Teen Idles - Anniversary [EP] (Cover Artwork)
Staff Pick

Teen Idles

Anniversary [EP] (1996)

Dischord Records

Before we had Fugazi and before we had Minor Threat there was the very short-lived Teen Idles. The band was thought to have released only one 7-inch called Minor Disturbance, but in 1996 for its one-hundredth released, Dischord Records put out the Anniversary 7-inch that would include five demo songs, which were recorded in 1980.

While a majority of these songs would later go on to being apart of the Minor Disturbance 7-inch, there were a couple that wouldn’t be heard by the public for another sixteen years. The first track “Adventure” was no something you would expect from an early hardcore band. The song was a blues-based, surf instrumental tune which seemed like something you would hear from a 50’s rock band, but updated and with more of an edge.

Another track that was not on Minor Disturbance was “Trans Am.” The song was a clear indication that hardcore was on its way to becoming a whole different breed from first wave punk rock. In classic punk form, the lyrics took aim at the jock-type driving muscle cars. Ian Mackaye’s swift and sharp guitar playing was the back bone of “Trans Am.” Nathan Strejcek’s vocal style on this song and through out this EP wasn’t quite melodic singing, nor was it yelling. It touches upon both, which influenced how vocals in the hardcore sub-genre would be done decades later.

What made Anniversary (and Teen Idles in general for that matter) such an interesting release is that it came out in a time when the first wave of punk rock was just ending and the second wave/hardcore scenes were just beginning. It’s an intersecting artifact that captures elements of both, which is something you don’t hear very often. When you listen to this record it is clear, looking back where punk rock was heading.