Unearthed is issue #6 of Terminally Stupid, the photocopied 1985 punk and hardcore photo zine. Twenty-eight years in the making and dedicated to a year of punk and hardcore gigs in Vancouver. “Through the camera lens of a 17-year-old suburban kid and his friend who had a darkroom and a better camera,” says Dan Walters, the zine creator. The zine integrated scene reports from Vancouver and Toronto circa 1985.

That was a good year for punk and hardcore in Vancouver with all-ages shows at the “New” York Theatre on Commercial Drive, a regular Wednesday night at Gastown’s John Barley’s and late night at Lux Bob’s Warehouse in East Van. “It was the best way to learn about this relatively new thing called “hardcore” by interviewing all the local bands and then the touring bands at their shows,” explains Walters.

He started taking pictures with his 35mm camera and then hooked up with kindred spirit: punk and skater Dean Attridge. Dean had a darkroom and SLR so they’d print their own B&W photos. They would trade the 8×10 photos for promo and display at Laurie Mercer’s Collector’s RPM Record Store on Seymour Street in exchange for backstage access at the York Theatre.

“Along with the zine I had put out a compilation cassette of then-unreleased local hardcore and also helped out on the punk rock radio show, 85 RPM, Wednesdays at midnight on CFRO co-op radio 102.7. I skated over the Pattullo Bridge in the wee hours of the morning (pre-Skytrain) making it home just in time to get ready for school.” By summer, the 17-year-old Walters couch-crashed at the “Plaza International” punk house in Vancouver. He became a part of the fanzine network and the word got out about his project. Band photos rolled in from all over after that. By spring, he moved to Vancouver and landed a job and a band. The show photography time was swapped for rehearsal time and gigging.

“By the summer of 1986, I didn’t have the time and handed it all off to a fellow zine editor, Kim Kinakin, who was to finally get it printed: She put out C.O.H. fanzine and also ran Final Notice Records (releasing the Mission of Christ/ Fratricide split 7″) with Cory Yuzak from Dick For Brains fanzine. Ambitious bunch… but then life (and eventually Sparkmarker) got hold of Kim, too…

“Twenty-eight years later it was time to get the photos out there and I’m still trying to track down photo credits. Luckily, I got confirmation on them from the bands. Sorry in advance to those who are uncredited. Just drop me a message if any of these are your photos, and I’ll add your name to it ASAP.

“The title “Diving With Your Boots On” was originally to be a poster collage made up of just that: stage divers over the year diving with their boots on. It seemed fitting at the time,” he says.

“I’d like to give a special thank you to Laurie Mercer who ran Collector’s RPM Record store on Seymour in Vancouver and promoted most of the big punk shows that year and to Al Campbell a.k.a. Mr. Ed Banger, another local promoter who would always tag his posters and flyers with a note to ‘step lively,” adds Walters.

Check out http://melonvillehc.blogspot.ca/ to download hi-res copies of all the shots!

By More Betty

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