by Ramsey Beyer, Mitch Clem, Steve Larder, Liz Prince, Ashley Rowe, Ben Snakepit and Anthony Sorge
Charming, funny, fascinating, and visually striking, this collection of comics about punk house shows matches the form to the feeling of punk rock itself. Those of us who partake know that house shows can be insular and self-indulgent, in the best and worst ways, which this book handles craftily. Kim Funk's story about his band rallying the crowd to kick out the obnoxiously sexist group will have you cheering along. Mitch Clem demonstrates the best writing in the book, weaving bigger story arcs into the narrative in an engaging way, "I feel out of place in other people's friendships...It sucks to be threatened by other people's closeness, yet it remains an issue, even now that I'm thirty years old. I know I'll never be as close with anyone as they are with their real friends." He tragically missed an acoustic Mountain Goats house show as a result, and we can probably all relate, unfortunately. The anthology winds down strong with Bill Pinkel's "The Frowning Of A Lifetime," about a guy physically picking up a drunk woman and bumping into others, not comprehending how this is an intrusion into her space. The brilliance of the story is that it provides room to think about one's own behavior in a non-threatening and educational way. This necessary collection has a dozen other stories both fit for the young and the punk elderly!