Go Skateboarding Day and Make Music New York both come around every year on June 21st and draw scores of enthusiastic participants. Go Skateboarding Day is an event to celebrate- you guessed it- skateboarding and skate culture, as well as to encourage more people to get involved with the sport. MMNY is a city wide festival of free pop up concerts performed outdoors in public parks, plazas, and in front of participating businesses. While not directly affiliated with each other, music and skateboarding definitely go hand in hand, and punk has always been closely linked to skating, so it was only natural for a punk show to happen in the late afternoon merging the festivities in a public plaza in Brooklyn. The bill featured intersectional feminist skate punk Witch Slap (aka the band I play drums in) progressive black metal Prostitution (who organized the event) and was headlined by hardcore punks Rebelmatic.
Under the blazing afternoon sun, Witch Slap kicked things off as skaters rolled up to settle in for the show. From my position behind the drum kit, I watched as the crowd grew as we played and got particularly into our ode to women/girl skateboarders “She Shredder Revolution” which we paired back to back with a cover of the Black Flag classic “Nervous Breakdown.” The heat was pretty wicked but it didn’t slow us down and it definitely didn’t stop people from dancing and skating while we played, hitting tricks to joyous cheers and applause. When our set was done, I caught my breath for a few minutes, chugged A LOT of water, then set to work grabbing shots of Prostitution and Rebelmatic who both put on blistering sets, not letting the scorching heat slow them down one bit either.
Prostitution powered through a set of thrash-gazey originals, complete with a few fun covers including the Van Halen classic “Panama,” and a heeeavy version of “Take On Me” by the 80s one hit wonders Aha. If they were tired from a long day of skating and working on getting the event set up, they didn’t let on, shredding through song after song without letting up.
Rebelmatic closed out the day and this band truly never ever runs on anything less than 110%; even with the fierce heat, this show was no exception. They are one of the hardest working bands in the NYC DIY scene today, organizing outdoor events on a regular basis and inviting other DIY locals to play, almost single handedly keeping the flame alive during the latter part of 2020 when any kind of live music was still so scarce. As the sun began to dip lower in the sky, they tore through a set of fan favorites like “Born To Win,” from their 2020 release Ghost In The Shadows, and “Feel Some Type of Way,” and “Don’t Shoot” both from the 2020 EP Eat The Monster, bringing the day to a close with a hard hitting, intensely exhuberant coda.
Scroll down for pics of the show
(photo by Ellen Qbertplaya)
(All remaining pics by Kate Hoos)