|Origin||Boston, Massachusetts, United States|
|Years active||1982–1985 and 2010–present|
|Labels||X-Claim, Restless, Taang!, Reflex/Wolfpack Records|
|Past members||John Sox
The F.U.'s formed in late 1981 as a three piece Boston hardcore punk band. In 1986 they changed their name to Straw Dogs, moving toward heavy metal and reformed under their original moniker in 2010.
The F.U.'s were a hardcore punk band formed in Boston late in 1981. The band initially consisted of John Sox, bass/lead vocal, Bob Furapples, drums and Steve Grimes, guitar. The original lineup recorded a four song demo which got a good deal of local college radio airplay.
Shortly afterward Wayne Maestri was recruited to take over bass duties and that four piece lineup recorded the tracks for the compilation "This is Boston Not LA" and eventually three LPs on indie labels. The band name was taken from a comment made by Wendy O. Williams in an interview in which she said "Smashing TVs is a great way of saying 'F you' to society."
The F.U.'s started out playing fast, thrashy hardcore punk, and their first recorded output was on the 1982 Modern Method compilation, This Is Boston, Not L.A., which also featured tracks by Gang Green, Jerry's Kids and The Freeze. A companion 7-inch EP, Unsafe At Any Speed, included another F.U.'s track.
Later the same year, their debut album, Kill For Christ, was released on X-Claim Records, featuring cover artwork by Septic Death frontman Brian 'Pushead' Schroeder, depicting Jesus with a machine gun.
Their second album, also on X-Claim, My America, saw them labelled as right wing nationalists due to its patriotic lyrics (which were half-sarcastic), and artwork. The satirical punk band The Dead Milkmen poked fun at the band's supposed right-wing views on their song "Tiny Town" from the album Big Lizard in My Backyard.
The band's final album as The F.U.'s, Do We Really Want To Hurt You? followed in 1984, on Gasatanka/Enigma.
During the period of ultra-political hardcore punk of the early 1980s, The F.U.'s ran afoul of the influential Tim Yohannan and his Maximum Rocknroll for their patriotic personal politics, which were regarded by MRR as right wing nationalism. Drummer and songwriter Bob Furapples noted that MRR's negative publicity had adversely impacted the band's record sales, particularly in Europe.
In a 1984 interview with Flipside magazine, Furapples noted:
"...People see the mag [MRR] before they hear the record and get a distorted impression of the message. Our message is that you should be proud of your country, no matter where you're from. If you're not proud, leave. It has to do with being proud of yourself. Every country has good things about them, including Russia and other communist countries, not that I'd want to go there... So we're still playing no matter what almighty Tim [Yohannan] says.... It's like he's an old man so he thinks we should listen to him and what he has to say like he's our father."
With this album, the band had begun to take a more heavy metal direction, which was taken further when the band changed name to Straw Dogs, with guitarist Steve Martin and drummer Chris "Bones" Jones added to the line-up. As Straw Dogs, the band released an EP followed by two albums. Drummer Jones died in a car crash the day after the debut Straw Dogs LP was released.
Recent and reunion work
John Sox reintroduced the music of F.U.'s and Straw Dogs by forming the band Payload! in 2006 with Richie Rich, Bobby Frankenheim (who later joined the reunited DYS), Jack Snyder, and Mick Stunt. When approached by Katie Goldman of Gallery East to participate in an upcoming documentary called xxx ALL AGES xxx Sox decided to reunite all of the original members with members of Payload! to form the first hardcore supergroup for lack of a better term. Sharing the stage for a live show (as mentioned in the press release) at Club Lido in Revere were, Sox, Grimes, Furapples, Maestri, Rich, and Stunt.
The F.U.'s performed a reunion show in the Boston area on August 29, 2010 along with fellow Boston pioneer hardcore punk bands DYS, Jerry’s Kids, and Gang Green as well as New York City’s Antidote. The show was in support of xxx ALL AGES xxx, a documentary about the original hardcore punk scene in Boston in the early 1980s, being produced in association with Stone Films NYC.
The reunited band has followed the Club Lido show with gigs in New England, returned to the studio to record a song for a compilation called Cashing in on Christmas Vol. III for Black Hole Records, and was contemplating a European mini-tour in 2012.
The current lineup is John Sox, vocals, Rockin' Bob Cenci (formerly of Jerry's Kids), lead guitar, Jonesey Stunt (son of Mick Stunt), second guitar, Richie Rich, Bass, and Bob Furapples, drums.
- Kill For Christ (1982), X-Claim
- My America (1983), X-Claim
- Do We Really Want to Hurt You (1984), Gastanka/Enigma
- Straw Dogs EP (1986), Restless
- We Are Not Amused (1986), Restless 1986
- Your Own Worst Nightmare (1990), Lone Wolf