Get SF Weekly Newsletters
Pin It

Code of Honor 

Complete Studio Recordings 1982-1984

Wednesday, Jun 28 2006
Though it never achieved the same level of international notoriety as contemporaries like the Dead Kennedys or Subterranean Records labelmate Flipper, politically charged local hardcore outfit Code of Honor produced some of the most bracing, radical punk music to emerge from San Francisco during the early '80s heyday of the Fab Mab and the Farm. Formed by Subterranean co-founder and in-house producer Michael D. Fox after the sudden dissolution of his band Sick Pleasure, CoH railed furiously against the status quo of Reagan's America and complacency among young punks with the songs compiled on the recently released Complete Studio Recordings 1982-1984. The invective spewed by singer Johnithin Christ on call-to-arms anthems "What's It Gonna Be?" and "People's Revolution" may be dated by references to El Salvador and then S.F. Mayor Dianne Feinstein, but his anti-government venom perfectly matches Fox' corrosive guitar and the pummeling, intricate rhythms of bassist Dave Chavez and drummer Sal Paradise. Flashes of experimentalism in earlier songs like the funky, Minutemen-style breakdown on "Death to You" flowered into full-blown hardcore weirdness on the band's sole full-length album Beware the Savage Jaw, an effort that confused punks of its time while foreshadowing the sound of things to come with abruptly shifting tempos and more sophisticated sonic palette. Here's hoping this long overdue reissue brings Code of Honor some of the credit it deserves for expanding the horizons of underground music.

About The Author

Dave Pehling


Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

Popular Stories

  1. Most Popular Stories
  2. Stories You Missed
  1. Most Popular


  • clipping at Brava Theater Sept. 11
    Sub Pop recording artists 'clipping.' brought their brand of noise-driven experimental hip hop to the closing night of 2016's San Francisco Electronic Music Fest this past Sunday. The packed Brava Theater hosted an initially seated crowd that ended the night jumping and dancing against the front of the stage. The trio performed a set focused on their recently released Sci-Fi Horror concept album, 'Splendor & Misery', then delved into their dancier and more aggressive back catalogue, and recent single 'Wriggle'. Opening performances included local experimental electronic duo 'Tujurikkuja' and computer music artist 'Madalyn Merkey.'"