Naked Raygun in Chicago, 2012
|Origin||Chicago, Illinois, United States|
|Years active||1980–1992, 2006–present|
Riot Fest Records
|Associated acts||Big Black
|Past members||Santiago Durango
From the beginning, their music had a strong sense of melody and songwriting, although ofttimes their music devolved into a mashup of jungle jazz and rockabilly. Sadly, no music exists from that very early period. Later on, their lyrics often explored working class issues. Naked Raygun began as an arty punk band and were thought by some to be rather fey. After Camilo Gonzalez joined the band, their direction became more traditionally punk and some would place them in the hardcore punk pantheon. Later, they branched out into post-hardcore territory. By their early 1990s incarnation, Naked Raygun's melodic tendencies became more pronounced, with strong power pop leanings in the vein of Buzzcocks, Stiff Little Fingers, and The Jam.
The band was formed in 1980 by Santiago Durango and Marko Pezzati. They went through many singers before settling on Marko's brother, Jeff Pezzati. Singer Jeff Pezzati was the sole constant member through multiple personnel changes. Members over time include drummers Bobby Strange, Jim Colao, and Eric Spicer; bassists Marko Pezzati, Pierre Kezdy, Camilo Gonzalez and Pete Mittler; guitarists Santiago Durango, John Haggerty, and Bill Stephens; and keyboardist John Lundin.
Camilo Gonzalez quit in 1982 and rejoined the group he was originally recruited from, Silver Abuse—one of Chicago's first punk bands. They have recently reformed and will soon release a new album.
In 1989, John Haggerty left Naked Raygun to form Pegboy with his younger brother Joe (formerly of Bloodsport and The Effigies) and Steve Saylors and Larry Damore of the Bhopal Stiffs (Pierre Kezdy would later replace Steve Saylors).
In 2006 Naked Raygun reunited for Riot Fest, an annual punk rock festival held in Chicago. Following their 2006 reunion, Naked Raygun announced that the band was "back for good." The reunited lineup consists of its "Raygun...Naked Raygun" members: Pezzati, Stephens, Kezdy, and Spicer. In 2009 Naked Raygun returned to the studio for the first time since 1997 for a series of 7" singles released on Riot Fest Records and announced plans to record an LP, the first since 1990's Raygun... Naked Raygun.
- Throb Throb LP -with cover art by Macintosh comic book artist Mike Saenz- ::Homestead Records (1985), Quarterstick Records (1999 - CD only), Haunted Town Records (2008 - LP only)
- All Rise LP ::Homestead (1986), Quarterstick Records (1999 - CD only), Haunted Town Records (2008 - LP only)
- Jettison LP ::Caroline Records (1988), Quarterstick Records (1999 - CD only)
- Understand? LP ::Caroline Records (1989), Quarterstick Records (1999 - CD only)
- Raygun...Naked Raygun LP ::Caroline Records (1990), Quarterstick Records (1999 - CD only)
- Last of the Demohicans CD ::Dyslexic Records, (1997)
- Free Shit! live LP/CD ::(Haunted Town Records)
- What Poor Gods We Do Make CD ::Riot Fest Records (2007)
- Basement Screams 12" ::Ruthless Records (1983), Quarterstick Records (1999 - CD only), Haunted Town Records (2007 - LP only)
- Treason 12" ::3 songs, on pink vinyl limited to 2,500 numbered records (although unnumbered versions, stamped "Promo only" exist) ::Caroline Records (1989)
- Flammable Solid 7" ::Ruthless Records (1983)
- Vanilla Blue 7" on white/light blue marbled vinyl ::Sandpounder Records (1987)
- Home 7" on green vinyl ::Caroline Records (1990)
- Series 1 7" on red & on cream vinyl ::Riot Fest Records (2009)
- Series 2 7" on violet & on black vinyl ::Riot Fest Records (2010)
- Series 3 7" on clear orange vinyl ::Riot Fest Records (2011)
- What Poor Gods We Do Make DVD ::Riot Fest Records (2007)
Compilation album appearances
- Busted At Oz LP (Autumn Records, 1981)
- Rat Music for Rat People, Vol. 3 (CD Presents, 1987)
- Somethings's Gone Wrong Again: The Buzzcocks Covers Compilation (CD, LP, Comp, C/Z Records, 1992)
- Naked Raygun Biography by Greg Prato at AllMusic
- Big Black Biography by Mark Deming at AllMusic
- Pegboy Biography by Steve Huey at AllMusic
- The Bomb Biography by Andy Kellman at AllMusic
- DeRogatis, Jim (December 1, 1997). "Naked Raygun". Chicago Sun-Times. p. 32.
- Kot, Greg (December 1, 1997). "LASER-SHARP RAYGUN FIRES BACK POST-NIRVANA, POSTPUNK SCENE CLAIMS ITS DUE IN HIGH-OCTANE METRO SHOW". Chicago Tribune. p. 2.
- Kot, Greg (September 5, 1999). "PUNK LEGACY A DECADE LATER, NAKED RAYGUN FIRES VOLLEYS FROM THE UNDERGROUND". Chicago Tribune. p. 10.
- "Naked Raygun reunite permanently, plan live CD/DVD". AP Alt Press. January 4, 2007.
- Naked Raygun Official Web Site
- Official Site - History
- Riot Fest – Naked Raygun entering the studio soon for 7" series, LP coming later
- "Interview With Neutron Bombs/Naked Raygun/The Bomb Bass Player Pete Mittler". Critical Mass. 2011-08-12. Retrieved 3 February 2012.
- Naked Raygun discography at Discogs
- Naked Raygun at AllMusic
- Official Naked Raygun Website
- Naked Raygun page at the Chicago Punk wiki
- Naked Raygun
- Throb Throb – fan site
- Riot Fest Official Website
- Maximumrocknroll Article – Naked Raygun article from 1984
- Naked Raygun on JBTV
- Naked Raygun: Combat Rock Interview with Roy Christopher, 2008