Radical Records Revisited: Punk’s Not Dead!

It will no doubt come as little surprise that back in the day (late 70s through early 80s) I was a bit of a punk.

San Francisco had a pretty good scene back then – not, it seemed to us, as good as London or LA or New York (the Bay Area cultural inferiority complex), but not bad.  The Mabuhay Gardens (aka, the Fab Mab) in San Francisco’s North Beach was one of the main venues for live shows, along with the Savoy Tivoli, though I was living in the East Bay at the time, and tended to prefer venues I could walk home from – like the Dew Drop Inn on San Pablo and the excellent, outrageous Barrington Hall.

Of all the local bands playing then – including Flipper, The Dead Kennedys, Pop-O-Pies, etc., etc. – my favorite was The Avengers. They were really only together for about two years, so many people have only heard this awesome band through their Pink Album, a record released in 1983, long after the band split up, which contained high-quality recordings of all their best material.

Out of print and hard to find for many years, The Pink Album has now been re-released, following a number of reunion shows over the last five years by members of the original band, including lead singer and star presence Penelope Houston, who has had a successful solo career in the years since The Avengers.

At least one of those reunions, the show at CBGB’s in 2006, is available on YouTube, but you can also take a trip in the wayback machine and check them out at the source – in a show at The Fab May in 1978:

For more…


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