pics of Steve Shelley’s pre-Sonic Youth band The Crucifucks @ CT’s The Anthrax in 1984
The pandemic has given a lot of people a lot more time at home, and artists, like Sonic Youth, have used it to dig through their archives and share rarities on Bandcamp. On a similar note, longtime BrooklynVegan contributing photographer Greg Cristman has been digging through his archives of photos from the decades of shows he's shot, and came across this set of Michigan punks The Crucifucks playing Stamford, CT all-ages club The Anthrax on December 8, 1984. "I spent a couple days with the band and partying in their van,' says Greg, who notes that Crucifucks frontman Doc Dart "was a truly deranged dude but hilarious."
In addition to their intentionally offensive, confrontational name (which was way more offensive in 1984) and putting out records on Jello Biafra's Alternative Tentacles label, The Crucifucks were notable as the band Steve Shelley was in before moving to New York and joining Sonic Youth. Steve tells us that this East Coast tour was what got the ball rolling on that. "We also played CBGB's on this trip -- where Thurston Moore and Lee Ranaldo caught our set," says Steve. "Bassist Marc Hauser and I would leave the band a few months later, drive to NYC and dog-sit for Kim and Thurston at their LES apartment while they were on tour in Europe. They called asking if we could house-sit, dog-sit a bit longer as they'd been invited to open for Nick Cave on his upcoming tour -- of course we were happy to stay and we were both already looking for day jobs so we could stay in NYC once Kim and Thurston returned."
As for The Anthrax show, Steve tells us "The line-up for this tour was Doc Dart - vocals (and trombone!), Gus Varner - guitar, Marc Hauser - bass, and myself on drums," and that these photos offer a rare look at "Dart blowing on the trombone -- at later shows Doc would take a trombone solo during the song 'When The Top Comes Off'."
Also playing this show were The Dead Milkmen and Strange Flesh but unfortunately Greg did not have photos of their set, but he does note you can see The Dead Milkmen's setlist stuck to a support beam in a couple of the pics.
Check out the photos below.
photos by Greg Cristman