Wednesday, February 10, 2016

My Favorite Albums From the '90s: Social Distortion by Social Distortion

Of all the albums in the '90s I have listened to, the self-titled album by Social Distortion had the biggest influence on me. I was a sophomore in high school and listening to shitty hair metal. One day after school at a friend's house, I saw the music video for Social D's "Ball and Chain". I immediately fell in love with the song. It was catchy as hell and it sure beat the hell out of the shitty music I was listening to at the time. The music was nothing I had ever heard of at the time. No one at my high school that I knew of was listening to bands like Social Distortion. Most of my peers were into top 40 music. "Ball and Chain" was one of those few rare songs that had a profound effect on me and my musical tastes. The song remains one of my personal favorite songs to this very day. I also adore the band's cover of "Ring of Fire", it is just as good, if not better than the original (and I love the original by Johnny Cash).

I think it was a week or two after I saw the video did I pick up the album (on cassette). I really played the hell out of that cassette. After getting into Social Distortion, I started reading up on the alternative rock scene via Maximum Rock N Roll and Flipside fanzines. I quickly ditched the hair metal scene and started listening to bands like Babes in Toyland, L7, 7 Year Bitch, The Gits, The Rollins Band, etc...etc... . I absolutely hated high school like a lot of people but one of the few good things to come out of it is discovering that there is much better music outside of top 40 music and shitty hair metal. I will be eternally grateful for the influence Social Distortion's self-titled album had on me and making the rest of my high school somewhat more bearable.

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