In 2016, on the 9th of September, my band STERILE MIND played a show with SUBHUMANS. Talk to teenage Oklahoma Punk Me and tell me that was gonna happen on my 44th birthday and I would laugh in your face. I mean....after I asked you who SUBHUMANS were, because I was (and, let's be honest, still am) clueless. The next morning, I got on an airplane and flew to Missouri and spent a few days with some crazy ass religious cult family that my father had somehow entrenched in while I watched the life leave his body. The year that followed has been rather intense, but full of life, full of learning, and full of adventure. My friend Katherine made this tape for me, not knowing the condition I would be in when it reached me, and not knowing the struggles that this reality would throw at me before I even had a chance to sit down and digest the contents. But it's a concept tape....and it's about getting old(er). And whether you are knee deep in the shit or not, it is a brilliant mix. This should come as no surprise, since Katherine is a brilliant woman. A woman full of life and knowledge and experience and wisdom beyond measure, and a woman I am very lucky to call a friend. I confess that it was months before I really spent any time with this tape (I was kinda going through some stuff), but as I listen to today to the deep SABBATH cut "Never Say Die!" placed expertly between THE PLUGZ and WIPERS, and I think about myself sitting in that hospital room on my father's birthday watching strangers wipe the piss and shit from his lifeless but still breathing pre-corpse, I'm like...."yeah, exactly." Because the rock keeps turning, whether you and/or yours are still on it or not.
I write this in late August, preparing to board a flight for South America (yeah...the posts you've been reading these past days were all prepared earlier, like a fukkn TV dinner - nothing personal, I just had somewhere time specific I needed to be). With any luck, and barring plane crashes and/or hijackings, I will spend my 45th birthday with my pals FLIPOUTAA from Tokyo at their tour final in São Paulo with ULSTER and DER and a host of brilliant bands. And with any luck, that night (this night) will usher in a brilliant year, filled with continued growth and renewed positivity. Also, I can never listen to "It's Good To Have Met You" without crying. It's simply not possible.