A mysterious and controversial band, they befouled the punk scene with their 1982 Solution LP, then disappeared off the face of the earth. Vile started in Maynard, a town in Massachusetts. The aim of the band was presumably to piss off as many people as possible, and their dubious tactic was bigotry. In possibly their only Boston appearance, opening up for the Angelic Upstarts in 1982, the singer told racist jokes from the stage and threw the mike stand at a member of the audience. Their infamous LP was recorded in the legendary Radiobeat Studio, and featured lyrics attacking women, minorities, gays, and pretty much everybody in general.
It has since become a coveted collector’s item. Album review reprinted from the web site Kill From The Heart: In the history of US hardcore (let alone worldwide…) Vile is mere triviality - a footnote to the sidebar. After two shows, one LP, and a bit of controversy they faded from all but the best memories. Curiously, in recent years they’ve obtained a cult following, likely due in part to members resurfacing via eBay with copies of the impossibly difficult to find LP. The story of the band is at least amusing, so I’ll tell what I know. “We’re from the suburbs not from the city We don’t hate you we just don’t know you” -Suburban Blight “Banned in Boston not LA Cause we had too much to say” -Banned In Boston Vile were outsiders to an insular scene: suburban kids who decided to gain attention the easy way, by pissing people off.
Their lyrics were offensive and their performances inflammatory. Their most legendary gig featured them opening for the Angelic Upstarts and Jerry’s Kids at the Channel, in which they insulted the audience, made racist remarks, and allegedly threw a mic stand into the crowd. Following the gig there was a lot of local controversy in zines and local publications about their set. A letter to the editor in Boston Rock urged locals to not book Vile on the basis of their “racism, sexism, and gay baiting”.
Bill Bile, the singer of Vile, responded, “…while we’re not too sure about the racist and sexist bit, we will admit that we put out a lot of homophobic garbage. But you have to admit that practicing homosexuality is still illegal in this state, so at least the law is on our side.” They also placed a half page ad in the magazine that said, simply, “Vile says fuck off!” One of the reasons for the LP’s ultra-rarity is that at this show they put copies of the record on windshields of the cars outside the venue. Following the gig most people returning to their cars to find the record were already enraged at the band, so most copies were immediately destroyed. There are many stories of kids playing Frisbee with their Vile LPs.
The only other show I know of them playing was with the Gronoids to an audience of 20 people. Another legend has the band throwing copies of their own record off a bridge. Of the 300 copies pressed, few survived. On stage or on record, the band’s purpose was clear; they cared primarily about offending people. The back cover to the record is white and has no information other than the lyrics to all songs and the recording information.
The music is simply played and based around the vocals. No one who heard Vile was going to escape their “message”. “Definitions” opens the record with a slow bass line, soon joined by the guitar and drums. The vocals snarl, “Rancid, offensive, vile of small worth or account / wicked, physically repulsive disgusting, contemptible.” Vile has made their declaration, delivered the definition of the album, and the music speeds up. The guitar is loud and fuzzed out, the drumming is simple, and the vocals are snotty, angry, and loud.
The production on the album is fantastic and helps makes the record memorable. It was recorded at Radio Beat with Jimmy Dufour. The legend is that Jimmy was unaware of the band’s lyrics and was upset when he found out what they were. This still leaves me wondering why he finished recording the twenty song LP (he must have figured out what was going on before the final mix was complete). Recorded before Vile had actually played any shows, “I’m a Punk” anticipates (or, perhaps, encourages) the listener’s reaction to the record, “I like to bitch and moan when I call Vile on the telephone.” The album manages to attack every conceivable stratum of society, and is so calculated that I’m surprised it wasn’t just dismissed as a bad joke.
The lyrics range from completely absurd to completely dodgy: “Old folks and cripples really bug us Nuns and priests profess to love us” -We Hate “I perjured, I lied, my friends got tried they both got acquitted but the cabbie died” -Acquitted “I used to have it good but now there are Hatians in the neghborhood I’d rather see some Cubans dead Than have them spending my bread” -Solution My favorite Vile lyrics aren’t written for reaction, though. “Hypocrisy” is a universal teen punk song, venting anger towards parents: “What the fuck is wrong with you Don’t you tell me what to do When your lies are all fucked up When will you shut up” Solution is an angry album, and it’s that anger that makes it worth repeated listens. Other contemporaries were trying to impress and belong, but Vile is completely snotty and in your face. Their anger is directed at the scene that doesn’t want a part of them and at authority figures that demean them.
Their employing offensive lyrics is secondary to the fury that is present. Vile are playing simple, raw, energetic, and pissed off hardcore songs made by alienated kids. That’s the feeling I’m left with when I hear the record. I’m not shocked by their tactics, I’m impressed with their rage. -DAVE HYDE 2) Vile is a brutal death metal band from California, USA.
They formed in 1996 and since then, they have released two demos and three full length albums. The band is still together (not all the original members) and currently signed to Listensable Records/Unique Leader Records. 3) Vile was a death metal band from Indonesia. They now go by the name Absolute Defiance. Read more on Last.fm. User-contributed text is available under the Creative Commons By-SA License; additional terms may apply..
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