge lyrics, especially from fanzines like San Francisco’s Maximum Rock’N’Roll. The militant lyrics were a conscious move on the band’s part, as they were sick of seeing bands like Youth of Today, who in reality had a very positive message, get slagged for being too militant. So they decided to give the nay-sayers exactly what they wanted - the most militant straight edge band imaginable. And with lyrics like “those drugs are gonna kill you, if i don’t get you first”, they certainly proved provocavtive to those negative to the straight edge movement. Mike Judge has later on admitted that provocation was an important aim for the band.

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