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Friday, Feb. 27, 2009

LISTENING POST

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F-cked Up


To promote the release of their sophomore album, last October's blistering "The Chemistry of Common Life," Toronto punks F-cked Up played a free gig in a New York boutique store. So what's the big deal you're wondering? The sextet's performance lasted a punishing 12 hours and saw them collaborating with electro wiz Moby, Dinosaur Jr.'s J Mascis and Ezra Koenig from alterna-pop buzz band Vampire Weekend.

News photo
F-cked Up

The unabated love for F-cked Up from famed peers continued earlier this month with punk icons Jello Biafra (Dead Kennedys) and Keith Morris (Black Flag, Circle Jerks) joining them for songs during shows in California. Musicians aren't the only folks going gaga for the act's abrasive, experimental mix of vintage hardcore, prog and shoegaze. "The Chemistry of Common Life" has been universally heralded by the media, rightfully drawing comparisons to innovative hardcore classics by Black Flag and Sweden's Refused.

Finding a nonoffensive way to reference F-cked Up has caused headaches for some mainstream media outlets. Canadian book retailer Chapters banned the November issue of local music magazine Chart for publishing the band's uncensored moniker on its cover. The New York Times avoided similar controversy by running reviews of F-cked Up concerts in 2007 and 2009 that made no reference to the band's name at all.

Ahead of their Japan live debut in Tokyo in March, vocalist Pink Eyes promises in a video message to Japanese fans on Creativeman's Web site that there will be "blood, sweat and semen" at the show, and adds that he'll "probably get naked." He's not joking. Dubbed "the craziest band in Canada" mainly due to his antics, the imposing, gruff-voiced frontman helped incite chaos during performances on MTV Canada in 2007 and 2008. The first saw the band and riled-up attendees causing 2,000 Canadian dollars in destruction as they tore apart the soundstage. The latter took place in a bathroom and resulted in CA$6,000-worth of damages. Chances are Tokyo's show will be one hell of a riot.

F-cked Up play March 10 at Astro Hall in Harajuku, Tokyo (7 p.m.; ¥4,500; [03] 3401-5352).

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