Judging from the parking-lot overflow, entryway bottleneck and rapid-fire rhythmic assault emanating from the room’s southwest corner, it’s just another Saturday at the Double Down Saloon. There’s nary a celebratory Ass Juice special to commemorate the Fourth of July evening. The first performance in six months by veteran punk instigators Fuck Shit Piss—vocalist Danny Breeden, bassist Johnny Bangs, drummer Mike Fouts and, since 2006, guitarist Paul French—is business as usual.
The innard-jarring 30-minute set is also meant to serve as FSP’s 25th-anniversary show. Breeden shrugs at a congratulatory mention. “We just did it because tonight was available. To be honest, if it was really going to be our 25th anniversary, it would have been [this] winter.”
Having withstood two and a half decades of lawless desert shows, periodic breakups, emotional reunions, regional tours and inevitable scene splintering, Breeden remains impassive, his slicked-back swath of dark hair, thick goatee, studious glasses and black bolo tie giving him the air of a Hells Angel-turned-social sciences professor. He saves his emoting for FSP’s dozen indignant thrashers, some predominantly instrumental, most indecipherable, none practiced ahead of time and all addressing injustices past and present. “Your appreciation is negligible. We don’t care!” the frontman growls as a half-fallen American flag vibrates above the drum kit. “This is another one I wrote in high school. It’s 18 seconds long.”
- Beyond the Weekly
- Fuck Shit Piss
One aspect of tonight’s “slapped-together” show that genuinely excites Breeden? Sharing the bill with fellow Vegas hardcore survivors Self Abuse, who follow with a blistering 45 minutes. “Self Abuse were a major influence on us,” Breeden enthuses of Todd Sampson & Co. “I tried to get our bands together to play a gig so many times, and something or other came up, and it always fell apart. It took 25 years for my band to play with their band.”
Late the following afternoon, persistent modesty and a hoarse throat prevent Breeden from expounding on FSP’s quarter-century legacy. Though he recalls the band’s first gig with ease (“I had the flu. It was at Dirty Momma’s on Decatur. We did horribly. Everybody hated us. We were too fast, too messy. Kind of like last night.”), its future remains a bit murkier. While Breeden estimates FSP will average around two local shows a month, plans for a long-gestating debut album and compilation DVD hold less priority. “We’re all working guys with families, so the funds aren’t really there,” he admits.
“We don’t make money on our gigs, so everything comes out of our own pockets. And this has never been a thing that we’ve been that serious about. We never really put anything out on vinyl. We didn’t really record on four-track. We did a demo in ’86, that was it. It’s more like a fun, local thing for us ... and that’s okay.”