Resist (L’Intransigente #1)

During the spring of 1992 ‘Resist’ (from Portland, Oregon) toured Europe (organised by Ueli Schill of Romp Productions in Luzern, Switzerland); that also brought them to the Vort’n Vis (92-06-13). They were a political HC/ anarchopunk band with Kelly Halliburton (bass), Tony Mengis (vocals), Ty Smith (drums; R.I.P.) and Ward Young (guitar).

L’Intransigente (The Uncompromising) was a “Hardcore Anarchia Punk ‘Zine” edited by an anarchist Italian correspondent of mine: Paolo Matteucci (from Cuneo). Since it was written in his mothertongue I could only partially grasp the content. #1 contained (besides this here) also interviews with ‘Hiatus’ and ‘Fleas & Lice’; writings about multinationals, vegetarianism, emancipation. #2 featured ‘One By One’, the anarchist collective ‘Fobia’ from Spain, etc. Paolo also did Kerosene Distribuzioni, disseminating various pamphlets and booklets (e.g. by Enrico Malatesta).

Paolo Matteucci (Kerosene - Intransigente)

[Translation below; thanks to Paolo Melis]

Resist (Intransigente #1) aResist (Intransigente #1) bResist (Intransigente #1) c* A bit of history…

We’re from Portland, USA. We started in March 1989, the First gig followed in July. In 1990 we realeased an EP and in 1991 the LP The Solution…Revolution.

We are: Kelly – bass, Tony – vocals, Ward – guitar, Ty – drums.

WHAT ARE YOUR LYRICS ABOUT?

They deal with political and social issues that are important to us; such as state-repression, women’s rights, sexual freedom, war, exploitation in the workplace, etc.

At present there are a lot of things that are fucked up in this world. People should understand that something must be done to achieve a change.

HOW IS THE PORTLAND SCENE?

W – On the one side beautiful, on the other very bad. In Portland, where actually we’re not that popular, there’s a decent all-ages club (in the US minors (-21) are not allowed to drink alcohol. No alcohol is served in an all-ages clubs.).

K – I think the movement in Portland sucks. The majority that goes to gigs are fashion-punks and snobs.

HOW ARE CONCERTS IN THE U.S.?

W – Not super-good as when we play in Portland, but there are very nice scenes, for example in Seattle, Berkeley. In Europe it’s much better.

THERE ARE MANY STRAIGHT-EDGERS IN THE U.S. WHAT’S YOUR OPINION ON THIS?

T – I have got nothing to do with them. If someone wants to drink or do dope, then that’s their business. It’s almost unbelievable that there is a Straight Edge movement!

K – There’s no straight-edge scene in Portland but in other places there is and there it’s important. I think the people should first take a serious look at themselves before they adopt a lifestyle that is based on an idiotic fashion. If I feel like drinking or smoking, then I do so; if I don’t feel like it, I don’t do it. No straight-edger should tell me what to do with my body.

WHAT DO YOU LIVE OF?

W – I work in a shop selling car-parts. I send car-parts to workshops and warehouses. Kelly studies and Ty works for a veterinarian.

T – At the moment I work in a rehabilitation-centre for young people two days a week.

YOUR OPINION ON VEGETARIANISM / VEGANISM?

W – It’s a fantastic thing.

WHAT ARE YOUR REASONS NOT TO EAT MEAT?

K – Vegetarianism or veganism is the simplest way to do something about the suffering and oppression. The meat-industry is so incredibly barbaric that I wonder how it’s possible that a person is not a vegetarian. The thought of having a corpse in my mouth would make go crazy.

W – For various reasons, but I think we all agree on the fact that one havs no right to kill animals to have a good meal. It’s a sign that you don’t like animals, that you don’t respect them and their rights.

T – If I don’t eat meat, it’s not just because an animal is slaiughtered but also because meat is bad for your health. Moreover: the ratio between the nutritional value of cereals compared to animal protein is 16/1. 80% of the corn-crop in the U.S. is used to feed cattle. Even though there are millions of people who die of starvation.

WHAT IS THE SITUATION IN AMERIKKKA REGARDING RACISM AND RIGHTWING POLITICS?

K – For the moment it’s really not good. The black population is intimidated by racist organizations such as White Aryan Power, The Order, Aryan Nation and by larger organisations such as the U.S. government itself. The right continues to deny human rights with its campaigns against abortion, homosexuality, …

HOW DO PEOPLE ORGANISE AGAINST RACISM?

T – There are large organisations such as the Coalition For Human Dignity, the Anti-Defamation League, … that write petitions, form lobbies, organise meetings and discussions, blah blah blah … But there are also people who take underground action and actually do something, who hit back.

WHAT DO YOU THINK ABOUT THE REVOLT IN L.A.? WERE YOU GUYS THERE? HAS SOMETHING HAPPENED IN PORTLAND? OR IN OTHER MAJOR CITIES IN THE U.S.?

K – None of us was there but I think that the revolt was better organised and more precise than the media would have us believe … In Portland, Seattle and other places there have been smaller actions. Let’s hope it’s a sign that the black population begins to strike back and resists the shit of the ruling white class.

T – I wasn’t in L.A. so I won’t comment on that. In Portland the crowd has broken up the streets and smashed shop-windows, vandalized luxury cars and spattered the business-centre completely with paint. In Seattle, they ‘invaded’ private property of the wealthy parasites.

IS THERE A SQUAT-MOVEMENT IN THE U.S.?

K – There are squats in big cities like L.A., N.Y., San Francisco, but not in the smaller towns. Not like in Europe. I hope the American scene takes over the example of the European scene and starts working together to organise the homeless.

T – In Portland there are few individuals who squat but they’re individual initiatives. There is a squat-movement in N.Y. and in other major cities.

SOMETHING TO END WITH?

K – Let’s keep our heads straight and fight the lies of the system. Soy Not Oi and … Resist!

This interview with ‘Resist’ was conducted by Annette of the Swiss fanzine Panik Bourgeois.

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