Band Spotlight #10: Social Unrest

This is not style. This is not fashion. This is not political upheaval. This is not a grim prospect to a terrible end.

This is merely a reply; a reaction by some individuals to keep in touch with the human element inside. An element that allows them to see beyond all fear and pain and allows them to come to terms with who and what they really are. An attempt to establish a well-being both mentally and emotionally before we are totally nullified and synthetically pacified by all the outside forces of this bureaucratic, scrutinizing nightmare called the new age. Statement – Before The Fall – 1986.

Hayward, California spawned Social Unrest on the borderline of 1979 and 1980. Their suburban origins were embraced and inspired something for the band to build on from the outset. The original line-up formed as Doug Logic (guitar), John Vollick (bass), Danny “Radio Shack” Norwood (guitar), Mark “Manslaughter” Monti (drums) and the wirey Cretin K-OS on vocals.

Danny Norwood and Mark Monti went into musical hiatus until 1994 when they decided to reform Social Unrest with Jason Honea back on vocal duties and Cretin K-OS returning to his bass, and shared vocals. The band wasted no time writing new material either, and entered Catbox Studios, owned and operated by Green Day’s Billie Joe Armstrong in the spring of 1995 with Kevin Army and Billie Joe, and came out with the New Lows album for New Red Archives. Their half-a-decade apart did nothing to diminish their focus, and the hybrid of Honea’s nasal twang, Cretin’s snarl and twang, along with Norwood’s signature style and Monti’s technical twists came to fruition.

Social Unrest’s recorded output captures the rare ability of ripening with age. Two decades on, give or take, the raw Rat In A Maze or the polished Before The Fall, all still breathe with an originality and freshness, that bands of greater legendary stature fail to achieve.

“New Lows” (New Red Archive Records 1996)
“Complete Studio Recordings Vol. 1 & 2”
(New Red Archive Records 1994)
“Now And Forever” (Libertine Records 1988)
“Live In Germany” (Lost And Found Records 1988)
“Before The Fall” (Libertine Records 1986)
“SU 2000” (Libertine Records 1985)
“Rat In A Maze” (Libertine Records 1982)
“Making Room For Youth”
(Infa Red Records 1981)

Band members:
Creetin K-oS (Vocals)
Danny Norwood (Guitar)
Ray Vegas (guitar)
Mark Hernandez (drums)
Pat Toves (bass)

Hometown: Hayward, CA


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