Given that nearly 30 years have passed since the inception of punk rock, it's little wonder there's been such an explosion of punk nostalgia. From punk-retrospective films to the seemingly endless number of reunion tours, music fans have witnessed punk go from revolutionary artistic movement to scripted and restrained music genre. Music fans and those interested in rebellious subcultures are left puzzling not the tired question “Is punk dead?” but rather “Is punk relevant anymore?” Has the punk generation gone the way of the Beat generation, in that it has become a movement so set in a time and place as to entirely debilitate its impact beyond that of nostalgia? Does punk matter in 2007, when kids on the way to the mall download to their iPods such cookie-cutter boy groups as Good Charlotte while wearing cargo pants and Misfits-brand Chuck Taylors purchased from Hot Topic?
M.D.C. show naysayers that not only does punk still matter, but it's also still completely necessary. Punk remains relevant not because MTV, the Vans Warped Tour or any other form of corporate “punk” says so. Punk remains relevant because M.D.C. and bands like it continue to attack that kind of bullshit. From their first record, 1982's Million of Dead Cops, M.D.C. unrepentantly attack the elements of our society—corporate and political—that seek to brainwash us into valuing consumption above all else and, in the process, ignoring things such as racism, homophobia, sexism and war. Although “Corporate Deathburger,” “John Wayne Was a Nazi” and “Business on Parade” were written during the Reagan era, they sound just as relevant in the Bush nightmare we find ourselves living in today. Take a drive to see M.D.C. in Corona . . . but make sure you clear up any unresolved warrants before the show. Something about the band has a tendency to attract the attention of the police.
M.D.C. with Instant Asshole, the Voids, Last Round Up, Kill Deville and C.O.P. at the Showcase Theatre, 683 S. Main St., Corona, (951) 340-0988; www.showcasetheatre.com . Fri., 7 p.m. $10-$12. All ages.