The Final Mosh: Cro Mags-Floorpunch-Breakdown at CBGB New York City NY 5-20-00

It is hilarious how infamous this show has become over the years, but, uh, yeah…it was pretty good…

Floorpunch came back from their European tour in the 1999 and seemed to drop off the face of the earth. They were supposed to play a gig that May with Vision and In My Eyes (where a bunch of pics from their second LP were taken. Oh, look, it’s me!) at Berkeley Heights, but dropped off (and so did Vision and I think h2o too. In My Eyes ended up headlining…I think…we will get to that show eventually) and then word seemed to come out that they were done. Porter did a few Floorpunch songs with In My Eyes + Geoff TDT at that gig (I got into a shoving thing with some kickboxer during “Always”) and it seemed pretty clear that Floorpunch had broken up. Scattered “Scabpunch” shows began happening including the final Ten Yard Fight show that fall, which I remember being pretty pissed about because I did not go. I saw Floorpunch like 10 times, so I really needed to calm the fuck down.

I cannot remember whether the Cro-Mags (AJ and…Mackie? I can’t remember who else. Not fucking Harley thank god. Nearly getting decapitated any time I *dared* to go near his side of the stage got old real fast in 2002/2003) or Floorpunch were announced first, but then Breakdown got added. What a dream lineup! Fun fact: At one point Right Brigade were also on this show, got mysteriously were not suddenly. Hmm. I did finally get to see them a few months later (with Fit For Abuse omg).

With another semester down, which included a biology professor who told me I was dyslexic and a math professor who came to a 50 minute class 15 minutes late each day and took cell phone calls during class, I was geared up for the show for sure. I packed into my car with a crew of kids from my area and we left for New York City. I remember we left pretty early in the morning thinking that a 2pm show would be packed with a big line pretty early, so the earlier we got there the better. Right, so, there was no line. At least at first. Doh.

So we drove up to Hoboken and took the PATH train into the city. We wandered around for a bit before making our way over the CBGB. A few people were already there from out of town and thankfully we knew them so we hung out for a bit. The shitty thing was it rained on and off all day, so of course I wore a short sleeve Token Entry shirt and nothing else. HOWEVER, this helped inside the show when it got unbelievable hot in there. A lot of out of town people started showing up around 1pm to 2pm. I ran into Dave K and we went off to a few comic book stores for a bit. He had ran into Duane Some earlier in the day. Cool.

Eventually, they started letting people inside. A band or two played before Floorpunch, but I don’t remember anything about them. When Floorpunch started playing, as I am sure you have seen, all hell broke loose. I get off two dives and then got lost in the mayhem for a few songs. It was as wild as it looks on the video. I moshed for a few songs, but it got, as it always did in that shit hole, really, really, hot and going off for more than a few songs became a problem. I can see myself dive for a few other songs, but I only vaguely remember this. I definitely remember seeing Dave Murphy go flying by me into the crowd during the Biohazard intro.

I really felt at the time like this set was the end of that “1997” era. A lot of those bands had broken up or absolutely sucked now (two major plagues in hardcore at the time were swing music and melodic hardcore) and people’s edges were dropping left and right. A lot of my friends were drifting away and pretty soon a lot of them were breaking edge too. Things definitely started to change and my day to day involvement with the hardcore scene was started to head into its winter for sure. Doing Parade Brigade Fanzine with John and Justin kept us all involved, but once that ended about a year later, things really changed at that point.

Oh look, it’s me diving!

I felt bad for Breakdown because the crowd was so dead for them. A handful of people went off, but the rest of the crowd just kind of hung out and tried to recover. I had not ate all day and felt pretty sick of my stomach. Eating before a show? Nah. why do that!?! The best moment ever in my life was when A HARDCORE SHOW stopped being the thing I wrapped my day around.

I do not remember why John Joseph brought back the Cro-Mags for this show, their first in a few years at least, but they were great obviously. I think they were called “Age Of Quarrel” at this show though. I hung out on the floor by the side of the stage and just watched them, totally immersed in just watching them. I dove out (and YAY, no bass players trying to kill me for diving near them!) for Life Of My Own and that is all I remember really. Oddly, there doesn’t seem to be a video despite such ample coverage of Floorpunch’s set. Huh.