Guest Author - Danielle Crowe
OFF! is a hardcore punk band making a big splash on the punk music scene. Originally from Los Angeles, CA the four musicians formed OFF! in 2009 and haven’t looked back since. All four band members pride themselves on consistently challenging society’s ideals and have personally never strayed from their intentions.
The band members include Keith Morris (vocals) who was the founding member and vocalist for the infamous L.A. punk band Black Flag, Dimitri Coats (guitar) was originally a member of the alternative rock band Burning Brides and toured with bands like The White Stripes, Queens of the Stone Age and Mastodon, Steven Shane McDonald (bass) who co-founded the alternative rock band Redd Kross in 1978 and still continues to tour with them when OFF! is not booked or recording and Mario Rubalcaba (drums) whom is not only a talented musician but also a professional skateboarder for Tony Alva’s Team Alva.
OFF! made their live debut in 2010 at the South by Southwest Music Festival in Austin, Texas. Although the band had only a handful of songs and booked no other stage times they still made the bold move to get up and play which was considered defiant by general industry standards - but that was exactly how the band wanted it to be. They released their first vinyl EP on October 13, 2010 titled 1st EP and then continued to record three more. On December 14, 2010 they released a four EP vinyl box set titled First Four EPs which is available through Vice Music.
Based in the West Coast’s hardcore punk scene, OFF! is strategically using their voices and music to bring awareness to the provocative issues that they want pushed to the forefront. Their artistic goal for OFF! is not just to make great punk music but also to stay true to the rebellion and anti-establishment that punk music originally inspired. Their first hometown L.A. show was at The 6th St. Warehouse where they played for an audience of 1,200 punk fans. That particular show has since been labelled one of the most pivotal and historical shows of the hardcore scene in the past 20 years. The band members have been quoted saying that they reached into their past creativity in order to bring back the hardcore rawness to the present day punk scenes.
OFF!’s music can be described as a mixture of ravaged riffs, intensely fast punk rock, fiery sounds and guitarist Dimitri Coats has used the term “dark party” to describe the band’s songs.
Beneath the dark sarcasm and the band’s intention to make as much noise and irritation as possible lies the messages that times and economies get tough but instead of throwing up your arms and giving up you can shout out your message and shine a “dark light” on the dark times. OFF!’s music and band members do just that.