Monday, October 18, 2010

The Last Crime

If I had to document my top 5 Long Island band releases, this one would come in at #2 behind the previously discussed Automanipulation.  While The Last Crime may not have been as widely recognized as other LI bands, they definitely have created a cult following that still has the band talked about quite reverentially despite their protracted lifespan and fairly minimal recorded output.

The Last Crime were made up of Kevin Egan on guitar and vocals (formerly of 1.6 Band and Beyond and later of $24,000), Steven DePalo also on guitar and vocals (who was in The Farckus Affair, as well as Science Diet), Rich Muller on drums and Eric Svirida on bass who also served time in Farckus Affair and briefly in Science Diet).  I don’t know when Svirida left the band, but Mike Delorenzo of The Fifty-Two X and Dynasty filled in on bass as well as Chris Donohue of Science Diet and later of Antarctica and Ova Looven for many of their later shows (Credit to Chris Donohue for pointing out the correction).  They are a band that I don’t have a terrible amount of information on, despite my love of their music.  They formed at some point in 1994 and I’m pretty sure they dissolved in 1997.

The first time I heard about them was in 1996.  I was trying to book a show with this guy Mark who was in the band Pacifier and he had the matinees at Dr. Shay’s on lockdown at the time.  I told him that my band at the time, Six of One was a “noise-rock band”, as there was no defining term like “indie” is now.  We had to make up these terms like “noise-rock” or “melodic dischord” without saying that we really liked Fugazi, but aren’t a hardcore band.  It was an odd time since there were hardcore bands and punk bands… but not many bands were playing what we would now term indie stuff.  Anyway, Mark said he loved noise and that we should play with The Last Crime as there was no band noisier.

While we never had the opportunity to share a bill with them, the guy was right.  They were a bit of an anomaly in the scene.  They played with a lot of the hardcore bands, but their music was decidedly not close to that vein.  They had a sound akin to early Unwound, Drive Like Jehu, Shellac and June of ’44.  There were screaming vocals and heaps of dissonant driving guitars.  I always felt that their song title “An Explosion in New Mexico” summed up what I felt the band sounded like – an explosion after an explosion.

I got to see the band a bunch of times at Deja 1,Dr. Shay’s and I do remember them playing an oddball show at The Rock Lobster in Glen Head where I remember the guys in Dynasty came up, appropriated their instruments and played a few songs.

As I mentioned, Egan went on to $24,000 and eventually reunited the 1.6 Band.  Steven DePalo joined Chris Donohue in Dawn in Bathos and later Ova Looven and mostly does sound engineering now.  Eric Svirda played guitar in Dawn in Bathos and I believe he moved to Seattle and wound up playing with some jazz bands.  Rich Muller plays guitar and sings in Vice Massacre with Jerry Carbone who was in Science Diet/Dawn in Bathos/Farckus Affair (Credit to Jerry for the information.)

The album was released on the short-lived OMEGA label.  There are also two additional songs (Credit to Mike Andriani for sending these to me) that the band recorded with J. Robbins of Jawbox that were planned for a second EP that never materialized and thusly never released.

Here’s the myspace page of the band, I’m not sure who the proprietor is:

THE LAST CRIME – s/t EP + 2 Unreleased Songs


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  2. Muller played drums in The Last Crime. Chris took over for Eric on bass. Muller now sings and plays guitar in Vise Massacre with Jerry from Dawn in Bathos/Science Diet/Farkcus Affair on drums

  3. We played our first show Halloween weekend 1995. The hidden track on the self titled CD is the same track from the Welcome to NY comp that was never released.

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  5. Too many thankx!! I like this band, and your comment about Jawbox... Now I understand why I love these songs... I like Jawbox too...

    And these six songs are brutally amazing...

    I'll spread this band to my friends. Definitly...

    Alex (Spain)