9th Step is a relatively young band out of Salem, Oregon that brings straight in your face music which draws as much from the roughest classic hardcore sound as from the meanest punk rock. So you can hear in their music familiar elements from bands like Agnostic Front or Negative Approach and even Discharge or Last Resort. Even if they are not at the level of any of those bands yet, they still go hard tho. I hope every one of you has checked their demo which we recently uploaded, Tear Me Down track is a banger plus you get ACAB cover as a bonus.
9th Step is a relatively young band out of Salem, Oregon that brings straight in your face music which draws as much from the roughest classic hardcore sound as from the meanest punk rock. So you can hear in their music familiar elements from bands like Agnostic Front or Negative Approach and even Discharge or Last Resort. Even if they are not at the level of any of those bands yet, they still go hard tho. I hope every one of you has checked their demo which we recently uploaded, Tear Me Down track is a banger plus you get ACAB cover as a bonus.First off, tell us something about 9th Step. Who is who in the band and how long you've been around?
The idea of the band and where we all met was at a local (Salem, Oregon) all ages venue called the Wasteland. It was owned by a guy named Jared and a few others it wasn't like most venues it became like everyone's home and everyone became friends. Unfortunately, it had to close due to financial reasons.
9th Step is like a mix of a few of the bands played there. I, Tony Morse, came up with the name 9th Step because the 9th step of any "12 step program" is to make amends. I felt this would fit because everyone in the band past and present has gone threw some shit, done some fucked up things, and all you can do at the end of the day is try to make amends. I'd like to clarify that we are not an straight edge band. The line up is Tony Morse (vox) Austin Zepeda (drums) Andy Dornon (bass) Steve Smith (guitar.) I'd also like to thank past members who got the ball rolling Hyatt, "Spoon" and Sam. We have only been a full line up and playing shows since December 2011.
9th Step is heavily influenced by some of my favorite bands like Blood For Blood, Madball or Discipline. What draws you to that type of sound in particular?
Blood For Blood is personally my favorite hardcore band it embodies everything I love about music. The dual vocals work with each other perfectly, their hatred and contempt for society, and the music flows so well while staying so raw. That's where I draw a lot of my influence. But the theme behind all those bands is their raw old school, to the point, and draw a lot of influence from "oi" music, which I like hence; ACAB the 4 Skins cover. We basically take influence from all referent types of heavier music.
What about the lyrical content? Where do you go for inspiration?
Mostly feelings of struggle and oppression, battling with my own morals and with who I want to be. As well as many other social subjects but that's the basis of it.
Playing in a hardcore band can be rough, what gets you going to run 9th Step and how do you manage to balance personal responsibilities with the band?
Music is the only thing that I've really gave a fuck about, so I stay pretty motivated with managing responsibilities. We are not so good at this, Double A, Austin, and I are all jobless not counting random hustles of course. Steve is really good at this, he has a job, a girlfriend, and 3 bands I don't know how he pulls it off but I admire him for it.
What aspect or which band embodies the best of what's happening in hardcore currently?
There is a lot going on, but I would have to say Terror. They are always on tour, always putting out good albums one after the other, and keeping it raw and real! No fluff no gimmicks all while staying humble they deserve every drop of recognition they're getting.
And what embodies the worst aspect of hardcore scene of today?
Unnecessary violence! None of us are pacifists, but when it gets venues shut down and cops called its not cool, just take it down the street!
What are some other bands from Oregon you’re down with?
Get Wise (Hardcore/Punk) and Tides (Hardcore) are very promising new bands from Eugene! Proven and The Athiarchists, are also awesome bands. We played a few shows with a band called Buck Williams from Portland. Very good stuff. They deserve a lot more recognition! We also got all our Salem bands most of which not hardcore but homies all the same; Fuzzy Thunder (Psychedelic Stoner Rock) Skatter Bomb (Ska Punk,) Neversleep (Metal,) Tetramorphic (Metal,) ect.
This one is going to be hard, but what are the most defining albums in hardcore history in your opinion?
I don't know about defining but I'll put some albums that define hardcore for me; Agnostic Front: Another Voice, Blood For Blood: Revenge on Society, and Vietnom Death: Is the Outcome. There is a compilation album called The Worldwide Tribute To The Real Oi Volume 1 and 2. There are amazing Agnostic Front, Cocksparrer, Madball, Last Resort, Sick of It All, and Blood For Blood albums, the list just goes on!
Can you remember what the first hardcore record you bought was?
The first hardcore vinyl I bought was agnostic front Live at CBGB's.
Thanks for your time doing this! Anything you would like to add before we finish?
Hey thank you man your website is a real public service for bands, and your judgment and reviews are spot on. Everyone keep an eye out for our full length demo coming in the next few months. For the readers check out our Facebook. The demo is free in the download section of this sight. Thanks and as always, Fuck the police.