By Adam Lovinus
By Lilledeshan Bose
By Gabriel San Roman
By Rachel Mattice
By Stephanie Zacharek
By Daniel Kohn
By Nate Jackson
By Mike Seeley
The Johns' debut album, Preacher (on local label Anko), proves they're the veritable Everyband in the OC punk scene. Produced by Paul Minor (Thrice, Atreyu, New Found Glory), the dozen-track disc is a prime specimen of liquor- and heartbreak-fueled rawk.
Starting with TSOL and the Vandals, then morphing into No Use for a Name and Face to Face in the '90s, the SoCal punk scene hasn't changed much over the years; the impact of the genre still lingers well into this decade with a new generation of bands including Radio Saints and Night Child. The bands today possess no innovation, no ingenuity, no interest in furthering the direction of the music—instead, they focus on what's worked in the past and making it their own. The Johns—who've been around for three years and issued a couple of EPs and 7-inches—embrace the OC sound, which has enabled them to fit in nicely on stages with X, the Cadillac Tramps and Social Distortion, as well as garner a coveted rotation slot on XM's Rancid Radio.
The Johns are the archetypal four-piece: Tommy Macke on vocals, Rob Milucky on guitar, Mike Rouse on bass and Joel Ronamoe (since replaced by Matt Montalto) on drums. Each track on Preacher clocks in at less than three minutes and emanates raw, unrestrained energy. Its themes? Why, sex, drugs, and rock & roll, of course. You know how Orange County rolls . . . and rocks.
The Johns perform with Social Distortion at the House of Blues, 1530 Disneyland Dr., Anaheim, (714) 778-2583; www.hob.com . Tues., 7:30 p.m. $27.50. All ages.
Attention Orange County/Long Beach musicians and bands! Mail your music, along with your vital contact info and a decent high-resolution photo (plus any impending performance dates and bribe money—large bills, please; daddy needs a new pair of shoes) for possible review to: Locals Only,OC Weekly, 1666 N. Main St., Ste. 500, Santa Ana, CA 92701. Or just be lazy and e-mail your MySpace link to firstname.lastname@example.org.