Suicide Machines

Suicide Machines

BandWorldPunk

Biography

They've been together as a band for 12 years, survived five Warped tours, countless lineup changes, the "third wave of ska," and the rise, fall, and return of punk-pop, but as Detroit's Suicide Machines release their 5th album in 7 years, A Match And Some Gasoline, their music and mission are stronger and clearer than ever. "I know it's a total cliché for a band to say, 'This is the best material we've ever done,' so I would never say that," founding member Dan Lukacinsky states modestly. "But what I can say is this is the best record we've made in quite a few years."

Since core bandmates Lukacinsky and Jason Navarro formed Suicide Machines in 1991, the group has released four powerful punk manifestos: Destruction By Definition (1996), Battle Hymns (1998), The Suicide Machines (2000), and Steal This Record (2001). But with A Match And Some Gasoline, they've happily found a new punk-rock home at SIDEONEDUMMY Records and co-produced their upcoming release with Bill Stevenson (of Descendents/Black Flag fame).

SM had wanted to record with Stevenson since befriending him during a 1997 Descendents/Suicide Machines tour, because, Lukacinsky succinctly explains, "He understands punk rock." Recording and mixing A Match And Some Gasoline at Stevenson's Blasting Room Studios in Fort Collins, Colorado, Lukacinsky says he and his fellow Machines "really felt like we were working with someone who really knew what we were doing. It was a really great vibe, with everybody working together as a team to make the record happen - a true community effort."

The resulting lean, mean Machines album is a refreshingly authentic antidote to the current glut of punk-lite clogging up TRL's airwaves. "Pop-punk is the only kind of 'punk' that gets shown on MTV, butt I'm sorry - that's not punk," Lukacinsky laments. "Suicide Machines, encompass bunch of different styles - hardcore, harder-edged thrash, punk, reggae, ska - and somehow we fit it all into what we do."

It's notable that - after the last two virtually ska-free SM albums - ska is once again a prominent element on A Match And Some Gasoline. Now that the ska craze of the late '90s has subsided, the 2-Tone influence actually sounds fresh all over again in upbeat new Machines songs like "Did You Ever Get A Feeling Of Dread?," "High Anxiety."

"I'm kind of happy that ska went away, because now it's safe to play it again," Lukacinsky laughs. "I didn't even think we were going to be able to write songs like that, but it just came out naturally. Knowing that it isn't the 'in' thing makes it so much more desirable to play now."

Fads like pop-punk and the ska revival come and go, but the Suicide Machines proved long ago that they can and will outlast any trend. Meanwhile, on their new album they're upholding a longstanding proud punk tradition of political protest, on caustic, socially conscious tracks like "Burning In The Aftermath," "Your Silence," "Invisible Government," and "The Politics Of Humanity."

"We've certainly had our share of silly songs, but writing songs that mean something is very important to us these days," Lukacinsky stresses, "because there's enough 'I lost my girl'-type songs out there. Like, 'Burning In The Aftermath' is about the human denial of the treat nuclear weapons, and 'Did You Ever Get A Feeling Of Dread?' is about how the government is banking on the hope that most people in this country are ignorant about what goes on behind the scenes. We're definitely not afraid to talk about more serious
subject matter, because the day that we can't express our opinions about what's going on in this country is going to be a sad day. The scary thing is that a lot of people don't really want to hear about serious issues, but maybe now they'll start taking notice of what's going on and paying more attention to lyrics, since things are getting so preposterous in the world."

Whether fans are paying attention to the Suicide Machines' potent political messages or equally potent punk melodies, it's undeniable that A Match And Some Gasoline is the kind of album that is essential listening.

Discography

1996 "Destruction By Definition" CD hollywood Records
1998 "Battle Hymns" Hollywood Records
2000 "Suicide Machines" Hollywood Records.
2001 "Steal This Record" Hollywood Records.
2003 "A Match And Some Gasoline" Side One Dummy Records.