Since our first issue, we praised the merits of the DIY greek scene, though rap, punk or metal aesthetics. If the majority of the scene’s actors doesn’t play that much outside of the country, some are working hard for it, multipliying networks and manage to tour further than borders…Even in others continents!
This is the case for Youth Crusher from Athens (fast hardcore / punk), architect of its own tourbooking from europe to USA.
Par Polka.B | Traductions : Nino Futur
Hi! Can you make a quick presentation of your band?
The band consists of : Markelllos-drums , Vassilis – Guitar , Mpakaliaros -bass, Patroklos -vocals. We play hardcore punk with Greek sarcastic /political lyrics. We release our records /cassettes totally diy through our own Youth Garden label.
You live in Athens, Greece. How can you describe the life of a young punk in this city?
Athens is an overpopulated place just like any other city with all the pros and cons that comes with it .It can be bleak, boring or inhospitable sometimes but at the same time it urges you to make things happen as a young punk.
We are above our forties so i suppose we re not that young anymore ha ha. We still have the same mindset : we love hardcore punk music, the whole diy ethic, playing gigs, having fun, and meeting new people.
What are the particularities of the DIY scene in Greece?
The DIY scene in Athens seems more political than the majority of most countries. Gigs mostly happen in squats / autonomous spaces. Having donation boxes in the entrance so anyone can participate and support the cause and benefit gigs for anarchist political prisoners, happen quite often depending on the situation.
What are the musical influences and the artists who motivated you to create the band?
The whole 90’s Greek DIY scene and bands like Nautia, Xaotiko Telos Adieksodo. Some hardcore punk from all over the world and a little bit of grind here and there.
It looks important for you to play abroad. How did you make all these contacts outside Greece?
We love touring especially outside of our safe zone. Usually we find the contacts through email or friends who have toured before and we try to arrange everything 6 -7 months prior. People seem to be friendly enough to send us mail / suggestions on venues places to play. Planning ahead is an important part of the process. It was the same for the U.S.A. We did a tour before in the east coast in 2018 so we had already some contacts and we met some new ones of course . Establishing a network of people and working along with that.
What are the particularities of a tour in the U.S.A in the do it yourself scene?
Gigs happens of all sorts. Punk houses / record shops /autonomous places / libraries / youth centers etc. Surprisingly enough people are super friendly, kind enough to offer us hospitality and places to crash. Punk is very vibrant in the USA.
What are the experiences on tour in United States that impressed you the most? Why?
The help and guidance of the local people was valuable enough to give us joy to continue.
What are your worst memories?
The rental van!
It had a lot of problems like the side door and engine. That stalled us for a day or two and we were traveling in -18 degrees in winter time.
And the best?
The whole experience was great. We played in places that we never throught before . Gigs in New Jersey with lots of friends, Minneapolis (Discgraceland), Milwaukee was great too. Some people offered their houses to crash for the night making the experience more pleasant.
What are your future projects?
We plan on writing our first LP hopefully in 2024. 10-15 new tracks.
There is also a suggestion for a split release.
Certainly some gigs in Greece in autumn and hopefully one tour in Europe…
To finish this interview, we’ll give you carte blanche to discuss a topic of your choice!
always be the driving power to do what we do. But unfortunately, life does not contain only the things we aspire and want to do.
Not only as musicians,but also as working human beings and as parts of the repressed Greek society, we would like to say a few words about life in Greece and the political status and situation that reigns in our country, for over a decade now.
We live under a co-dependen from others countries, which as far as I can remember,always succumbs to all the great imperialistic forces of the US and the EU. All of Greeces creeks and islands are occupied by NATO bases despite the deeply anti-imperialistic feelings of our people, despite of all the long and remaining thirst for breaking the shackles and to be independent from the syndicate of the wars of the West.
It would not be an overstatement if we said,that for decades now nobody of those who took in charge of this country did not deeply cared about the people who inhabit it, and those people’s future. Our buildings and our foundation, whatever we could call this country’s production outcome, all the wealth that’s been produced, it has been diminished,all the years under the Germany debt and being subdued to all the banks of the EU and to the IMF(International Monetary Fund) to completely sell itself to the big international forces,under the threat of bankruptcy.
What comes out of this situation is a lack of members on the fire department as much as lack of equipment on basic stuff like having modern planes for the firefighters and not giving them old planes that remained stacked in old bases.
This year in Greece two young firefighters died,while they were putting out fires at Evia with a Canadair,that was over 50 years old.
Only the police department in Greece has all the equipment they need,with all the latest technology in their hands, to control, repress the poor and guard all the upper high executives.
The deeply based economical crisis of the semi-barbaric capilistic system, international, especially after the Russian-Ukraine war gives us as a result the continuation of the ‘poor getting poorer’ pattern in Greece as well as in the EU.
In Greece,the prices getting higher,the snatch of the people’s belongings,from the banks and international funds, electrical light power offs, drowned refugees, massive state assassinations, Like the one at Tempi, sale of the public owned stuff, burning the nature and its trees…
Is our what our people experiencing from the social-democratic (Syriza,Pasok), as well as from the neo-liberal and far right now reigning government of the Nea Dimokratia party.
Inside this social-political reality, fascism,always finds the conditions to ‘hatch its eggs’ and continue ‘being’, the out of the spot light fascists found themselves at the Greek Parliament and Kasidiaris,a neo-nazi murderer out of the ‘Golden Dawn’ party, who’s in prison,announced that will be taking part as a candidate for Athens at the next elections.
To the battles that are coming up next,we will be present,to built a high anti-fascist wall against cops and the fascists that they are out of the spotlight,with compass,our active anti-fascist tradition and the massive people self-defense as our weapon.