Thursday, August 27, 2009

Stretch Arm Strong (1991 - 1992)

In April of '91 I started jamming again with Kevin Purcell and John Hoffman. The years had past since we were in Barking Spiders and we became better musicians so we started writing more intricate songs. We called ourselves Stretch Armstrong, after the 1970's doll. It started off as casual but by summer we decided to get serious and find a singer. For the first time we chose to go outside the pool of singers in Bellmore – although Steve Zielinski tried out – and we put an ad in Good Times entertainment paper. Jim Burns was shuffling off to Buffalo State College, otherwise I'm sure he would've been our man.

After numerous auditions we settled on Dean Mastrantoni (a.k.a. Dean Drillbit). At the audition he told us he'd played with Steve Zielinski before so we thought that was great – Steve later informed us Dean was difficult. But I too can be difficult...that comes with having a creative I wasn't deterred. Dean definitely had different influences than us. He came from a goth/new wave background, while we were punk rock. I personally never got the whole "goth" thing...I've got friends that do but I just don't. With Dean's influences we became more of a goth-rock band...which we were comfortable first.

We changed our name to three words – Stretch Arm Strong – and recorded our first demo tape in February of '92 on a 4-track recorder in my basement. Looking back I wish Kevin and I eased up on the chorus pedal a bit...but that was the early 90's. With the tape we booked a bunch of shows at The Right Track Inn, FM's, Hammerheadz and CBGB's (some of which I'll get to in later posts). In August of '92 we recorded seven more songs on 4-track in my basement but by then Dean and I were at constant odds so we soon called the whole thing off.

[DOWNLOAD] Stretch Arm Strong (1992 demo)
01- Dreams Of Youth
02- Lift The Shades
03- Rage Asunder
04- Spiral Faces (alternate version)
05- Pangs Of Liquid Inertia
06- In The Oven
07- S.A.S.
08- Secular Vow
09- Look Out
10- Why?...Pathetic Humans
11- Matter Of The Mind
12- The Bridge
13- Spiral Face (original version)

Dean Drillbit - vocals, guitar
Frank Fusco - guitar
Kevin Purcell - bass
John Hoffman - drums

1 comment:

dean mastrantoni said...

Nice to still see this up here after all these years...hope those guys are doing okay~