Persistent punks

Dayton Music Pest slams downtown, again

By Mike Ritchie

Photo: Cleveland’s Fuck You Pay Me (FYPM) will headline Day 2 of Dayton Music Pest, May 15 at Canal Public House; photo: Shel Greenberg Erba

While other huge rock festivals are happening elsewhere in the state, Dayton Music Pest is staying local, bringing the best of the local, extended and national extreme and hardcore scene to Canal Public House on Friday, May 15 and Saturday, May 16. Ten bands are ready and willing to rip your face off over two days, with less care and more violence than a zombie’s appetite.

Friday night West Coast LA Grindcore legends Excruciating Terror share the stage showcasing nine other bands ranging from power violence, blackened punk and metal, noise-grind, black doom metal, thrash and fast-core. There will be a mosh pit to fit everyone’s sick, twisted tastes for fun, brotherly love and bodily harm.

E.T. headlines with the power-violence of LA’s Stapled Shut sharing the stage with three great talents from Dayton: Architects of Doom, Choking and Zuel. Lima, Ohio sends the fast-core sounds of Hot Babes. From the capital come blackened punks Fever Nest and the black metal of Slave House. Outside Ohio’s beautiful borders comes Michigan’s grind-core Girth and making the cross country trek from the San Fernando Valley are noise-grinders Vulva Essers. Local artist Lost Cat will handle the after-party noise.

Saturday hosts just as full a docket: Cleveland’s hardcore royalty FYPM and Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania’s hardcore Killer of Sheep will headline. Along for the ride are fellow Cleveland legends Wetbrain, consisting of extreme metal alumni. Pittsburgh hits Dayton three times with a closed fist with the punks from The Sicks, send a bit of peace/post punk from Silence and go hardcore with No Time. Chi-town comes with Family Secrets as Philly brings some hate with members of Cape of Bats & Vent with Deathmonger A.D. The mutant Biff Boys are coming from Indy. Back in Ohio, punk/indie Brat Curse with Mickey from Nervosas and the Dirtworshippers from Columbus come down to the west side of the state. Dayton shows off its ballistic brethren with the punk R&R of New Negrets along with scene vets Legbone, queer noise/doom-twee Skurt, Cold Sore and Big Wooly.

FYPM (F— You Pay Me) is fast, negative, dark hardcore from Cleveland, done correctly.

Comprised of friends/former bandmates from other bands, FYPM consists of blue-collar workers with a strong anti-Kasich, pro-Union, pro-women and anti-police message and attitude.

Influenced by Discharge, the Jabbers, Raw Power and Toxic Reasons, they started in January 2013 releasing one full-length LP with 3 new releases coming on Six Weeks, Deep Six and Tankcrimes Records.

DMP organizer and show promoter James Alan Downing Groth started small with big ideas and humble beginnings.

“Aside from very small house shows in Dayton suburbs that we threw when we were 14 or so, the first show I booked was for Johnny Socko, a ska band from Indianapolis,” Groth recalls. “It was around 1997 at Circle Billiards in the Wagner Ford traffic circle.”

He started his event organizing skills, getting his foot in the door with a few innocent little fibs.

“I lied to the owner about my age so they would let us have the date. I lied to Sound Force to get a PA rental, more than likely lied to their agent as well. Lots of lying back then,” he jokes.

“The local bands were Nemesis and High Society, both broke up ages ago. From there I just put a listing in Book Your Own Fucking Life, which was an annual publication of contacts for bands, venues, labels etc. I used to get home from school and check the answering machine for messages from bands looking for shows.”

Pest is not his first stab at a festival type show.

“I lived in Oregon for a few years and hosted Portland Pseudo Fest, with Against Me! and a plethora of bands no one would remember,” he says. “That one was kinda huge. In 2004, my friend Alice Goguen and I hosted Not Much More Than Music Fest in Dayton. It was held over three days at the then El Diablo downtown. Forty bands played, three were from Dayton including (Yes, Collapse), 8 Bit Revival and Attax Unit Youth. It was mostly not a disaster.”

Pest is basically his excuse to get a lot of his friends’ bands together and have a good time.

“It’s not a business venture. There is no money to be made in this!” he laughs. “The first Pest was last November and 12 bands played. It was more of a lottery to determine the order, no one really headlined per se. This year I took a different approach, more local bands and a more diverse variety, which will hopefully bring out more people.”

Dayton Music Pest show begins at 4 p.m. Friday, May 15 at Canal Public House, 308 E. First St. Tickests are $12 at door. Saturday’s show starts at 12 p.m. Tickets are $15 at the door. For more information, please visit Dayton Music Pest 2 on Facebook, or contact Groth at

Reach DCP freelance writer Mike Ritchie at

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Reach DCP freelance writer Mike Ritchie at

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