Chris Colohan, Chapter One.

To give a bit of back story on the following, I had seen Chris around for a while now and despite never getting to see THE SWARM, I had the opportunity of seeing CURSED a number of times over the 7 years that they were a band. I was also witness to 2004’s LEFT FOR DEAD reunion.  Due to some recent circumstances, he and I started crossing paths in increased frequency a couple months ago and we got to talking. Initially, I had asked him about doing an interview for the website. However, after thinking about it, I realized there were two problems attached to doing so. One, the interview would have to be done in parts. Chris has been involved in the Southern Ontario punk music community for years and there’s no way we could cover that much ground in one sitting. And two, Chris has been a party to things that I’ve never even heard about. I decided the best way to go about this was to send Chris some really generic questions and give him the freedom to cover whatever he wanted. If you’ve listened to any of his numerous bands, you know the man is a wordsmith.

So without further ado, here’s chapter one (in what will be a somewhat recurring column).


A long time ago (1989-91) in a galaxy far, far away (Hamilton Mountain – Fennel & Upper Sherman to be exact). I had to move high schools because the situation was fucked up and really violent at mine. In a Catholic high school on Hamilton Mountain, you had to “be” something or be part of a pack or you were fucked. I didn’t know what I was, or why there was a need to “be” anything. I somehow always gravitated towards the antisocial and troublemakers. I got drunk a lot with the few good friends I did have. A lot. Like, kicked out of History class in first period drunk.

I learned drums and fucked around with some friends, including one super destructo punk guy named Tim Scime who would write songs about Nancy Reagan’s one tit (“Nancy’s On Welfare”), and getting beat up by Preps (“Blood From My Head”). Now THERE’S a practice tape I wish I still had.

I had no older brothers or friends that were into punk or hardcore. I really just had to find out what I liked myself, by trying it. There were a few really good record stores in Hamilton, it was the tail end of records being in regular print as a standard format. One of them was called ZAP. I literally picked up the first bunch of things I saw that looked and sounded good to me, which were:

The Exploited (Live at the White House)
Crass (Penis Envy)
Black Flag (My War)
The Crucifucks (Wisconsin)
Minor Threat (Out of Step)
Dead Kennedys (Fresh Fruit)
& the 4Skins (A few 4Skins More).

If I could see now all the records that I DIDN’T buy, sitting on that wall for $5, I’d probably piss myself. They probably had 8 Nunfuckers 7″es and 15 copies of Tied Down in a box on the floor.

I had moved schools a lot and didn’t really know many people, but I was definitely on the bad side of the jocks, who had decided I was a punk, and the Skinheads (as in the bad kind), who had decided I was a punching bag. Jocks and white power Ginos would toss a quarter to decide which ones would chase my ass home through a field that day. It was the year they put a police station in my school because of a hallway assault with a meat cleaver. Brebeuf Represent! I changed to a public school (Hillpark). I hung out with the Freaks. And by that I mean, that was the actual name for the demographic. Punks and goths (10 years before Hot Topic, when kids loved Bauhaus, wore CAPES and got beat up), skateboarders (which in Hamilton in 1991 could actually get you beat up), stoners and random outsiders. It was a mixed bag.

One of my friends dated a guy named Zac, who is to this day one of my best friends. Zac was a vegan, straightedge hardcore kid and I was a punk that did pretty much all the shit those kids hated, but I was working towards getting away from it, I had alcoholism in my family and I was definitely looking for some such extreme to find its way to me. A lot of those guys were snobs about their scene, which was a real turnoff. Zac was like a brother to me from the start, we skated together and he was a solid guy, he would be my first roommate when I left home. His family situation was messed up and he more or less had to raise his two brothers himself, so he was probably my first GOOD impression of a SXE guy that had real life reasons for it. To this day, he’s one of my best friends, we live 5 minutes away from each other, and he’s still SXE. And then there was Christian, who was just always over the top – getting in shit, getting expelled, getting in fights, making white power dudes sit in icy puddles and eat their shoelaces, laying out grown men who were smacking their wives downtown – being a Robin Hood shit disturber. And Jon Kruithof, who’s still around and active, who was the first person to show me a lot of far left, political punk records. One Blood tapes and some other Toronto stuff from the time. We would jam punk songs (or Bela Lugosi’s Dead) in his basement. And I’d met Chris Logan, who lent me a pile of MRRs and 7″es, from Shelter to Citizen’s Arrest. And Curtis, Phil Fader, Jeff. The unifying thing that ran across all those scenes was skateboarding.

The first “show” I ever saw was actually kind of a Battle Of the Bands with a bunch of local high school bands. There was a bar on Upper James on the West Mountain in Hamilton called Willy Woggs. It was the Misunderstood, this kind of Mod band, and a really early Chokehold. It seems now like some epic battle because I was so young, but it was probably 20 guys, max, just tearing each other apart. It was crossover-era mosh. Violent. No ninja moves that you could possibly practice in your room, just lashing out in all directions. Like jumping into a wood chipper. I got thrown over a table and into a wall. I got my own blood all over my Clockwork Orange shirt. I decided I wanted to sing about 2 seconds after that.


5 Responses to “Chris Colohan, Chapter One.”

  1. 1 xroldx November 28, 2008 at 4:13 am

    Wow I’m looking forward to further chapters!

  2. 2 Ryan November 28, 2008 at 8:10 am

    That ended so abruptly. I’m really interested in reading the rest of this.

  3. 3 Liam Callaghan May 6, 2010 at 1:09 pm

    I stumbled across this just today. Though two years over-due, I would love to hear the next chapter.

  4. 4 CHRISTINA December 7, 2010 at 12:07 pm


  5. 5 lucius March 7, 2011 at 11:49 pm

    was there ever a second part?

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