Eye on the Scene

Mourning in the Class of 1982

Bart McPeek , a pivotal member of Knoxville's Ur-level punk and hardcore skateboarding scenes, died on June 15 from head injuries suffered in a boating accident. Bart was 42 years old.

McPeek was first spotted along the Cumberland Avenue strip around 1981 as an underage punker, sneaking into clubs with a fake ID. By the time he was a Junior in high school, he was playing bass guitar in a series of bands that laid the groundwork for what has become a longstanding underground rock scene.  

McPeek's local music career began with a short-lived high school punk band called UXB . When UXB predictably fizzled, he forged an alliance with Trey McReynolds (known to many Knoxvillians as Col. Bacchus ) and Greg Rogers in what was perhaps his most important group, Turbine 44 . Members of the fabled â“hardcore four,â” who played residencies at â“the carpeted sewer,â” Bundulee's Lounge in the summer of 1982, Turbine 44 far overstepped the narrow boundaries of hardcore with an experimental approach which channeled Flipper, Public Image, Ltd., and Captain Beefheart into a trash-rock aesthetic that was similar to but predated that of the Butthole Surfers .

Post-Turbine 44, McPeek joined forces with The Wedge , a hardcore/metal hybrid band that included guitarist David Teague (later of The Dickies and umpteen Los Angeles bands), drummer Larry Mullins (later of Wh-Wh , Iggy Pop 's band, The Swans, Angels of Light, Keren Ann 's band, and, solo, as Toby Dammit ), and former Koro vocalist Scott Semple . After a brief stint in Knoxville, the band moved to Austin, TX, sans Mullins, where drummer Greg Rogers (later of stoner rock foundation setters, The Obsessed ) joined the band.

McPeek reemerged on Knoxville's music scene as a member of Bone , a speed metal/shock-rock act that included the legendary Don â“Maddogâ” Rutherford on guitar and Todd â“Boneheadâ” Townsend on vocals.

McPeek was a prominent member of Knoxville's burgeoning skateboard culture of the 1980s, known for his daredevil antics. He relocated in the early 1990s to the Biloxi, MS area, where he found a quieter life, which focused on hunting and fishing. Bart's ashes will be spread in the Gulf Coast and on an area of the Mississippi wilderness he loved. He will be remembered as a rock-solid bass player, a shredding skater, an honest and genuine presence in an oftentimes-pretentious music scene, a constant joker, and, most of all, a good friend.

Local CD Review

Plan A

Caught Up in the Fray

With its first release, Caught Up in the Fray , Matt Woods ' Plan A has put together a decent album. At first listen, we were skeptical, but after a few times through the album it started to grow on us. The sound of the band is strong and cohesive but the major weakness on the album is the lyrics. Of the ten tracks on this album, it seems that too often the songs get bogged down in repetition. This is most evident in the song â“Miles Away.â” Matt repeats those words , miles away , twelve times throughout the song, eight of which occur within the same minute. Despite the repetitive nature of some of the lyrics, the songs are backed up with some solid guitar riffs that range from straight up rock to a wandering blues sound.

Although there is not one song that could be picked out as a single, there are a few that are definitely worth listening to. â“Fall Togetherâ” starts out with an intriguing guitar intro and builds into a coherent song that flows well from beginning to end. â“Lonely Onesâ” is another track that showcases the strength of their lead guitarist and some of the variations of inflection and tone that Matt Woods is capable of. The energy of these two tracks is countered by tracks like â“Ghost in My Bedâ” and â“Ears Against the Floor,â” which has a heavier blues guitar influence and shows that they are capable of slowing it down. In the end, if you're still wondering what they sound like, the closest comparison we can offer is 3 Doors Down . Both lead singers have similar vocal styles and the energy in the guitar riffs are comparable.


Thursday, June 28 : John Puckett will be at Backroom BBQ. They also have cheap PBR, if you're not into Puckett's synthy eagle screeches and tribal fusion.

Friday, June 29 : The King Bees are at Brackins Blues Club. We don't know what they sound like, but Previe w ' s Greg Wood tells us that â“Brackins has something that a lot of bars lackâ"atmosphere.â” He then went on to tell us how many tables and barstools are in the building.

Saturday, June 30 : Imp will be at the Pilot Light, bringing the heavy machinations of metal to life. They'll also be grunting, and sweating, and cursing God.

Sunday, July 1 : Oh, I am slain!

Monday, July 2 : Go to the free Wurlitzer Concert at the Tennessee Theatre. Get there just before noon, and be sure to be that guy yelling, Freebird!!

Tuesday, July 3 : Go to Barley's. Order a giant pizza. Nothing else.

Wednesday, July 4 : He who laughs last has not yet heard the bad news.

â" John Sewell , Bryan Langan , Kevin Crowe


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