Feature Story                                                                                                 Tuesday, August 26, 2013


Purely Punk

Legendary band D.O.A. rocks Chilliwack

Staff/Voice photos


Joey Keithley sings with D.O.A. at District Pub on Saturday. Below, Chad Blackey performs with his band Clarence.


n Saturday, the Godfather of Punk, Joe Keithly and his band D.O.A., considered by many to be music royalty, paid a visit to Chilliwack in a sold out show at the District Public House.


Rewind to the mid-80s, back to when Vancouver’s punk subculture scene was at its apex. It was an era of rebellion, anti-authoritarianism and anarchy.


Every city had its punk bands. In Vancouver, The Pointed Sticks and Braineater were everywhere. So too were D.O.A.


Then there was the concert at the UBC pub, where D.O.A. and The Pointed Sticks backed up Jello Biafra and the Dead Kennedy's.


An obnoxious, jackbooted crowd, with spiked Mohawks and so many safety pins they looked like fishing tackle boxes, were slamming into each other in a “Moshe Pit” even before the music started.


In the punk scene it was considered a compliment for a band to be spit on while playing. That night, one by one, the bands walked off the stage before their sets ended covered from head to toe in saliva.


Some say punk rock died around 1996, so when D.O.A. played the District Pub on Saturday, the only Canadian stop on a 50 date tour, they proved it’s still very much alive and kicking. For those who remember the era, it was like stepping back in time to that night at the UBC pub — sans the spit.


Lead singer and guitarist Keithley, a.k.a Joey Shithead, showed he’s still got an edge. Several young men bounced into each other in front of the stage.


A whole new generation is once again learning the punk ropes.


In the May, Keithley ran as an NDP candidate in the Coquitlam riding during the BC elections. Now, after three decades and 14 albums, he’s taking his band on what’s been coined “The Farewell Tour”.


Backing up DOA was local Chilliwack band Clarence. Those familiar with the local music scene will remember some of the band members from Mystery Machine.


The band consists of singer/guitarist Cary "Cozy Pines" Britton, bass guitarist Brock Riley, singer/guitarist Chad Blackey and drummer Jake Beatsberg.


Blackey took a moment to speak with the Voice prior to their set.


“We've been together for about a year. We've had drummer issues," he said. It seems to be the hardest piece to fit, but we've finally got a drummer that's committed and solid.”


They find their influence for their original tunes from bands like The Pixies.


Blackey says the band has only played a couple of gigs together, but all the members have experience playing.


“We make a lot of noise, use a lot of pedals, just try and do some shit with a little bit of difference, than four chord rock, but this is kind of our first big gig with the band.”


“Right now it's just going really well, being that its two writers predominantly bringing different styles to the band with Carey and myself and then having a tight rhythm section is really locking it in,” explained Blackey.


Blackey says they’re looking forward to an album soon.


“We're trying to put money together to do that, and then just try to dig up old connections in the industry and ask for favours for recording that, but a CD is priority one.”


Watch a YouTube clip of DOA at District Pub here. *Please note that there is some strong language.



Upcoming Shows at District Public House


• Whoa She's a Babe and Rykka

September 7 at 9:00pm


• Alex Vissia

September 21 at 9:00pm


• Bif Naked After Party

September 27 at 10:30pm


• Pigeon Park

District Oct. 5th at 9:00pm


• Damn Fools

November 9 at 9:00pm



District Public House is located at Five Corners in Chilliwack – 45975 Wellington Ave. For more information, visit their website at www.thedistrictpublichouse.com


See more photos below.


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