Last summer, I had the privilege to be involved with Amenity's reunion. The Chula Vista hardcore band was stuff of legend for those of us who grew up in the South Bay, and while I had my share of hardcore shows and saw House of Suffering numerous times, I only ever got to see Amenity once back in the day.
I was thrilled when they reached out to me to help spread the word about "Shine", participate in the song's video release party at East Village Tavern & Bowl, and to be involved with anything Mike Down was doing. When you meet Mike, it is hard not to share the enthusiasm he has for music, for San Diego, and for life in general. When they asked me if I wanted to go on a roadtrip with the band to the Bay Area, it was an offer I couldn't refuse.
We piled in a couple cars and took a crew of old San Diego friends who all had some part of the hardcore scene back then. I drove with Mike, Delmar, and his daughter Americka, who was born just around the time Amenity played their last show. Tim drove a van with a bunch of other people, Alex, Beau, Hajj and others and we took the drive. It was a really amazing few days, and definitely more about the journey than the 30 minute set the band played at Gilman Street. We stayed a night on the floor of a big empty house one night, staying up all night sharing stories of the past, and the next night stayed with Eddie, and old friend from the scene who shared his beautiful home and family with a house full of people he probably hadn't seen in nearly two decades.
In the time after that trip, the band recorded four songs and were supposed to headline a Chula Vista Hardcore show at the MAAC center. At the last minute and after several of the bands played, Amenity pulled out of the show, and while apologetic, they never gave a full explanation of what happened. Some things just aren't worth airing publicly. The truth is that any band reuniting after nearly twenty years may not necessarily share the same vision.
Not satisfied with just the verbal and written apologies given to the eager kids that were let down that day, Mike Down and Tim Gonzales did what they know best. They took pen to paper and collaborated on a song, along with some spoken word from Hajj and Sergio Vega of the Deftones, they've put together a song.
You Can't Stop The Show by TimDCXX
Check out a feature on Doublecross here.
More photos after the jump.