Having a favorite band has many layers. There are present favorites, long-time favorites, forever favorites, local favorites, favorites you can only dream of seeing, favorites of favorites, et cetera. Sometimes I get locked in time. In the mid-2000s there were a few years where I was traveling to fests on a regular basis and seeing many of the same favorite bands. I had a couple favorites in that era that I would travel to see no matter what. Most of those bands are still playing shows and my determination to see them still holds.
Hellshock is one of those bands. When their first record came out, I sorta lost my mind. I carried on to everyone who would listen about how great it was. I begged them to come east and play shows, which eventually happened. I’ve seen Hellshock countless times, here and there across the country. I’ve been picked up at a Midwestern airport and frantically driven to get to a show in time to see them. I’ve woken up a house full of hung-over fest goers to go see Hellshock play one more show in a basement early in the day (what I still refer to as “Hellshock for breakfast”). I’ve drunkenly begged them to play a spontaneous after-a-fest after-show several times when the opportunity has arisen.
It’s been a few years, but Hellshock came to my hometown Richmond for a mid-week show. I got out of work and ran across town to see my dudes. Suddenly, there I was watching them set up, grabbing China, my best comrade in show-going, saying, “OMG this is going to happen! Hellshock!” (Pitter-patter - fast heartbeat from me.) I look at China. I think of all the times I’ve about jumped out of my skin right before a favorite band is about to play. The adrenaline of excitement hits… and I’m just as excited as ever! HELLSHOCK!
So for once, rather than digging through the archives, I’m sharing a brand new photo of one of my all time favorite bands!
God damn they are good!