Punk is not dead in Chico

Jesse Romero, who traveled to Chico from Fresno for the Jefferson Fest Showcase at 1078 Gallery downtown, provides the vocals for Choke Slam. Feb 27, 2015. Photo credit: Trevor Ryan

Illuminating the gallery walls, the soft glow of warm lighting bounced across the room, lining a trail of contemporary art.

1078 gallery played host to “The Jefferson Pre-Fest,” a hardcore punk showcase celebrating “The Jefferson Fest” based in Anderson, CA. The Jefferson Fest is a hard core punk movement with bands hailing from Chico, Redding, Humboldt and other surrounding areas.

The night started off with Kong, a Chico band who showed such high energy for a rather intimate crowd.

They ended their set list with the perfect curtain call; a smashed guitar.

Each band played their music to an eclectic mix of people. The crowd was made up of mostly those in their mid-20s but was littered with some slightly older individuals and even middle schoolers from the skate parks close by.

Joshua Emery, who is both Kong’s guitarist and part of the Jefferson Crew, is part of the initiative that made the night possible.

It was hard to pick who stood out when every band took the time to engage with their audience throughout the night. The small venue made it easy for the audience to respond to the enthusiasm. Even though the gallery’s “no-drugs-no-alcohol” policy were strictly imposed, it showed no signs of dampening the night.

PSO, who headlined the night, is a skate punk band hailing from Lemon Grove, CA. The band of brothers from San Diego really proved themselves worth the wait. It was clear from the audience that their stellar performance ended the night on the right note.

Song after song, it slowly became obvious that the essence of the punk movement was also deeply rooted in the audience. As the mosh pits gained pace, those who fell were quickly picked up by other participants. Punk is so frequently misinterpreted but here there was no violence or rough housing; it was clear that here it was all about the music.

Set List

Vacant Youth
Make Way

Marissa Iqbal Hakim can be reached at [email protected] or @daenamarissa on Twitter.