Nardfest II – ILL REPUTE – In Control – Stalag 13 – False Confession – Aggression – Burning Dog – Circle One – The Last Priority – and Boxheads – at The Fox Theatre – Ventura, CA

August 16, 2014

Promoter/musician Jeff Hershey can really put on a show. NARDFEST 2014, at the Ventura Theater was a good one! Oxnard has always had its own scene and its own bands. Some of the coolest people come from the Oxnard/Ventura area.

It was always a blast hanging out with them in the early days when things were new and exciting. I have many fond memories of my friends in Oxnard. One of these important persons in the scene is Big Bob Porter. Bob is the original bass player for the Legendary band Aggression. He is one of the main figures in the original Nardcore scene and today was a special day for Big Bob. Bob wanted to share his wedding ceremony to all of his Nardcore friends and family so we started this days event with the wedding of Big Bob and Cece. John Phaneuf from Ill Repute did the honors and did a great job. It was very touching, everyone seemed really happy to see Bob full of life and happiness. This guy really deserves it as he has had a bit of some hard times, however he has managed to rise above it all.



















Now we come to the music. First band up were the Boxheads: a tribute to RKL. RKL is another legendary Nardcore band. Out of the Santa Barbara/Ventura area, these youngsters put out some of the best original Punk music in the 80's. The Boxheads played some of the classic's and did a really good job. I'm glad newer bands as well as older bands are recognizing that RKL were a very important part of the scene and need to be remembered. These guys were great musicians as well as really good people.

The Last Priority were up next. These guys are somewhat newer of the bunch (formed in the late 90's I believe). Every time I see them they get better and better. One of my favorite newer bands from Oxnard (even though some members live in the L.A. area now). They have a great old school sound with good musicianship.

Up next was a band not from Oxnard or Ventura county but had played with all of the original Nardcore bands back in the day: Circle One. You could say that Circle One is the only adoptive band to be in the Nardcore scene. Ill Repute's first show was with Circle One at the Port Hueneme Community Center along with Beer Guts. Circle One also did small tours with Aggression in the early 80's. Also, another unknown fact: Kyle from Dr. Know and Mark Aber from Agression played in Circle One for one or two shows in the 80's. Lots of Nardcore roots with this band. This line up was with Danny Dorman on bass who is on the Patterns Of Force LP and  founder of the band Mike Vallejo on guitar. Also in the band was Jeremy on vocals and Sean (Gears drummer) on drums. They played a tight set with a lot of old classic's.

Burning Dog was up next and was a more heavy "Helmet" type band. Loud guitars and a heavy beat is what you can expect from these guys. Not really old school, but a nice addition to this line up of bands.



















The mighty Aggression were up next. The band is currently fronted by Jess Leedy on vocals, he does justice to the late original singer Mark Hickey. On guitar was Rob Thacker. If you close your eyes and hear Rob play you'd swear it was Henry Knowles playing. Both these guys are keeping Aggression's music alive. Danny Dorman also plays bass along with Mark Aber on drums. Mark is also an early drummer for the band and played many of the early 80's shows with them.  It wouldn't be Aggression without the presence of Big Bob, he came on stage and played a few songs with Aggression. They played all of their well known tunes and did a really good job. Mark Hickey's little brother also came up on stage and did a song or two. A very nice touch. Aggression is synonyms with Nardcore and their wouldn't be any Dr. Know, Ill Repute, Stalag 13, False Confession, etc without them.

A very influential band to this day, False Confession, was up next. At first I thought it was Black Sabbath playing but then looked up on stage and saw Isreal, Fred, Ismael, and Harry. One of my favorite Nardcore bands. Their not your typical hardcore band. They add a little Goth/No Wave/Post Punk/and I dare say "Prog". Isreal  is one of the best dressed front men in the scene!! Got a great voice,too. Fred is one of the most underrated guitarist around, Ismael keeps looking up for that UFO that hasn't picked him up yet (just kidding...) but keeps it all together with that bottom end, and Harry is another underrated musician. Together, they play great classic Punk like no one else can. Very cool people,too.

Stalag 13 came on next with the In Control line up minus Ron. Very intense, powerful and exciting Hardcore from yet another legendary Nardcore band. They still have all the energy from the old days and put on one hell of a show. "Conditioned" and "No Excuse" are among my favorites, along with "In Control". Check them out if you have the chance.

In Control was up next and played a good set of Hardcore. They were another of the newer bands that fit in really well. Did they get their name from the Stalag 13 song? Cool name and a good band. Got all the young kids going.

Finally....the Oxnard legends ILL REPUTE. This was their 30th year anniversary of the "What Happens Next" LP. What can I say about these guys that hasn't been said already. So important in the Oxnard scene/came out with lots of diverse LPs/great musicians/great bunch of guys. Ill Repute is much more than just a band out of Oxnard. If you know these guys you know what I mean. All of the band members are first class acts and first class people!! Very hard working back in the day when you had to really work hard to get your band out there. They discovered a lot of cool bands back in the day and helped out local and out of town bands. Just all around GREAT people. I'm proud to have them as my friends, and once shared the stage with Tony (Thanks Tony for putting up with my shananigans). As usual,they put on a great show. Played all the hits (still waiting to hear songs from the Big Rusty Balls LP!!!) and did it all with Ill Repute class! These guys rule!! Plain and simple.

Thanks again to Jeff Hershey for putting on such a great event. If you weren't there...boy, you missed out!



 More photos of the show can be seen HERE

-Pix Tracy-
Big Wheel Staff Reporter




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